Riverview Community Mental Health Blog

Dozen of articles | Mental health blog to improve your lifestyle now!

close up of a couple's hands finger locking

Mental Illness and Relationships

Many people across the United States and beyond have healthy, strong, supportive
relationships, even despite mental illness in one or both partners. While this can sound
somewhat hard to believe, it really comes down to both people being open and honest with the
other about their strengths, weaknesses, and struggles within their relationship. This way people can lean on each other.

The most important thing to know when it comes to mental health and
relationships is taking the steps to learn how to manage mental illness and promote sustainable habits.

Do I Need To Tell Others About My Mental Illness?

It is understandable to see why many people would be hesitant to share with their friends and/
or their significant other that they suffer from any sort of mental illness or disability.

As many probably already know, beginning any relationship or friendship while hiding a piece of
your identity can only lead to an unhealthy relationship and undoubtedly increased secrecy and
poor trust.

This isn’t to say that you have to share any health information on your first date or
upon meeting a new friend, but moreover that when both of you feel the relationship is
progressing into a more of long-term relationship it becomes more important to share this

Close friends and partners will want to support you with your illness, but also
need to be aware should any sort of episode or situation arise.

Mental Illness

How Will My Condition Affect My Relationships?

Mental health and relationships very much go hand in hand as they can have a drastic affect on
each other.

An unhealthy or abusive relationship with a significant other can lead to poor
mental health and even depression, suicide or PTSD. On the other hand, entering into a
healthy, loving relationship when you are already struggling with any sort of mental illness can
turn the relationship sour very quickly. So, how do we strive for both good mental health and
good relationships?

  • Exercise – Maintaining physical health directly relates to your mental health. Exercising
    regularly has shown to improve stress levels, overall mood, as well as anxiety and
    even PTSD.
  • Talk to a Doctor – If you’ve never actually been diagnosed with a mental illness, but you can feel
    yourself changing or acting in a way that feels unusual to you, it can’t hurt to talk to
    a doctor. There are several therapies, medications, and strategies to help you cope
    rather than doing it alone.
  • Counseling or Therapy – Whether or not you have or haven’t been diagnosed with a mental illness, counseling or therapy can always be helpful for both mental and overall emotional
  • Nutrition – Several studies have shown the importance of a well-balanced diet and the major
    effects it can have on your overall health, including mental health. Talking to a
    nutritionist about your specific struggles can really help to maximize your overall

Overall taking care of your mental health is crucial to maintaining successful relationships and
friendships throughout your life.

Siloutte of woman jogging in profile with a golden skyline in the background

Exercise Boosts Health and Promotes Improved Mental Functioning

Exercise Can Improve Mental Health?

Exercise can provide so many benefits including weight loss, improved physical health, and can even help to reverse or heal many ailments. However, there are additional benefits beyond these that come with physical activity as well. There have been several studies showing the vast mental health benefits of exercise in several ways.

How Can Exercise Improve Mental Health?                              exercise

People choose to exercise for a variety of reasons. Many people want to trim their
waistline and improve their overall physique and muscle tone, but the other benefits
can be an unexpected surprise bonus. These benefits can involve relieving stress,
improved memory, better sleep, and an improvement in overall mood and positivity. All
of these can have drastic favorable effects on your mental health as a whole such as
relieving symptoms of depression, ADHD, PTSD, stress, and anxiety.

Depression & PTSD Benefits

Some of the most common mental health issues that can be improved and mitigated
through physical activity are depression and PTSD. Several studies show that exercising even
as little as 15 minutes a day can reduce the risk of developing major depression.
Additionally, it is scientifically proven that exercise releases endorphins, a chemical that
makes us feel good, in our body that help to improve our mood and outlook on life.
PTSD relates to the nervous system producing a response to experiencing severe
trauma. This response can include anger, tension, stress, and more. It is believed that
exercises using repetitive motions or cross movements such as running, rowing a boat,
etc can help the brain to recover from that nervous system response.

Stress & Anxiety Benefits

Stress and anxiety are incredibly frequent in millions of people throughout the world.
These can come about from specific events or activities such as a stressful job, a toxic
relationship, abuse, and beyond. Endorphins from exercise can certainly help to relieve
stress and anxiety, but there are also studies that have been done to show that the
rhythm of exercising can bring mental health benefits as well. Focusing on your feet
hitting the ground, or your breathing while exercising can allow your brain to really
focus and be mindful which can then dull the overwhelming worry or anxiety in your

As a whole, it is common knowledge that exercise is good for you and your body. The
additional benefits of relieving stress and anxiety and possibly appeasing depression
and/or PTSD. We highly recommend finding whatever type of exercise routine works
best for you, and sticking to it as best as possible to see great results physically and


The Benefits of Exercise for Well-Being

Benefits of Exercise             benefits of exercise

Everyone knows that there are many beneficial physical effects on the body when it comes to exercise. Those that add exercise to their daily routines typically have lower BMI, lower blood pressure, more energy, and a decreased risk of getting diabetes. Not many people think of the psychological effects that exercise has on the body, though! Regular exercise can help to mitigate symptoms of depression and anxiety disorders, along with keeping your memory up to par!

There are five main benefits of exercise when it comes to the psychological impact of exercise on the body. So, next time, choose the stairs over the elevator or your comfortable walking shoes over the short car ride!

Here are a few examples of the benefits of exercise

  1. Increase your self-esteem. When one begins to see more muscle, less fat, and weight loss, self-confidence goes up to an all-time high! Weight loss and shopping for new clothes may not have been your prime goal, and you may even see a change happening before you even realize the cause. 
  2. Give your brain a boost. Regular cardio exercise helps to create new brain cells and improves the overall performance of the brain. In addition to this, it even helps to strengthen the hippocampus, resulting in better memory and less cognitive decline. Creativity and mental energy go through the roof!
  3. Stress Relief. Regular exercise helps to decrease stress levels, making us have a better overall sense of wellbeing. Increasing the heart rate actually helps to reverse stress-induced damage to the brain by hormone stimulation. Mood, cognition, and thinking processes improve.
  4. Sleep better. Regular exercise increases the body’s temperature, which induces a calming effect on the mind. This results in falling asleep quicker, and for longer periods of time. Our “built-in alarm clock” is also regulated, helping us to control when we feel tired versus awake and alert. It is best to exercise throughout the day, and not close to bedtime.
  5. Decrease the effects of depression and anxiety. Exercise definitely improves the mood, which helps to decrease the symptoms that both depression and anxiety have on our mental state. Endorphin levels rise, and feelings of happiness and euphoria are released. Regular exercise may be the key to feeling a bit better!

Exercise has drastic effects on your mental health and overall well being, as well as all of the physical effects that can be seen. While seeing results is important for those with a knack for aesthetics, it is just as important to FEEL the results. Over time, one will feel better overall, both physically and mentally, by incorporating regular exercise into their daily lives.

woman seated in neurostar chair with doctor standing near

TMS Therapy for Depression

TMS Therapy For Depression Has Proven Remarkable Results                                        TMS Therapy for depression

TMS, or Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, was introduced in 1985 as a way to treat many different psychiatric disorders and was FDA approved for the treatment of depression in 2008. One of the most common disorders that it is used to treat is major depression. The clinician administering the treatment is able to stimulate specific areas of the brain painlessly. It is a non-invasive form of treatment that has proven to be successful for most!

During a TMS treatment session, the clinician places a magnetic coil over the patient’s head and ensures that the machine is calibrated perfectly for that particular patient. The magnetic fields are directed to the area of the brain thought to be the root cause of depression. No anesthesia or sedation is needed, and the patient remains alert during the course of treatment.

TMS Therapy is:

  • Covered by most insurance plans
  • Drug-free
  • Non-invasive

Almost seven percent of the world’s population suffers from depression. There is various treatment available, but even with them, up to thirty percent of those that take part in these treatments don’t find relief from their symptoms. Normally, doctors prescribe traditional therapy sessions and antidepressants for depressed patients; they may also prescribe a regimen for a more active lifestyle.

While most patients will achieve relief from their symptoms and can function, they don’t have a better quality of life. They are medicated, but not in full remission from their condition.

If these methods don’t work for the patient, the patient may seem helpless and stop seeking treatment in fear of another failed experience. Or, they may look into TMS therapy on their own. Those that do will have a better chance of reaching the complete remission that they are longing for.

Jumping straight to TMS Therapy for depression and skipping that traditional route all together may be ideal for some patients. TMS therapy is a great option for those that feel the traditional method may not be a good fit for them, and shouldn’t only be considered when everything else fails.

TMS can be used to treat major depression with a high rate of success. Immediately after treatment, the patient can go about their day-to-day activities. Some patients prefer this method of treatment from the beginning, as there are no systemic side effects as there typically are with antidepressants. TMS therapy for depression can have a positive impact on the patient, and suffering can be reduced.

TMS therapy for depression has been studied multiple times, and now has a special curriculum that is based on evidence for remission and relapse prevention. With over a million treatments administered worldwide, it certainly seems to be an effective form for treatment for depression.

Additionally, the patient won’t have any negative side effects of medication! IT is FDA approved, and a session can last as little as 19 minutes before the patient is back on their feet and ready to tackle the rest of the day.

In addition to TMS therapy for depression, there is ongoing research on the use of TMS to treat PTSD, anxiety, OCD,  and other mental health conditions.

TMS therapy can be effective on its own or combined with counseling for patients who do not want to use antidepressants or have not found medications to be helpful combined with medication management and counseling.

Our caring staff at Riverview Mental Health Center is highly skilled in administering TMS Therapy, and we are happy to answer any questions you may have prior to beginning this treatment.  Call us today at our Stuart or Port Saint Lucie location to schedule a consultation and find out if TMS therapy for depression may be the right treatment for you.



Psychiatry Near Me

Things to Look for in Psychiatry Near Me

“Psychiatry Near Me” Is Often The Most Common Search When Looking Online For Mental Health Services        Psychiatry Near Me

It may feel like a difficult task to find a good psychiatric facility if you are feeling symptoms of PTSD, anxiety, depression, or other common mental health illnesses. There are many factors to consider when you are looking for psychiatry services. It is always most important to keep in mind that the doctor is there to help you, and will not judge you. If you feel that you don’t have a good relationship with the psychiatrist that you choose, their assistance will be minimal.

It is important to be able to connect with the professional in order to achieve the results that you desire. Look into different doctors before making the decision to see one exclusively. They should be willing to consult with you before jumping into treatment.

Referrals are important! If you look on Google in the general search field for “psychiatry near me,” you will find many different doctors that will seem to be able to help you, but there are also reviews! Take a peek at what other people have to say about them. Of course, a better form of referral is a referral from your primary physician, or friends and family members that have seen them in the past. It is great to go to someone that you know has helped someone that you are familiar with, and they are willing to refer them to you based on their services.

Some insurance companies even require a referral from your primary physician in order to cover the expenses related to your sessions with the psychiatrist. Take a moment to check with your insurance company to see if this is a requirement so you don’t end up with a hefty bill.

In some cases, when you search for “psychiatry near me,” there may only be a few that pop up. This depends on where you live, as there is a shortage of practicing psychiatrists nationwide. This is especially true in rural areas. If this happens, search for telepsychiatry. Telepsychiatry is a great option for you to get the treatment that you need, without the travel expenses. It is just as effective as a traditional session and is ideal for those that don’t have services offered near them. It can be done from home, or through your doctor’s office. Some insurance companies cover this, while others do not.

Through the Affordable Care Act, most small private and group insurance plans have to cover mental health services. If you have health insurance, it is most likely that mental health services are covered with the exception of your normal copayments.

There are also psychiatrists that do not accept health insurance at all. Based on percentages, only 48% accept it in the North East, 57% in the West, 43% in the South, and the Midwest leads with 88% of psychiatrists accepting insurance for payment.  If you live in an area where most psychiatrists don’t accept insurance, it is important to compare prices. Some may charge a lot compared to others in the area. Shop around, and look into the medical professionals in your area. 

After doing your research with Google and referrals, the next step is to look into the credentials of the psychiatrists that have made your list. Make sure they are licensed and board-certified. If the referral came from your current doctor, chances are they are. But, if the referral came from a relative or friend, it is important to make sure that they are still certified and license to practice in your state.

You can contact the Board of Psychiatry to find out. Unfortunately, anyone can create a website these days and add a title to the end of their name, so doing your due diligence will ensure that you get a high level of care.

Next- meet them! Set up a consultation with psychiatrists that have made the cut in order to get a feel for them and discuss your mental health concerns. 

This appointment will ensure that you can work with the doctor before you make a commitment to care as a treatment plan. Good psychiatrists will want to get to know you first, too! Payment arrangements should also be discussed. This meeting typically serves as an interview, with you being the interviewer. If anything seems off or you don’t believe the doctor is right for you, stop and continue on your search.

A good psychiatrist needs great observation and listening skills. They really need to pay attention and take what you are saying into account in order to get the most out of the session. If they don’t notice when you are feeling anxious or depressed, they aren’t going to be able to effectively treat the condition that you are suffering from. They also need to be aware of any side effects or symptoms that you show from medications that they prescribe, as they may not be the best fit for you. Other options are always available.

Communication is different for everyone, and you need to be sure that you mesh well with your doctor. Their communication style needs to fit with yours so you can understand each other. If you feel that they aren’t communicating effectively, let them know and give them a chance to change their style. If it doesn’t work, move on.

Your psychiatrist should take the time to educate you and your family about the condition at hand. They shouldn’t just listen and prescribe medication. They need to dive deep into it, you can develop a treatment plan with them and be willing to educate you on the methods that will be used for treatment. You also need to be aware of your medication and the side effects that you may incur. A good doctor will tell you what to expect upfront, without leaving you to learn on your own.

A good psychiatrist needs to be empathetic. They won’t dismiss your feelings or emotions, and they will listen to what you have to say and observe your actions in regard to it.

Your psychiatrist should be knowledgeable about a wide range of mental illnesses. Many symptoms can be indicators of more than one type of illness and it is their job to determine what one you are really suffering from. Without a broad knowledge of the mental illness, they won’t be able to effectively diagnose your condition and treat it. They should also be aware of different therapies and medications so they can come up with the ideal treatment plan for you as an individual.

The psychiatrist that you pick should offer various types of treatment, especially when it comes to medications. Although some medications can take up to two months to show signs of improvement, the psychiatrist should have an alternate plan if you go several months without feeling any relief. Your opinions regarding treatment should matter, and if you experience any negative side effects, you should entertain the option of a change in treatment.

How regularly you see the psychiatrist also matters. If you are stable and responding favorably to treatment, you may be able to go up to three months without an appointment. If treatment is just starting or symptoms are in full force, the patient may be seen more often. For this reason, it should be easy to make an appointment with your doctor. Mental illnesses are oftentimes unpredictable. You may feel fine one week, and be suffering from severe depression the next. It is important to b able to see your doctor often during these times.

If you aren’t happy with your treatment for any reason at all, don’t be afraid to make a change! You need to have trust in your doctor and also need to feel completely comfortable with them in order for treatment to be effective. It is more important to respond well to treatment than to stick with a doctor that you feel stuck with. Do what is best for you and look into other options if this is the case.

If you feel that you may be suffering from a mental health illness, it is important to begin searching for psychiatry near me. Contacting a medical professional is the first step to creating a happy, healthier you. When you find a psychiatrist, set up a consultation to ensure they are a good fit and that all of your needs will be met. This may take a bit of time, so starting the process early will ensure results in a timely manner.

When you type in that Google search “psychiatry near me”, keep these tips in mind, and be sure to find a provider that you trust.

individual counseling

Individual Counseling – 5 Amazing Benefits

Get the support you need with individual counseling

Medical professionals have been assisting people by providing individual counseling sessions for numerous years. Individual counseling has many advantages and benefits that will help those that take part in their daily lives. 

Individual counseling is a more personalized session that really digs deep and addresses the client’s specific problems. A plan can be drawn in order to coincide with a specific recommendation, and include tailored treatment options for the situation.

Below are the top five benefits of individual counseling:

  1. Regain a sense of self-control. Individual counseling helps the patient develop positive behaviors to use in their day-to-day activities. It helps to get the patient to a level where they are ready to take on more responsibility when it comes to their lives and confront challenges that would otherwise make them feel hopeless or helpless.
  2. Improve relationships with loved ones. Individual counseling helps to address issues within relationships, which creates a fresh outlook. Relationships improve with friends, loved ones, and the community as a whole. The patient is better able to interact with those around them and may choose to take part in social gatherings more often.
  3. Confront addictive behaviors. Individual therapy helps the patient get specific advice when it comes to substance abuse, eating disorders, relationship issues, and alcoholism. There is no cookie-cutter method when it comes to confronting these behaviors, but when the sole focus is on you individually, you achieve better results.
  4. Relate and address emotional hindrances. Individuals sometimes act irrationally without even realizing that they are doing it. Individual therapy can help with ways to deal with emotional challenges in a better manner, without giving in to anger or depression. This will result in better communication skills and better interactions with others.
  5. Develop fresh ideas about life. Individual therapy helps to create a positive mindset and acquire useful techniques for patients to deal with patterns of depression, anxiety, and other destructive behaviors and thoughts. Learning various techniques can assist when times get hard and help the patient cope a bit better.

Consulting a professional for an individual counseling session is a great step toward a better life and a better quality of life. While group and family therapy sessions are helpful, it is also important to focus completely on yourself.

No matter what is troubling you, individual therapy sessions are beneficial. With programs designed specifically for you, you can be sure that the session will provide great resources, techniques, and advice to help you put your best foot forward.

Individual counseling is the most common type of therapy that people take part in. Many different treatment styles are utilized depending on the situation and the medical professional of your choosing.

When the client and the professionals have the time to focus on each other in an individualized setting, rapport and trust are built. This, along with the techniques used, are a recipe for success.

The safe, confidential, and caring office that you choose will prove to be a great resource for you to achieve the results that you desire.

 One in six people will experience some degree of depression at some time in their life. Individual counseling or talk therapy can be used to treat many types of mental illness issues and emotional difficulties. The goal of psychotherapy is to control troubling symptoms so the patient can function better.

A trained therapist can help people make positive lifestyle changes and identify the causes of symptoms. In time a good therapist can provide strategies to change unwanted thoughts and behaviors. Therapy can equip people with the skills to manage symptoms, reduce anxiety, shame, fear, and stress and improve their quality of life. 

medication management therapy

What is The Best Medication Management Therapy

Medication Management Therapy

Medical professionals are available to provide both assessments and medication management for those suffering from mental illnesses. Although it is a service offered, most do not know what it actually means.

For those that have never had to take any psychiatric medications in the past, it can seem a bit scary. This is the same for those that have had bad reactions in the past, or if you are unsure if what you are prescribed is really helping your symptoms.

When it comes to medications for mental illness, there is a lot that is unknown at first, but this is where the medical professional can help. It helps to learn what medication management therapy actually means, and to know what to expect with the treatment process. Understanding both symptoms and medications is the first step to proper treatment for mental health symptoms.

Mental well-being affects our overall state of physical health. When one feels stressed or experiences trauma, it can leave them anxious and overwhelmed. These feelings can snowball into more severe psychological and even physical illnesses. Addictive and destructive behaviors can occur.

It is important to have a physical annually, and just as important to take a moment for a mental health check as well. A medical professional can perform a mental health check, or an assessment, to provide an overview of your mental state. If there are symptoms that need treatment, medications can be administered. Discussion assists in finding the root of mental health needs.

After the assessment, the medical professional comes up with a treatment plan that is designed specifically for the patient. They outline the actions, uses, and side effects that may occur from medications that are suggested. The patient then agrees to the plan and is observed during a trial period to ensure that the medication is working properly.

Different patients may have different reactions to medications that are prescribed, which is why managing the medications is so important. It takes careful monitoring and ongoing discussions to ensure that the medications used are the right fit. It is also important to consult the medical professional before adding any additional medications to your daily routine, as medications have different reactions when mixed with others.

Psychiatric Medication Management Therapy

Using prescription medications comes with the risk of side effects. These effects are discussed in detail, as well as the benefits of using the medication itself. Not all patients will need medicines, but there are specific cases where medications are involved in the best course of treatment in order to relieve the patient’s symptoms.

When treating depression, bipolar disorder, sleep problems, anxiety, panic, ADD, and schizophrenia, medication management therapy is often the most effective treatment option.

When medications are prescribed, it is important to take the right dosage, at the right time. Follow the instructions completely, and don’t stop taking the medication without consulting the medical professional that prescribed it. Before adding any medications, ensure that there are no interactions with those that are currently prescribed.

Having a good routine for medication management therapy is key to ensuring that the medications are functioning the best that they can, in order to help the patient live their best life possible with the least amount of symptoms.

We at Riverview Community Mental Health Center understand that everyone has different needs. We will create a psychiatric medication management therapy plan tailored to your specific needs.

Our thorough approach to medication management involves carefully evaluating both your physical and mental health before changing or adding new psychiatric medications. In some cases, this will include ordering lab tests to pinpoint underlying medical conditions that may be contributing to your mental health.

As specialists who treat all types of mental illness conditions, our clinicians understand that psychiatric medications may take some time and trial to be effective. Understanding these differences between medications allows us to optimize the pharmaceutical benefits and minimize any possible side effects.

Substance abuse

Why Outpatient Substance Abuse Programs Are Better

Outpatient Substance Abuse Programs

The mental health of an individual is affected when the habit of substance abuse takes the shape of disease and almost becomes unstoppable for the person affected.

Substance abuse is just one layer of what the person is experiencing. The dependency on the substance can cause one to suffer from Depression, Anxiety, Bipolar Disorder, and Schizophrenia. They also tend to take more risks, which could eventually lead to major health issues.

Some studies have shown that genetics play a role in how one deals with substance abuse, and if they will suffer from mental illness at the same time. It could also be determined by chemical deficiencies in the brain.

When serotonin is decreased, substance abuse and mental illness seem to go hand and hand.

Additionally, the environment a person is in also plays a huge role, which is why many are quick to think that locking someone in a rehabilitation facility or mental health institution is the best option. Inpatient mental health institutions and rehabilitation facilities work for some people. For others, they begin to feel trapped and abandoned by the family that placed them there.

They begin to see themselves as a burden and don’t understand that the family placed them there out of love for them, trying to keep them safe.

Many times, families don’t know about the positive effects of outpatient services for an individual suffering from substance abuse.

Most institutions have one way, or one program, that is used for everyone. They aren’t typically adjusted based on the needs of the abuser, and pharmaceuticals are often used as part of treatment.

The patient typically can’t leave the facility, which often makes them feel the urge to rebel when they get out. This results in additional hospitalizations and creates a cycle for some that the technique doesn’t work. While those that work in these facilities know the severity of the disease and the need to overcome it, the programs used are more dated and brick and mortar based.

With outpatient services, the patient still has the ability to function in society and go to family gatherings.

While getting the help they need from a professional, they are still getting their emotional needs met by those that support them on a day-to-day basis. This is a recipe for success. Most people that take part in outpatient programs have reduced hospitalizations and higher success rates than those locked in a room for hours at a time in an institution.

Overcoming substance abuse can be one of the hardest challenges a person will face in their lifetime

No matter how hard one tries to stop and how much willpower they have, there will always be a voice in the back of their mind, challenging their decision to be sober.

For this reason, intensive outpatient substance abuse programs are available to help those coping with the everyday battles of staying sober in a therapeutic, calming way. They know what you are going through, and are there to guide and help you every step of the way.

The program offers different methods and is individualized based on needs

Considering outpatient services over inpatient programs is a great opportunity to give yourself or one of your loved ones a second chance. The programs don’t make one feel attacked, and approach those needing assistance with the care and compassion that they deserve.

The substance abuse is treated, along with any mental disorders that may have stemmed from it in order to get the individual back on track to a healthy life. Short-term and long-term programs are options, so one will never feel alone in their journey of sobriety.