Psychiatry is the medical specialty devoted to diagnosing, preventing, and treating mental disorders. These include various maladaptations related to mood, behavior, cognition, and perceptions. See glossary of psychiatry.

Psychiatric assessment of a person typically begins with a case history and mental status examination. Physical examinations and psychological tests may be conducted. Neuroimaging or other neurophysiological techniques may also be used. Mental disorders are often diagnosed under clinical concepts listed in diagnostic manuals. The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD) is edited and used by the World Health Organization (WHO). The widely used Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) is published by the American Psychiatric Association (APA). The fifth edition of the DSM (DSM-5) was published in 2013. It included more up-to-date research and re-organized the larger categories of various diseases.

Nowadays, psychiatric treatment usually involves a combination of psychiatric medication and psychotherapy. Modern practice also includes a wide variety of other modalities. These include assertive community treatment, community reinforcement, and supported employment. Treatment depends on the severity of functional impairment or other aspects of the disorder. It may be delivered on an inpatient or outpatient basis. An inpatient may be treated in a psychiatric hospital. Research and treatment within psychiatry as a whole are conducted on an interdisciplinary basis (e.g., with epidemiologists, mental health counselors, nurses, psychologists, public health specialists, radiologists or social workers).


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