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Psychiatry

Psychiatry is a broad medical specialty, which covers a whole range of mental health disorders.

Psychiatry is a broad medical specialty, which covers a whole range of mental health disorders.

Our Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist is experienced in treating a broad range of psychiatric disorders, which include organic psychiatric disorders, schizophrenia, depressive disorders, bipolar affective disorder, anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, personality disorders, alcohol and substance misuse disorders, and neurodevelopmental disorders, such as Asperger’s Syndrome and ADHD.

Our consultant has a special interest in Bioidentical Hormone Therapy. It is known that testosterone in men and oestrogen and progesterone in women (as well as other hormones) impact very significantly on mood, anxiety, memory, and sleep.  Our consultant therefore takes a holistic approach, measuring patients’ hormones and balancing them wherever possible. This intervention can be used instead of or as well as prescribing medication.

Below is an at-a-glance list of the conditions our consultant sees regularly:

  • Depressive disorders
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Bi-polar affective disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Personality disorders
  • Drug and alcohol misuse 
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

From a hormonal perspective our consultant also treats:

  • Premenstrual Syndrome
  • Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder
  • Postnatal Depression
  • Perimenopause
  • Menopause
  • Andropause in men.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Our Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist here at BMI St Edmunds Hospital is seeing more and more patients who present with ADHD in adulthood.

Patients may present with a feeling of ‘something always not been quite right but couldn’t put their finger on it’. Comments like ‘daydreaming at school, couldn’t concentrate’ are common. It is a condition that may get missed during childhood, presents in adulthood, and starts to interfere with a person’s day-to-day life. Often, these patients present with another mental disorder but, in a lot of cases, the underlying cause of their symptoms is ADHD.

The reason we see more cases is due to society generally becoming more aware of the condition. Before, it was an area which has been under-diagnosed, whereas in the USA it is much more prominent.

Patients may seek an assessment because they have read about the condition and think they have it themselves. More people are looking for help for the condition.

Females tend to be missed more in childhood as they often don’t tend present with hyperactivity and therefore don’t misbehave at school. Closer inspection, however, reveals they would daydream and not absorb information in class.

Symptoms of ADHD in adulthood can include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Poor concentration and focus
  • Distractibility
  • Impulsivity.

Patients with ADHD tend to struggle with the demands of everyday life. They tend to take on too much, struggle to cope, and feel overwhelmed.

They may present with low mood, anxiety, and sleep problems. Only when you dig deeper you may find that a patient has attention issues, can’t concentrate or focus, and in the workplace they may not be achieving tasks or getting things done. As a result, bosses may be frustrated because they are a bit ‘all over the place’ and can't take on too much information.

The good news, however, is that ADHD is very treatable with medication, and dramatic results can be achieved.

Depression and Anxiety

These are very common conditions we see here at BMI St Edmunds Hospital, and patients present with:

  • Low mood
  • Low energy
  • Low motivation
  • Low self-esteem
  • Low self confidence
  • Poor sleep
  • Disruptive appetite - either impaired or comfort eating
  • Poor concentration – they feel like they cannot face the day
  • Intermittent thoughts of suicide. 

Our consultant will see the patient for about 45 minutes, where a really detailed history will be taken. This history is much more detailed than any other specialty in medicine, as it will cover their childhood, development, school life, their relationships, their jobs and more.

Our consultant will also take a mental state examination, which is a snapshot view of how the patient is presenting at the time we see them – this is in terms of their mood, anxiety, sleep, thoughts, and negative thinking.

At the end of the appointment, our consultant will let the patient know what they think in terms of a diagnosis, and they will come up with a plan together, including treatment. The consultant will then write a report, and send it to the patient’s GP, detailing what happened during the appointment.

With a new patient, the consultant may ask the GP to do routine blood tests to check thyroid function, or kidney or liver function, as these may have an impact on how the patient is presenting and, as a result, may impact on their mental state. This may be done to check there is nothing underlying, but it’s really all about the assessment, says our consultant. When a hormonal condition is suspected, blood tests will include measuring hormones. 

One treatment area available to the patient is hormone therapy. We often see patients, particularly women, whose mood and anxiety are affected by the menstrual cycle and sometimes just finetuning the hormones with bioidentical hormone replacement therapy can be enough to have a significant impact on their mental state.

Elsewhere, treatment consists of medication and therapy in most cases, usually CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy).

Our consultant will liaise with therapists in the area to take on the patient, and then the consultant's role is to oversee their treatment to prescribe medication and to review their progress, their response to medication and their response to therapy. 

There is a wealth of reasons to choose BMI St Edmunds Hospital for psychiatry, including the fact it is in a convenient location and is therefore easily accessible to people in the local area.

Here are some, at-a-glance reasons why you might choose BMI St Edmunds Hospital for your initial consultation:

  • Reduced waiting times – Patients who visit BMI St Edmunds Hospital can benefit from shorter waiting times and treatment, than if, for example, they were to wait for treatment on the NHS.
  • Flexible appointments – You can choose a psychiatry appointment time to suit you and your schedule; in some cases, remote consultations will be offered.
  • Consultant-led appointments – Your appointment will be consultant-led, and you will see the same person each time – from your consultation, right through to any treatment needed.
  • Patient satisfaction and personalised care – In an independent survey* in 2020, 99% of our patients said they would recommend BMI St Edmunds Hospital. *Results were compiled by healthcare agency, Quality Health.  

People visit BMI St Edmunds Hospital for psychiatry consultations and treatment from a wealth of places. These include Norfolk, Cambridgeshire, Essex, and the American air bases.

Locally, people visit from Cavendish, Kersey and Lavenham to name just a few places.  

You can book an appointment with our Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist by using our handy online booking system

Specialists offering Psychiatry

Dr Rachel Jones

Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist

Membership of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, MBBS

BMI St Edmunds Hospital

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Dr Richard O'Flynn

Consultant Psychiatrist

MB, BS (Lond) FRCPsych

BMI St Edmunds Hospital

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