The Main Difference between a Psychiatrist and a Psychologist

More than 8.5 million people in the United States got mental health treatment in 2019.

Mental health disorders and disabilities can be difficult to deal with. Especially without help from professionals.

If you are considering getting help for your disorders, you should learn the difference between specialists.

Continue reading to discover the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist.

Educational Background

One of the largest differences between psychiatrists and psychologists is their education.

Psychiatrists attend school and get a Doctorate of Medicine. Psychologists must get their Ph.D. to practice, which takes longer. Both psychiatrists and psychologists are medical professionals. They both go through intense schooling and training over many years.

You can have a look at excellent psychiatrist backgrounds to learn more about their education and experience.

Primary Job Focus

A difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist is their main focus on the job.

Psychiatrists often spend their time focusing on finding and treating disorders. A psychologist provides support to clients. They use talk therapy to help an individual and give them coping skills for issues.

Many people think that a psychiatrist’s main focus is to order medications. Medications are only a step toward addressing and treating specific disorders.

Ability to Prescribe Medications

Did you know that you can only get medications from a psychiatrist?

Psychologists do not take as many courses in medicine while in school. Much of their education is focused on case studies and research. If you are looking to find a doctor that will treat your disorders with medications, make sure that they can do so. Otherwise, you will need to get a referral from your doctor.

Work Location

Another main difference between psychiatrists and psychologists is where they work.

Since psychologists are licensed counselors they can work in many settings. They work at hospitals, mental health offices, and schools. Psychiatrists often work in a hospital or private practice settings. They also work in nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, and mental health hospitals.

Types of Treatment They Offer

Both psychiatrists and psychologists help treat mental health disorders.

The difference between the two doctors is in the treatment that they provide. Psychologists primarily use various types of talk and behavior therapy to address issues.

Psychiatrists help treat disorders. Instead of using talk therapy, however, they have different practices. They can prescribe medications to treat symptoms. They can also conduct electrotherapy and light therapy for different forms of treatment!

Learn the Difference Between a Psychiatrist and a Psychologist Today

Figuring out what is a psychologist and what is a psychiatrist can be confusing.

By using this guide you can determine the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist. They will help you identify which doctor you need to receive services from. Understanding the services that they offer and their educational backgrounds is important. It can give you security in finding mental health care.

Don’t be afraid to find help if you are depressed or anxious about your mental health.

Be sure to check out our blog for more articles about a psychiatrist vs psychologist and mental health!

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