For years there has been an ongoing debate over the pros and cons in regards to the effects of labeling individuals with mental health disorders/disabilities. From a therapist stand point, labeling is essential. It helps in defining the condition/ disorder which aids in ensuring proper treatment measures are taken. It provides insight for the individual as well; once you know what existing condition you have, you can develop a treatment plan to help reduce and/or alleviate symptoms. Once you have a diagnosis additional services (free) may be available to you. Labeling/diagnosis also aids in communicating with other mental health care professionals. Labeling is also necessary for insurance payment purposes. Some cons of labeling are: it can hold a lifelong stigma. Once a diagnosis has been made, some individuals may feel that they are being treated differently; especially within the school system. Some individuals may feel that they are entitled to additional services/assistance due to a diagnosis that may be unwarranted. Some individuals may decide that due to their diagnosis there are limits to what they can do before they ever try. I personally feel that labeling accents what and not the who of a person. You maybe suffering from bipolar disorder but having this disorder should not be the only thing that defines who you are as a person. We are all human and have some commonalities.
So what do you think, to label or not to label?