What is Behavioral Health?

Last updated on August 23rd, 2022 at 10:15 pm

Behavioral health is a relatively new term in the healthcare field. If you’ve just come across the term or been told you need behavioral health services, you may not know what it means.

At Sunrise, we provide a variety of care and support services throughout the Greater Seattle area, including behavioral healthcare. Here’s what we mean by the term:

The Definition of Behavioral Health

There are many different definitions of behavioral health, but most professionals use the term as a way to describe how a person’s behavior impacts their overall wellbeing.

Unlike mental health, behavioral health is not solely focused on a person’s psychological state. Behavioral health concerns include both physical and mental struggles, such as eating habits, excessive gaming, addictive gambling, substance use, and unhealthy relationship patterns.

Behavioral health includes chronic disease management, substance use or addiction patterns, relationship patterns, and other aspects of behavior that are connected to overall well being.

Do I Need Behavioral Healthcare?

It can be hard to tell when you or a loved one needs behavioral healthcare. Most people have a minor bad habit or two or occasionally overdo things.

In general, when the behavior seriously impacts the person’s life — or someone else’s life — it’s time to seek care.

If you’re not sure whether your concern counts as a behavioral health issue, talk to a health provider. A doctor, counselor, psychiatrist, or other health practitioner can help you determine if behavioral healthcare is right for your situation.

Keep in mind that behavioral health issues are very common and probably impact a number of people you know, even if they aren’t advertising it. There’s nothing wrong or shameful about needing any type of healthcare, including behavioral and mental healthcare.

Behavioral Health Care Options

There are many different types and levels of behavioral healthcare available, depending on your needs.

Behavioral healthcare includes a wide variety of services that we often associate with other aspects of health. It can include components of mental healthcare, psychiatric care, marriage and family counseling, substance abuse interventions, and even chronic disease management. It is also sometimes provided in tandem with primary care.

Depending on the severity of the behavioral health issue, patients may require treatment that ranges from a few talk therapy sessions to daily inpatient or outpatient behavioral health services.

Many people who have a behavioral health challenge are also dealing with a mental health challenge. For example, someone who has an eating disorder may have an underlying mental health condition like depression or anxiety that must be treated to change the behavior.

Regardless of which path treatment takes, the goal is to help patients live a fuller life.

Next Steps for Improving Your Behavioral Health

Behavioral health services can help with any behavior that interferes with your work, education, social life, home life, or physical health.

If you are experiencing behavioral health challenges during COVID-19 (or anytime!), there are compassionate people waiting to help you while maintaining full confidentiality. We at Sunrise believe that everyone deserves to live a full life and care for each individual we serve.

We have been serving residents of the Puget Sound region for over 40 years. Contact us today to learn more about our behavioral health services.

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