Hi Angela,

Thank you for your thoughts on the topic of medication compliance. I have to agree that taking a nonjudgmental approach with client’s who have concerns over medication side effects is a great approach. Actively listening to the client’s concerns are so important for the therapeutic relationship as well as providing clients a safe place to share their thoughts and feelings around the medications they are taking. It can be very uncomfortable for a male client to discuss sexual side effects with a female clinician, or vice versa. In most cases, the psychiatrist that my team works with tries to adequately inform client’s of some of the side effects, such as weight gain or sexual dysfunction, to ensure client’s know that this is a risk, but also that there are other options (most of the time) and they are not “stuck” with negative side effects. Providing psychoeducation around medications and the importance of being consistent with medications can also be beneficial for clients. Being upfront, and having a safe, supportive environment for client’s to talk about their concerns is important for compliance as well. The odd time, we do come across client’s that are noncompliant with medications because they simply do not like how the medication makes them feel, they lack insight, or there are other barriers at play such as homelessness, lack of supports, they are voluntarily on medications, etc.