I need help, but I'm worried about it.
August 4, 2010 8:55 AM Subscribe
I need to get help with my mental illness, but I don't know who to see or where to start.
posted by your mom's a sock puppet to health & fitness (11 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Mid-twenties female anxiety sufferer here. The last two years on this earth have been incredibly stressful, which has turned my mild anxiety into a monster. I've experienced breakups, got engaged (and am planning a wedding), deaths in the family, illnesses, and I've been going to school full-time and working full-time. Currently I'm taking a year off from school, but I'm also dealing with recurrent infections and a new case of sciatica. The reason for the sciatica is unknown, as is the reason for my recurrent infections.
Needless to say, I've reached a breaking point in my life. I feel that my anxiety is making it harder for me to heal mentally and physically, and it's also putting a lot of strain on my wonderful fiance and our relationship. I am ready to get help with my anxiety and stop this cycle.
However, I don't know where to start.
I've talked briefly with my PCP about my concerns, but I haven't had a full discussion with her. My insurance (Keystone POS in Philadelphia, PA) requires that I get "referred". Does this mean I must go to a doctor that my PCP recommends, or do I choose my doctor (from the list of docs my insurance provides) and then call my PCP office and get them to put a referral in the system? I really don't like visiting my PCP more than I already do, so going to her for this seems like massive overkill. I'm also worried that she'll begin to doubt me or get annoyed when I come in for other issues.
Which kind of doctor should I see? Should I discuss this with my PCP first, or do I decide myself? I think I would benefit from both therapy of some sort and medication. I know that a psychiatrist would be the kind of doctor I need to see for prescription meds, but would s/he help with therapy, or would I need to see two different people? My insurance has two different sections with two different coverage and copay amounts. One is "Mental Health" and the other is "Serious Mental Illness". Which one (or both?) would I fall into? One requires a copay and is limited to 20days/calender year and the other is 100% covered and is limited to 35/calender year. Does a psychiatrist fall into one and a therapist fall into the other?
Thanks for your help. This is a sock puppet, so please feel free to ask questions and I'll respond. Bonus: if you've had a great experience with any kind of mental health professional in Philadelphia, PA, please feel free to recommend them in-thread or by me-mail.