What to Expect from Your First Telemedicine Visit for Depression

Jul 01, 2023
What to Expect from Your First Telemedicine Visit for Depression
Telemedicine can help you connect with a mental healthcare provider and obtain essential services — all from the comfort of your own home. Learn what to expect from your first virtual visit for depression.

Depression is a relentless mood disorder that can take a serious toll on your mental health and physical well-being. Apart from causing feelings of hopelessness, disinterest, isolation, and despair, a chronic depression can: 

  • Interfere with your ability to sleep
  • Deplete your energy and vitality
  • Increase your chronic disease risk
  • Leave you in ongoing physical pain
  • Lead to a substance abuse problem
  • Prompt self-destructive behaviors
  • Hinder your personal relationships

Luckily, depression is also highly treatable. By offering telemedicine appointments, our skilled team at Northern Virginia Psychiatric Group in Fairfax, Virginia, strives to remove adverse barriers to mental healthcare, making depression treatment as accessible as possible to new and returning patients alike. 

Here’s what to expect during your first telemedicine visit for depression. 

Preparing for your appointment

Telemedicine — also known as telehealth — facilitates the online delivery of remote healthcare services via modern technology. Before your first telemedicine visit, make sure you have: 

  • A high-speed internet connection 
  • A computer, tablet, or smartphone
  • A web camera with a microphone
  • A quiet, distraction-free place to sit

At Northern Virginia Psychiatric Group, we aim to keep your telemedicine visit as stress-free as possible — even if you don’t consider yourself to be among the most tech-savvy of people, it shouldn’t take much effort to access our secure video conferencing platform. 

Technology preparation 

When we schedule your telehealth visit, we give you all the information you need, including how to access our secure web portal and whether you need to download an app in advance. It can be helpful to log in a day or two prior to your visit, just to be sure you feel confident about what to do on the day of your appointment.    

A quiet, private place 

If you live with others, it’s important to find a quiet, private space for your telemedicine visit. You want to feel comfortable sharing confidential, personal information with your provider without worrying that others in your household may overhear your conversation. Some of our patients conduct telehealth visits from their car, while others place a white noise machine by the door to their room to ensure seclusion. 

Questions and concerns

Just as you would prior to an in-person mental healthcare visit, it’s helpful to make a list of any concerns — from general questions and feelings you’ve been having to prescription inquiries and bothersome medication side effects — to ensure your session covers everything you’d like it to cover. 

Your initial mental health care visit 

Every telehealth visit — including your first appointment for depression treatment — is tailored to your individual needs and specific situation. In most cases, we begin with basic patient intake information: After reviewing your medical and mental health histories, we discuss your current symptoms and concerns. 

The rest of your telemedicine appointment is just like an in-person visit, but from the comfort of your own home. This means you can access all the same components of care we provide in our office, virtually. Depending on your needs, your visit may involve:

We dive as deeply as we can into your depression symptoms, exploring their root causes and triggers as well as your coping mechanisms. We also talk about your current medications in detail or go over medication options and benefits if you don’t have any prescriptions. 

Telemedicine visits have become a highly effective way for many people to receive mental healthcare for major depression as well as postpartum depression. It’s equally beneficial for those affected by bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD), and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). 

Virtual visits can also facilitate patient-provider connection for people who are working to manage attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or struggling with a co-occurring sleep disorder.   

Schedule a telehealth visit today

We offer telemedicine appointments to help you connect with — and stay connected to — our mental health experts, so you can obtain the mental health services you need when you need them, and preserve continuity of care anytime you can’t make it to our office for an in-person visit.  

To learn more or schedule a virtual visit with our team at Northern Virginia Psychiatric Group in Fairfax, Virginia, call or click online today.