As with many physical illnesses, the exact cause of most mental disorders is not known. However, just as with a physical illness, where the presence of the problematic symptom is usually associated with distinct changes in one’s bodily systems (cardiovascular, endocrine, etc.), the presence of emotional distress is often associated with changes in one’s neurochemistry. Which causes which still remains a mystery. Nevertheless, emotional problems, such as depression, may therefore be considered both biological as well as psychological problems. As such, research on intervention for emotional disorders generally shows that, especially when an emotional disorder is severe, both psychiatric medication and psychotherapy is indicated.
Dr. Helfgott regularly works with clients who are already taking medication for their depression, anxiety or other emotional problems. The psychotherapy Dr. Helfgott practices aims to address and alleviate the psychological causes and maintaining factors of the emotional problem. Additionally, he will work with his clients to help identify and adjust the aspects of a person’s life which contribute to the emotional problem and/or which have resulted from the person being worried by their issues. Occasionally, Dr. Helfgott may even suggest a psychiatric consultation to determine if medication could be helpful, particularly with very serious problems.