Frequent Asked Questions of Dr. J. Cliff Green

The following are questions most often asked by patients who are considering  psychiatric evaluation and/or treatment.

What training do Psychiatrists undergo?

Psychiatrists go to Medical School and are Medical Doctors.  After Medical School they complete a Residency in Psychiatry like Surgeons, Obstetricians, etc.  A psychiatric residency lasts four years after medical school. Psychiatrists prescribe medication and do psychotherapy.  They do not usually do psychological testing but might ask a psychologist to do testing if the diagnosis is unclear.

What types of problems do you treat?

All types; including depression, anxiety disorders, panic attacks, marital problems, emotional problems that cause or aggravate physical symptoms, etc. Sometimes people think their concerns are not severe enough to see a psychiatrist but I see patients with problems that range from mild to severe, including some people who simply want to understand themselves better or have noticed that they are not as happy as they should be.  I only see individuals older than age 18.

What is your practice in regards to psychiatric medications?

Some patients prefer to just take medication. Others want to solve their problems using psychotherapy alone. I do either or both depending on the individual’s problems and wishes. Quite often what happens is that patients start by taking medication while they work on their problems in psychotherapy. When they have resolved the situation triggering their symptoms they stop the medication. Since I believe that it works best for the same individual to prescribe medication and do the psychotherapy, I do not prescribe medication for patients who are seeing other therapists.

What form of psychotherapy do you use?

Short-Term Psychotherapy. I learned how to do this form of treatment by working for a number of years with one of the best known short-term therapists. I use this form of psychotherapy because it shortens the overall time in treatment. For example, if someone’s problem would ordinarily take 20 sessions to resolve, STP would speed up the process so that only 5 – 10 sessions would be required. Another reason I use STP is that it is often effective when other types of psychotherapy e.g. Cognitive Behavior Therapy, etc. have not worked.