What is a psychiatrist?

A psychiatrist is a medical doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of mental illness. Board Eligible Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists have completed an extra two years of training to learn about the development, disorders, and treatments for children and adolescents.

When should I seek help for my child?

Mental illness is when problems with thoughts, feelings or behavior cause a lot of distress and /or impair functioning. When there are concerns about a child’s development, thoughts, feelings, or behavior, professional help may be needed.

Is it important to treat conditions early?

Often treating conditions early can prevent symptoms from escalating. Early intervention can be critical for the development of your child
and also prevent them from falling behind academically and socially.

Does this mean my child will always have a problem?

Not necessarily, many conditions can be treated with a combination of family, school, psychotherapy and /or psychopharmacologic interventions. Effective therapeutic interventions can also provide skills that help children and families manage stressors more adaptively and prevent future problems.

What if I am experiencing an emergency?

If you are concerned for your child’s safety, act immediately. Call Georgia Crisis Hotline at 800-715-4225, 911 or bring your child to an emergency room. If you are not sure, GA Crisis Hotline has counselors working 24 /7 who can advise you.

Do other children have similar issues?

Childhood mental disorders affect many boys and girls of all ages, ethnicities, races and backgrounds. Based on the National Research Council and Institute of Medicine report, up to 1 out of 5 children experience a mental disorder in a given year.