This page tries to list most of the mental health treatment options out there today. It aims to provide both background information about these resources and also advice on how to get the most out of them.
If you're just getting into treatment and trying to figure out where to start, we suggest you begin with this Guide!
Most of the treatments discussed below are carried out under the care of a licensed mental health professional. There are many different types of providers who tend to provide different types of services. The link above is primer of the types of doctors that may be involved in your care.
The two you will most commonly see mentioned are psychiatrists and psychologists (or therapists). The providers page goes into significantly more detail, but for now you can generally think of psychiatrists as the ones who prescribe medications and psychologists or therapists as the people who help you talk through your feelings.
For many people experiencing psychiatric symptoms, medication is a necessary part of their treatment. Research shows that a huge component of mental illness is biological, based in actual chemical differences in the brain. Psychoactive medications can help address these issues, just like other medications can address the issues of people with asthma or diabetes and let them live a normal life.
Depending on your condition, symptoms, and their severity, you may not need to take very much medication or for very long. For other people, however, medication may need to become part of their daily routine, like teeth-brushing and vitamins. (If you're struggling to take your medication as prescribed, you might want to give this a read.) Whichever camp you fall into, knowing more about the pills we swallow usually makes us better able to care for ourselves.
A lot of people consider seeing a therapist (or are told to consider it!) at some point in their lives, but what does it really mean to go to therapy? In this section we'll address what therapy is and isn't, why you might want to go even if you think you don't, and lots of specifics about the various types and styles that often leave people confused.
If you're currently thinking, “All that is nice, but therapy isn't for me,” we suggest you start here.
Inpatient is a term used to distinguish treatment from “outpatient” - the former generally involves being admitted to some sort of hospital facility while the latter lets you continue living normal daily life and just visiting your doctors on occasion. The following are types of these higher-case services you may run into.