Preparing for your appointment

By Mayo Clinic Staff

If you're concerned because you're having repeated emotional outbursts, talk with your primary care doctor or make an appointment with someone who specializes in treating emotional disorders, such as a psychiatrist, psychologist or social worker. Here's some information to help make the most of your appointment.

What you can do

Before your appointment, make a list of:

  • Symptoms you're experiencing, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for the appointment
  • Key personal information, including any major stresses or recent life changes
  • All medications, vitamins and other supplements that you're taking, including the doses
  • Questions to ask your doctor

Some basic questions to ask your doctor include:

  • Why am I having these angry outbursts?
  • Do I need any tests? Do these tests require any special preparation?
  • Is this condition temporary or long lasting?
  • What treatments are available, and which do you recommend?
  • Are there any side effects from treatment?
  • Are there any alternatives to the primary approach that you're suggesting?
  • I have other health conditions. How can I best manage these conditions together?
  • Is there a generic alternative to the medicine you're prescribing?
  • How long does therapy take to work?
  • Do you have any printed material I can have? What websites do you recommend?

Don't hesitate to ask other questions.

What to expect from your doctor

Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions. Be ready to answer them so that you can focus on points you want to spend more time on. Your doctor may ask:

  • How often do you have explosive episodes?
  • What triggers your outbursts?
  • Have you injured or verbally abused others?
  • Have you damaged property when angry?
  • Have you ever tried to hurt yourself?
  • Have your outbursts negatively affected your family or work life?
  • Does anything seem to make these episodes occur more often?
  • Is there anything that helps calm you down?
  • Has anyone else in your family ever been diagnosed with a mental illness?
  • Have you ever had a head injury?
Aug. 25, 2015