Mental health professionals now recognize genetics play a role in the development of mental health issues. In fact, it was back in the late 1980s when researchers first found a gene linked to schizophrenia and one connected to bipolar disorder.
Today, with the help of genetic testing, medical professionals find they are better able to care for patients who are predisposed to mental illness. How may they do so?
Parents might undergo counseling when genetic testing identifies a characteristic that could be passed on to future children. This counseling is not designed to influence the couple when it comes to having children.
Rather, it works to ensure they understand the disorder, the risk of the disease recurring and the treatment options that will be open to them if they do have a child with the identified condition. When parents have this information, they can make a decision as to whether they should proceed with their desire to have children and what steps they will need to take in the event a child shows signs of the identified disorder.
Breast cancer treatment advanced significantly when the BRCA genes were identified. Women could be tested to determine if they carried the BRCA gene and take measures to help catch their cancer early.
Furthermore, women could opt to take preventative steps to reduce their risk of developing cancer. With genetic testing for mental health disorders, individuals can learn about any disorders they are prone to and contact their doctor if they notice any of the signs or symptoms so treatment can begin early.
Another way in which genetic testing has been of great help for those with cancer is doctors can customize the treatment to the patient in many cases. The same now appears to be true for mental health disorders.
Studies have shown promising results for those suffering from schizophrenia when their medication is customized. The test determines whether or not the person has the gene for a specific serotonin receptor, and this is only one of the ways the test may be of help.
Pathway Genomics Corporation offers a wide range of tests such as these so people can learn more about their health. From pain medications to cardiac health, genetic testing has come a long way over the years. Visit the site today to learn more about these tests and how they help people every day.