A question often posed to me by other professionals, parents or adult clients is – Why bother with an assessment or a diagnosis? I do not want a label for myself or my child. Please just fix the problem.
The only reason for an assessment and then diagnosis is because the appropriate treatment flows out of the diagnosis. If one treatment cured all life’s problems then there is no need for an assessment or a diagnosis.
Our clients always understand the need to obtain a correct diagnosis when their physical body is ill but may resist the idea when it comes to a mental/ emotional or behavioral issue. However, the same premise applies to the physical or emotional self; for example, the treatment for depression is very different than for post traumatic stress disorder. In fact, certain treatment options are contraindicated for certain disorders. The idea that one size fits all does not apply.
In order to obtain the appropriate diagnosis I do an in depth assessment. This assessment can cover the following: obtain and conduct a thorough review of past assessments, administer the correct assessment tool for the referral question being considered, an in-depth series of interviews at the beginning of the process, scoring and interpreting any measures administered, and formulating a conclusion and diagnosis. At times a thorough written report is needed to obtain certain services or funding; at other times this is not needed.
It does not matter why you are coming to see us: for individual therapy, relationship counselling, family therapy, parenting coaching or group sessions, we always conduct an in-depth assessment. So if you are seeing Dr. Penner or Dr. Smith through Ladysmith Assessment and Therapeutic Services rest assured that we do not offer a band-aid approach which can help in the short term but often leads to issues resurfacing over and over again. Our assessment approach leads to appropriate treatment and recommendations that will deal with unresolved historical issues and increase positive adaptive responses to the present problem.