School Counselors and School Psychologists have a tough job. One of the most difficult challenges is determining when it’s time to get another professional involved. Dealing with children who may be going through a divorce, severe depression or mental incapacities requires great listening skills and the ability to take action when needed.
There are signs for counselors and psychologists to acknowledge when trying to decide if a patient might be dangerous and to know when additional help is needed.
3 Signs It’s Time to Involve Another Professional:
- Violent anger. Everyone handles anger differently. Some patients internalize, while others lash out. Violent anger is dangerous not only for the patient, but for others around them and involved in their life. Early intervention is important to protecting all parties involved and to helping your patient grow and mature. Anger management classes and additional therapy may be needed to help your patient sort out their anger issues to move past the root cause.
- Suicidal thoughts and behavior. Whenever a patient mentions suicidal thoughts or even makes casual references to suicide, it is essential to get other professionals involved immediately. These are far too serious to be taken lightly. The cause may be hormonal imbalances, a disorder or depression. No matter what the cause, when a patient is suicidal gaining the help of other industry professionals is vital for getting your patient back on track quickly.
- Odd behavior. People can be quirky, and every situation is different, but it is important that psychologists and counselors take note of odd behavior that goes beyond average adolescent eccentricities. Knowing each patient and forming personal relationships makes it easier to identify any sudden or gradual changes in behavior. Sudden depression, a drop in interest in life, and substance abuse could all be indicators that it is time to get another professional involved.
Keeping note of these behaviors is important in determining patterns and accurate records to make treatment easier. Mental health liability insurance is a necessity for school counselors and school psychologists. You never know what you may encounter in this field, and mental health liability insurance makes it easier for you to focus on your patients without the added stress of the “what ifs” of your career.
Liability is an unnecessary worry that can be prevented with the right type of liability insurance. At the end of the day, the students are what matters most, so you shouldn’t be worried about your professional liability insurance policy.
If you are a school counselor or psychologist: What is the most difficult situation you have dealt with in your career and how did you handle it?