If you are struggling with depression and anxiety and think you may have a mental health disorder, should you seek help from a psychologist or a psychiatrist? Both of these are professionals trained to help people with mental health problems, but there are several differences. Here are two of the differences that might help you realize that visiting a psychiatrist would be the better choice for you.
You Think Medication Would Help
One of the key differences between a psychiatrist and a psychologist is the ability to write prescriptions. Visiting a psychologist is a great way to have the ability to talk about the problems you have in your life. It is also a great way to learn how to replace old behaviors with better ones as a way of feeling better and relieving the depression you are suffering from.
The down side to visiting a psychologist is that you will never be given medication to try. Psychologists cannot prescribe medication, but psychiatrists can. If you believe the mental health condition you are suffering from could be relieved with medication, visiting a psychiatrist is the better option.
There are numerous types of medications used to treat mental health conditions, including:
- Antidepressants – Antidepressants are typically used to treat depression.
- Mood stabilizers – Mood stabilizers are also medications used to treat depression, and they can help people that suffer from major mood swings and bipolar disorder.
- Antipsychotics – These medications are primarily used to treat schizophrenia, and there are dozens of different types you can try.
- Antianxiety medications – If you are suffering from major anxiety, a doctor might prescribe an antianxiety medication.
The goal of psychiatry is to determine what type of mental health condition you have and treat is properly. This often requires trying different types of medications and different dosages. It may also require mixing a couple different types of medications, such as an antidepressant with a mood stabilizer drug.
Psychiatrists can determine how to treat you based on talking to you. When you meet with a psychiatrist, you will sit down and discuss your feelings, just like you would do if you met with a psychologist or counselor. Based on what you are saying, the psychiatrist will use his or her knowledge and training to diagnose your condition.
You Believe You Might Have A Health Problem Causing The Depression
The second reason visiting a psychiatrist might be better for you is if you believe your depression is a result of an underlying health problem. A psychologist is not a medical doctor, but a psychiatrist is.
Psychologists attend college and graduate school, but that is where their education stops. Psychiatrists, on the other hand, must attend college and medical school, and they are typically required to complete four-year residency programs. Because of this, they have much more knowledge when it comes to health problems and the way the body works.
There are many types of health problems that can cause depression. The problem is finding out what the health problem is, so that it can be treated. If the health problem is treated, the depression might naturally go away. Many chronic illnesses can cause depression, including diabetes. Thyroid problems can also lead to depression.
If a psychiatrist can locate a health problem and treat is properly, you may not need to take mental health medication. You might be able to get rid of your depression by treating the root cause of it. This is not something that would be possible by visiting a psychologist.
If you are tired of feeling depressed or anxious and want to take a step in the right direction, call an office that offers psychiatry services and schedule an appointment today. Go to sites of local counseling programs today for more information.