A collaborative for the early identification and treatment of mental illness with psychosis

Clinical High-Risk

Clinical High-Risk

How do you recognize if someone is “at-high risk?”

Many early warning signs:

  • feeling “something’s not quite right”
  • having odd perceptual experiences
  • jumbled thoughts and confusion
  • trouble speaking clearly
  • unnecessary fear
  • declining interest in people, activities, and self-care
  • deterioration in functioning
    • work / school / hygiene

It should be noted that many people have these experiences and are not at high risk.  Generally, it is more concerning if these experiences are distressing or interfere with daily life (school, work, social relationships). Relative to fully diagnosable psychosis, risk experiences are less frequent, less intense, less impairing, and briefer. Individuals experiencing these symptoms might also frequently struggle with other mental health symptoms, such as mood problems, anxiety, and substance use. If you are in doubt, it does not hurt to give us a call to learn more.

The Strive for Wellness Clinic

*Visit our website to complete a free screening evaluation (https://www.sfwmaryland.com/)

701 W. Pratt Street, Baltimore, MD 21201

1450 S. Rolling Rd., Halethorpe, MD 21227

The Strive for Wellness Clinic, an early identification and intervention clinic, is aimed at identifying young people between the ages of 12 and 25 who have diagnosable psychosis or are at high risk for developing psychosis, and getting them help that is right for them. Research tells us that earlier intervention leads to better outcomes. 

Our program provides a continuum of care for people at high-risk, with clinicians available to provide assessment and offer treatment options. Treatment is tailored to the needs of the client, but generally, components of treatment include:

  • psycho-education
  • safety planning
  • cognitive-behavior therapy
  • problem solving
  • goal setting
  • relapse prevention
  • social skills
  • treatment for other mental health challenges or substance use
  • involvement with family.
  • consultation regarding medications that can help with mental health

The program staff work closely with schools, houses of worship, law enforcement, and other communities that come into contact with young people to promote public awareness and decrease stigma about mental illness. The hope is that the program will help people at risk for psychosis.


Early Psychosis

Sometimes individuals have strange and unusual experiences, such as:

  • Hearing or seeing things that others do not see or hear
  • Having unusual thoughts or beliefs that appear as strange to themselves or others
  • Feeling fearful or suspicious of others, sometimes including others they usually trust
  • Isolating themselves from family and friends

Experiences like these may disrupt your life. When detected early, many problems can be prevented. The earlier individuals get help, the greater the chance of a successful recovery. The longer individuals go without getting help, the more likely they are to experience greater disruption to their family, friendships, school, and employment. Other problems may also occur or intensify, such as depression, substance abuse, breaking the law, or causing injury to himself/herself. Also, delays in getting help may lead to a slower and less complete recovery.

Experiences such as the ones listed above often begin between the ages of 15-25. This is a very critical stage of a young person's life. Adolescents and young adults are just starting to develop their own identity, form lasting relationships, and make plans for their careers and future. Getting help sooner helps individuals recover and move forward to live a life of their choosing.