Accepting new patients for September appointments
Practice: Young Adult Behavioral Health Program
NOTE: Only sees college students who are 18 - 26 years old and graduate students over this age range.
Specialties & expertise
- College student life transition
- Anxiety and panic disorder
- Bipolar disorder
- Obsessive compulsive disorder
- Substance use
- Acute stress reactions
- Premenstrual dysphoric disorder
- Grief and loss
- Stress management
Dr. Meesha Ahuja is a psychiatrist and the Director of the Young Adult Behavioral Health Program at Rhode Island Hospital. She received her MD from The Pennsylvania State University and completed her psychiatry residency at Brown University where she served as chief resident and her fellowship at Brown University.
Dr. Ahuja provides primarily medication management for her patients. She has particular expertise in anxiety, panic, depression, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, substance use, acute stress reactions, grief/trauma, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, life transitions (particularly for college students), and stress management. She enjoys really getting to know patients and understanding them as a person. Patients may see Dr. Ahuja anywhere from once a week to once a month, and typically in conjunction with talk therapy with a therapist.
Dr. Ahuja primarily sees young adult clients, such as college students studying in Providence during the school year, or living in the area during summer and school holidays.
ADHD – Primarily medication prescription; neuropsychological evaluation if clients do not have a diagnosis; connecting clients with therapists; and working with the disability office in schools for special adjustments like test time.
Anxiety – Including generalized anxiety, OCD, panic disorder, social anxiety
Cultural adjustment – Including adjusting to college culture from one's hometown; adjustment and culture shock as an international student
Diet & exercise – A holistic evaluation of the patient's sleep, exercise, and stress management
Eating disorder – Primary focus on prescribing medication for eating disorders, as well as referring clients to nutrition counseling and therapists
Insomnia – Including mild to serious troubles sleeping, and a holistic assessment of the patient's sleep schedule; diet
Life transition / college – Including adjusting to college, new relationships, graduation, job or career transition
Mood disorders – Including depression and bipolar disorder
Relationship issues – Relationship differences, breakups, friendships, dating
Substance use – Including alcohol, marijuana, drugs, tobacco
Trauma – Including trauma from relationships, childhood, military trauma, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Stress management – A holistic evaluation of the patient's sleep, exercise, and stress management
- Blue Cross Blue Shield
- Brown University Student Health Insurance (Consolidated Health)
- Cigna (see Note 1 Below)
- Harvard Pilgrim
- Medicaid (see Note 2 below)
- Neighborhood Health
- Providence College (Tufts)
- PHCS / Multiplan
- RISD Student Health Insurance (United Health)
- United Health
- Initial session: 60min
- Ongoing sessions: 50min
- Psychopharmacology sessions: 30-50min
- Group sessions: 60min
Note 1: Cigna is only accepted if your plan offers Out-of-network benefits; please call Cigna to confirm your benefits.
Note 2: Medicaid typically does not cover out-of-state services other than emergency services. While Rhode Island Medicaid covers our services, for those with Medicaid from other states, please contact us so we can check your coverage.
Message to clients
"My goal as a physician is to really get to know you, to look at all aspects of your life, and to tailor a treatment plan that meets your needs. We at the Young Adult Behavioral Health Program provide both psychopharmacological treatment and counseling, and accept most major insurances. Whether you are transitioning into college, taking time off, or graduating from college, we offer a private space for you, and work with family members and universities to provide individually tailored treatment."
For international / out-of-town students: "I was born and raised in Pennsylvania, but come from a cultural background. Many international and out-of-town students find that they have a lot less support here than what they’re used to and may be unfamiliar with getting psychiatric treatment. I work on building an alliance with you to make sure you are comfortable with your care."
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)In Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), patients works with a therapist in a structured way, attending a limited number of sessions. CBT helps patients become aware of inaccurate or negative thinking, so they can view challenging situations more clearly and respond to them in a more effective way.
Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a cognitive behavioral treatment that often used to treat disorders such as substance dependence, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), eating disorders, and particularly chronic borderline personality disorder. It teaches skills such as mindfulness, pain tolerance, interpersonal effectiveness, and emotional regulation. (learn more)
Interpersonal Therapy (IPT)Interpersonal Therapy (IPT) is a time-limited psychotherapy that focuses on interpersonal issues, which are understood to be a factor in the genesis and maintenance of psychological distress. The targets of IPT are symptom resolution, improved interpersonal functioning, and increased social support. (learn more)
Supportive TherapySupportive psychotherapy is used primarily to reinforce a patient’s ability to cope with stressors by giving clients the opportunity to express their feelings and thoughts about the issues. Clinicians help patients learn how to move forward and make decisions or changes that may be necessary to adapt, either to an acute change, such as the loss of a loved one or severe disappointment, or to a chronic situation, such as an ongoing illness. (learn more)
Education and work experience
Young Adult Behavioral Health Program at Rhode Island Hospital, Director, 2017 - Present
Young Adult Behavioral Health Program at Rhode Island Hospital, Attending Psychiatrist, 2015 - 2017
Brown University Alpert Medical School, Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Women's Mental Health Fellowship
Brown University Alpert Medical School, Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Chief Resident, Adult Psychiatry Residency
The Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, MD, Medicine
The Pennsylvania State University, BS, Biology and Psychology