Behavioral Health

Integrated Behavioral Health

Primary care is most often the entry point for most individuals seeking care for common conditions including anxiety, depression, and substance abuse. Several advantages exist for integrating behavioral health into primary healthcare. These include improving access to mental health services and treatment of co-morbid physical conditions, reducing stigma for individuals with mental health disorders, improving the prevention, and detection of mental disorder, and increasing the likelihood that those with mental illness receive the right care they need. Studies have shown receiving both behavioral health and primary care treatment in integrated settings leads to better health outcomes for patients.


Behavioral health is the relationship between behaviors (both good and bad habits) and their effect on our physical health and mental health. Behavioral health encompasses mental health, substance abuse management, marriage counseling, family counseling, and chronic disease management.

While mental health is a component of behavioral health, both are connected.  An individual struggling with their behavioral health may encounter stress, addiction, relationship difficulties, attention deficit disorder, learning disabilities, anxiety, depression or other mood disorders. An individual’s mental health can be affected by factors including genetics, injuries involving the brain, extreme stress, traumatic events, and habits. Since behavioral health is designed to be inclusive and incorporates challenges faced this approach also greatly benefits individuals with mental health-related issues.

Impact of Behavioral Health

Behavioral health is designed to understand the root cause of behaviors, prevent, and treat the underlying cause of these behaviors.

Advantages to collaborating with a behavioral health consultant include:

  • Management of mental health problems
  • Assisting individuals cope with medical conditions
  • Improving healthy lifestyle with healthy eating and activity changes
  • Managing anxiety, anger, grief, or stress
  • Altering risky behaviors including tobacco, alcohol and substance abuse
  • Working through marriage, family problems or other challenging life situations
  • Dealing with memory and learning difficulties

Common symptoms of behavioral or mental health condition:

  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Sleep difficulties
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Changes in personality
  • Social withdrawal
  • Depression
  • Increased risk taking
  • Substance abuse
  • Feeling of sadness and hopelessness
  • Lethargy or hyperactivity
  • Unusual and increased panicking
  • Paranoia
  • Excessive worry
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Thoughts of harming others

Mental health disorders

Mental health disorders or mental illnesses are conditions that affect an individual’s mood, feeling, thinking, and behavior. They affect how the individual relates to others and may be transient, long-lasting or recurrent.

Common mental health disorders include:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Panic disorder
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Phobias
  • Eating disorders
  • Schizophrenia

Treating mental illnesses

Depending on the mental illness diagnosed, the healthcare provider offers a management plan that may include:

  • Medication
  • Counseling
  • Lifestyle changes
  • Stress management
  • Mindfulness exercises

Behavioral Health at GHENTMD

Behavioral health is a service available at GHENTMD. Call the office (480-935-8855) or book online to schedule an appointment. If you think that you or someone you care for may benefit from behavioral health treatment, you can start with us, your primary care provider. During the visit, appropriate recommendations for managing your physical and/or behavioral health concern(s) will be made, and appropriate referrals placed. At GHENTMD we understand that collaboration is vital for effective management of behavioral and mental healthcare. We support proactive communication with your psychotherapist, licensed counselor, or other behavioral health specialist, and with your psychiatrist.