UCLA-affiliated psychiatrist Paul Puri diagnoses and prescribe treatments for TV’s most compellingly mental characters.
Character Name: Louie
Diagnosis: Mild depression, compartmentalization, self-sabotaging tendencies.
Symptoms: Suppressing parts of his personality, difficulty connecting with others, mild anger issues.
Recommended Medication: A low dose of antidepressants for a trial period.
Recommended Therapy: Role-playing as part of a broader program of psychotherapy. “He might rehearse different scenarios and tease out the things that he does to sabotage his relationships.”
Character Name: Hannah Horvath
Diagnosis: Anxiety disorder.
Symptoms: Excessive worry, low self-esteem, irrational thinking.
Recommended Medication: SSRI antidepressants.
Recommended Therapy: “She’s already journaling. She could journal about thought distortions when she notices she’s having them and apply rational thinking.”