Mental Health & Addiction Assessment
Pharmacogenetics is the study of genetic variability that causes individual responses to medications. It gives the prescriber the ability to individualize drug therapy for clients based on their genetic makeup. By analyzing the genes that produce the specific drug targets or enzymes that metabolize a medication or are associated with immune response, a practitioner may decide to raise or lower the dose or even change to a different drug. This increases the chance of achieving the desired therapeutic effect while reducing the likelihood of adverse effects. The decision about which drug to prescribe may also be influenced by other drugs the person is taking in order to avoid drug-drug interactions.
Corner Canyon seeks to find the right medications and dosages while a client is in treatment, helping them stabilize in a positive emotional state, access therapy more effectively, and help to prevent relapse upon discharge.
Comprehensive and thorough diagnostic assessment and stabilization are the first steps clients engage in at Corner Canyon. Psychiatric, Bio-psychosocial, and Medical evaluations take place in the first few days while clients are adjusting to the warm, healthy, and structured life at Corner Canyon. Psychological testing takes place when the individual is ready for it. These assessments provide a framework for developing the individualized treatment plan for each client and information that is helpful in aftercare planning.
Clients meet with our psychiatrist before and during treatment to help us gain a full understanding of their current medications and to explore the potential need for additional medication. Clients with a long history of alcohol or drug use usually experience symptoms such as depression and anxiety, irritability, and insomnia at the beginning of recovery. Our psychiatrist evaluates whether this is responding to initial treatment or if medications are required to assist. Longer term psychiatric issues are also reviewed in the addiction assessment to determine whether medications and dosages are appropriate or if they need to be changed based on the client’s current status.
Psychological testing is completed with each client within the first two weeks of their enrollment by our Psychologist, depending on their readiness. This testing consists of accepted and validated measures in addition to directed conversation with the psychologist. These evaluations aid in diagnosis and provide insight and awareness of client’s issues and concerns and help in directing treatment on an ongoing basis. If a client is having problems at school or work, or in personal relationships with others, tests can help a psychologist understand whether he or she might have issues with interpersonal skills or anger management, or certain personality traits that contribute to the problem. Other tests evaluate whether clients are experiencing emotional disorders such as anxiety or depression.
The underlying cause of a person’s problems isn’t always clear. For example, if a client is having difficulty in school, does she or he have a reading problem like dyslexia? An attention problem such as ADHD (attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder)? Difficulty with impulse control in normal situations? Psychological addiction assessments and tests allow a psychologist to understand the nature of the problem, and to figure out the best way to go about addressing it in treatment.
Corner Canyon’s medical team completes a thorough physical exam on each new client within 24 hours of admission. The purpose of this exam is to determine if the client has any physical concerns or issues and is healthy enough to participate in programming.
Each client completes a thorough psychosocial evaluation with their primary therapist within 72 hours of admission. The purpose of this is to reach an understanding of the client’s history and family history and to focus treatment on their therapeutic concerns and issues. This comprehensive addiction assessment including an evaluation of needs and risk. The assessment of needs is designed to identify those personal psychological and environmental (social) factors that might explain a client’s behavior.
The psychosocial approach looks at individuals in the context of the combined effect that psychological factors and the contextual social environment have on their mental and physical wellness and their ability to function appropriately in their lives.