Testing and Assessment Services
Though it may sound intimidating, psychological testing is simply a way for us to diagnose what may be causing symptoms. This is very similar to what a medical doctor may do when running tests for a physical ailment. Through a combination of techniques performed by a licensed psychologist, testing helps us to determine a hypothesis for why a person may be distressed as well as to assess their behavior, capabilities and potential.
When it is suspected that an individual’s use of drugs or alcohol has moved beyond recreational use, substance abuse testing can provide the necessary facts. Testing is used to detect both psychological and physical signs of drug abuse. This usually involves a conversation regarding past drug use, along with with blood, urine or hair sample testing. The evaluation will help both the clinician and the patient assess what areas of his or her life have been affected by drug use and what changes can be made.
Educational testing is designed to provide information to a psychologist as to how an individual processes and works through information in an educational setting. They are used to determine any underlying disorders and the severity of impairment. Through this, we identify learning disabilities and problems with information processing or neurological dysfunction. We’ll determine how the disability may be impacting the individual and what they need to improve.
Often, mental health professionals are asked to screen patients prior to surgery to assess their ability to successfully rehabilitate after the surgery is performed. A successful surgery does not rely on the skill of the surgeon alone. The patient’s emotional and health-related behaviors, and ability to comply with a treatment regimen, play a big role in the effectiveness of the procedure. Our office works with others in the medical profession to ensure that patients are given the type of treatments they are most likely to be able to handle emotionally as well as to reduce risk that their physical or psychological conditions are made worse.
This is an evaluation that determines whether this type of surgery is appropriate for a patient at this point in time. Bariatric surgery requires that a patient significantly change their relationship with food and other behavioral changes. Patients are educated as to how they will need to change and it will be determined if they are healthy enough and psychologically ready for the surgery.
Geropsychiatry is a subspecialty that focuses on the physical and emotional health of senior adults. It concerns the psychiatric aspects of aging and related mental disorders. Often faced with changes in lifestyle, emotional loss and medical problems, this age group has unique psychological needs. An assessment may be used when behavior has changed that interferes with the care of a senior or their quality of life. The information gleaned from the assessment is used to help family and professional caregivers to create a plan to better meet their needs.
Memory testing is used to measure basic cognitive function with regards to short and long term recall. A clinical cognitive assessment may include an evaluation of attention, concentration, language processing and executive function.