Should I bring my child to see a psychologist or psychiatrist at Private Space Medical?

At our clinic, you need not worry about who to see first. Either a psychiatrist or child psychologist can do the assessment and diagnose the condition. Furthermore, we work closely as a team. So if the psychologist sees your child first and feels that a psychiatrist (medical doctor) needs to be involved in the treatment, we will arrange an early appointment for your child to see the doctor.

What are the benefits of consulting a healthcare professional at Private Space Medical?

We are a one-stop centre and we work closely as a team comprising psychiatrists (medical doctors), psychologists (clinical and educational psychologists) and therapists (parent-child, couple, family and art therapists). We provide assessment and treatment for a wide range of mental health problems including ADHD and its associated complications.
Our treatment approaches include medications, talk therapy, family therapy, art therapy, dietary supplements and lifestyle interventions. If necessary, we will write to schools, employers and the army to help them understand the needs of the child, youth and family.
We strive to support the family as a whole – to address the unique learning and emotional needs of every child and to empower parents to do the same. Each of our staff had spent many years working in large public hospitals, gaining wide experience and deep expertise before joining our clinic.
We are also open 7 days a week (except public holidays). Your care is our utmost priority.

What is the difference between a psychiatrist and psychologist?

A psychiatrist is a medical doctor who received specialist training in mental health and mental disorders. A psychiatrist’s qualifications include a medical degree, such as a Bachelor’s in Medicine and Surgery, and a Master’s degree in Psychiatry. In Singapore, psychiatrists are accredited by the Specialists Accreditation Board and registered with the Singapore Medical Council, under the Ministry of Health. Psychiatrists are the only mental health professionals who can prescribe medications.
A clinical psychologist is an expert in mental health and psychological therapy. Some also conduct academic assessments (IQ tests, ADHD assessment) and personality assessments. They have a basic degree in psychology and a Masters’ degree or PhD in Clinical Psychology. At Private Space Medical, all our clinical psychologists have had years of experience in public institutions such as KK Women & Children’s Hospital and the Child Guidance Clinic at Health Promotion Board.

When should we consult a psychiatrist first at Private Space Medical?

Consult our psychiatrist first if you would like to discuss medication options. Our psychiatrist will conduct a clinical assessment, arrive at diagnoses, and recommend suitable treatment plans. We may write letters to communicate with the school and provide medical leave if necessary.
Psychiatrists also provide counselling support and psychological therapy. However, if more intensive therapy is required, our psychiatrist may refer you to see our psychologists and therapists. Therapy will involve self-discovery, deeper psychological exploration, and building life-skills to manage symptoms. Therapy may also involve parents and siblings.

When should we consult a psychologist first?

Our child psychologists conduct assessments for ADHD, IQ, specific learning disorders, conduct issues, and social-emotional difficulties. A comprehensive academic or educational assessment will cover all the above and include various semi-structured assessment tools. If there is clinical suspicion of autism spectrum disorder, you may be referred to our educational psychologist for further assessment.
After the assessment, our psychologists will provide psychological / behavioural therapy to help the child develop strategies to manage their ADHD or emotional challenges. If medications are being considered, an early appointment with our psychiatrist (medical doctor) will be arranged within a few days.

Should I opt to see the psychologist for a more comprehensive Academic Assessment for my child? How long does it take?

If you would like your child to undergo a more detailed and comprehensive Academic Assessment, which includes assessment for IQ, specific learning disorders such as language, reading, writing and mathematics impairment, request to see our child psychologists who have many years of experience in KK Hospital, the largest children hospital in Singapore.
While a full academic assessment is not necessary to diagnose ADHD, it may uncover other learning disorders. Learning disorders occur in 15-40% of kids with ADHD.
The full assessment takes 5-6 hours in total and will be scheduled over 2-3 sessions over 1-2 weeks. The detailed assessment report will provide guidance for the implementation of academic interventions in school and help the child fulfill his or her full academic potential.
To find out more about what a comprehensive academic assessment entails, click here: Learning Difficulties and Academic Underachievement

Seek Help Today

Thank you for taking the time to read about ADHD. If you or someone you know is struggling with symptoms like those mentioned, don't hesitate to reach out to our expert clinicians. Understanding, support, and proper treatment can make a significant difference in managing ADHD and improving quality of life.

Your well-being matters, and we're here to help every step of the way.

Dr Victor Kwok
Senior Consultant Psychiatrist
Private Space Medical
Dr Tay Kai Hong
Senior Consultant Psychiatrist
Private Space Medical