What habits do you have? Smoking? Biting your nails? Binge eating? Or maybe you tend to close yourself off from friends and family or avoid confrontation at work. The things you do every day that you think are just personality quirks may actually impact your mental and physical health.
The field of medicine that deals with this deep connection is called behavioral health therapy. Dr. Juli McBride, at Alpha Care Medical, uses an interdisciplinary approach to health care, which helps her see relationships between your behaviors and your overall well-being. And one of the highly effective ways she treats behavioural health issues is with psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy.
Behavioral health therapy explores the interactions between your behaviors and your physical and mental health.
For instance, if you habitually bite your nails, this would be described as a behavior. However, this behavior could be a symptom of a mental disorder, such as anxiety. And the anxiety could also be the cause of physical problems, such as stomach or digestive issues.
Substance abuse is another example of a behavioral health condition, because the behavior — such as taking drugs or drinking alcohol excessively — can lead to physical and mental issues, such as sleeplessness, loss of appetite, increased heart rate, depression, and anxiety.
Instead of medication, psychotherapy relies on conversations and an intimate exchange of ideas, feelings, and motivations to uncover the root causes of behaviors. If you’re experiencing the consequences of certain mental, physical, or emotional behaviors, Dr. McBride may be able to help you regain control over those habits and, therefore, reduce or eliminate your symptoms.
Psychotherapy is a joint effort between you and Dr. McBride, and it’s only effective if you commit to the process and have a desire to overcome your harmful behaviors. For example, if you suffer from gastrointestinal problems due to high levels of stress in your life, Dr. McBride can help you identify the sources and manage your stress in a healthy way. In this way, behavioral health practices can help solve both problems, the social skill of managing stress and the physical problem in your gut.
If you’re struggling with addiction, obesity, diabetes, relationship issues, stress, or chronic pain, you’re a good candidate for behavioral health therapy. When you have your initial consultation with Dr. McBride, she’ll get to know you, your health history, and the medical and mental issues you struggle with. Then, she’ll develop a treatment plan, which may include psychotherapy, to address your unique set of circumstances and symptoms.
To schedule your first conversation, book an appointment over the phone with Alpha Care Medical today.