Mental health: Questions to ask

Last updated: Monday, April 29, 2024

The diverse range of clinical problems in patients with mental health conditions means that it's not possible to provide a shortlist of suitable questions to ask when problem solving. However, if you are being asked to recommend the preferred choice of therapy for an individual patient, then two particularly helpful questions are:

  • Ask the prescriber what they would usually use.
  • Find out whether the patient has tried anything before, and if it was successful and/or tolerated.

This will give you a starting point for problem solving and help to rule out less clinically appropriate options.

Other tutorials on this site such as the questions sections on Adverse reactions or Interactions may help you in certain circumstances. Of course, you'll want to check the patient's drug history and medical history, and if you're being asked about the use of a specific medicine you'll need the indication, dose, frequency, route of administration and expected duration of treatment: our guide to general questions to ask when problem solving may also help you.

The 'questions to ask' from every tutorial on this site have been brought together into a Quick Question Guide that you may want to download for future reference.