These days we think about the mind quite differently than even ten years ago.
I agree with neuroscientists who argue that the mind emerges from the physical matter of the brain. Thus, beneficial alterations in the brain activity directly change the mind. The brain is neuroplastic: it can change like no other organ in the body. A psychiatrist can use medications and/or psychotherapy to help a patient stimulate healthy brain remodelling by connecting or modifying new nerve pathways. This will change firing patterns and lead to better, more balanced functioning of the brain, nervous system, and body.
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”–Benjamin Franklin
There are the many healthy things you can do for yourself to prevent illness and promote mental wellness.
I fully support a whole food diet, gluten-free optimally, essential fatty acid balanced, with Vitamin D in the winter; I encourage physical exercise, relaxation, sobriety from mind altering substances, and regular social contact. It is my commitment to you that I will deliver the best, most evidence-based medical treatment, and it is my expectation that you strive hard to live the healthiest life you are able. Thus, when what you are doing for yourself needs a little medical care to get you back on track, I will gladly assist.
I only see patients by referral from their family doctor to the Intake Service of Nanaimo Mental Health and Substance Use Service.
I begin with a formal consultation, during which I collect basic information, conduct a mental status examination, administer a standardized diagnostic interview, and make preliminary observations and treatment recommendations. A consult letter goes back to the referring family doctor. I commonly arrange for referrals within the Mental Health system in Nanaimo to counselors, case managers, and/or groups.
I often return the patient to their family doctor for ongoing care to try a series of medication trials. Sometimes I start a trial myself with the aim to get a good result within six months and then return the patient back to the family doctor. For more complex cases I stay on as the psychiatrist, typically to manage a difficult or unusual medication regimen. I plan to see these patients once every three to six months for a medication review and laboratory monitoring, or more frequently as negotiated and clinically indicated.
I cannot provide long-term psychotherapy in my practice because of my large caseload.
I am happy to email or telephone with patients for basic questions about treatment, side effects, or brief updates. I cannot engage in psychotherapeutic advice over email or phone.
Refills are preferably done in person during our follow-up visit. Alternately, your pharmacist can send a refill request to the office, and I can cover you until our next appointment.
FAQs for Current Patients
How can I get a hold of you?
If you are a current client of mine, feel free to call the office during business hours and speak with the admin staff. You can also email me; the address is on my card.
What do I do if you are on vacation?
Your family doctor receives a letter every time I see you and thereby remains completely up-to-date. I always update your doctor on medication changes. If you are in urgent need of a psychiatric medication review, usually they can help you out until I am back.
Why did I get sent back to my family doctor for ongoing mental health care?
I have a limited number of spots on my caseload; I carefully select whom I retain.