Sheppard Pratt’s Sports Psychiatry program is designed to support athletes, coaches, and teams of all levels. We help promote peak performance for individuals and teams.
What is Sports Psychiatry?
Sports psychiatry is a service that offers comprehensive mental health screening, evaluation, and management services for athletes and other individuals involved in organized sports. Through Sheppard Pratt’s Sports Psychiatry program, our experienced clinicians address performance-based skills, as well as any other issues that may impact sports performance.
In addition to addressing factors that impact sports performance, sports psychiatrists place a particular emphasis on an athlete’s developmental stage. Being an athlete is a significant part of someone’s identity; our clinicians help athletes navigate developmental issues (like school, relationships, and finding a long-term career) in addition to sports-related stressors. Through our approach, we ensure that athletes can thrive when adapting to life after sport.
Why See a Clinician with Expertise in Sports?
Sports psychiatrists and psychologists have unique insight into the struggles athletes face – they also have deep knowledge of the many strengths athletes possess. Combined with a thorough understanding of sports calendars, team and recruitment processes, and the busy schedules athletes have, clinicians specializing in sports are uniquely qualified to provide exceptional care for athletes.
Learn more about Deepak Prabhakar, MD, MPH, head of our Sports Psychiatry program.
Why Focus on Athletes?
Mental illness impacts approximately one in five people – athletes are no exception.
Given the outcomes-related stressors common in sports, athletes are particularly vulnerable to performance pressures. Through Sheppard Pratt’s comprehensive evaluation and coaching, athletes will find the support they need to perform their best.
When Should an Athlete Seek Care?
Mental health is just as important as physical health. Many athletes will see their performance, sleep, or mood suffer when they are experiencing problems with their mental health. It is important to seek help as soon as these problems begin, or when you start seeing changes in athletic performance.
Early intervention can be essential to a successful, thriving career in sports. Untreated episodes of mental illness can lead to more issues, including becoming treatment-resistant. It is important to identify and treat any issues an athlete is facing as early as possible to help them achieve optimal performance and outcomes.
What to Expect from Sports Psychiatry Services at Sheppard Pratt
We offer comprehensive sports psychiatry services for athletes of all levels, teams, and team management.
Our offerings include:
- Individual psychiatric screening/consultation
- Medication management
- Individual therapy
- Team consultation to enhance team building and performance
- Team management consultation
- Concussion/traumatic brain injury services
Care is highly individualized to each athlete’s need. No two situations are the same, and athletes face unique challenges related to their sport of choice. Our clinicians have experience helping athletes navigate mental health and substance abuse diagnoses, playbook problems, issues that impede optimal athletic performance, and more.
Services are available on a concierge basis; we understand that athletes have demanding schedules, and work with you to determine the most convenient time and place to receive care.