Many families wanting a clinician, pediatrician, or psychiatrist for a particular diagnosis starts with the medical professional known to them. The family doctor or family therapist may refer to professionals (such as endocrinologists, neurologists, psychologists) able to perform formal testing to confirm or clarify a particular diagnosis. If investigating possible therapeutic disorders, (neuro)psychologists can perform tests to assess a differential diagnosis (ie mental or behavioral changes, depression, etc.), to provide a baseline of information against a particular treatment, reveal daily functioning (i.e., to understanding cognitive or behavioral treatment or types of therapy that could be needed)
Caveat: if a teen is seeing a clinician for assessment and diagnosis or having formal testing, the assumption is that the student is healthy (i.e., not intoxicated or on recreational drugs, is well rested), is somewhat interested and engaged in the 2-5 hours of testing.
For the purposes of this website, many treatment facilities which specialize in Diagnosis and Assessment provide clinical oversight and many have formal assessment pieces too, but the key difference is that the participant is not experiencing success in a home environment and is in an intentional residential or wilderness therapy setting, because the participant is not interested or engaged in their process. These settings allow for stabilization of the client to ensure the participant is psychiatrically and behaviorally stable before valid assessment and diagnosis can occur.
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