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What Does a Psychiatrist do?

A psychiatrist is a mental health professional who can diagnose and treat mental health conditions. These professionals are medical doctors (M.D.) who specialize in understanding psychiatric conditions including substance use disorders, though there are many reasons why someone might see a psychiatrist, including conditions like depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, personality disorders, and others.

All psychiatrists have an undergraduate degree, usually in psychology or pre-med topics. From there, they attend medical school for four years until they receive their medical degree. After that, like all medical doctors, psychiatrists must complete a residency program where they work closely under the supervision of more experienced doctors. Psychiatrists may also choose subspecialty practice areas, like drug treatment, school psychiatry, or veteran’s care. They must also hold all the proper licenses required by the state and will need to renew this license regularly and earn continuing education credits to keep their credentials up to date.

Psychiatrists can choose to work for a hospital or clinic or open their own private practice. Some psychiatrists even work in settings like prisons, military facilities, schools, rehabilitation centers, or other healthcare facilities. Psychiatrists are unique in the mental health field because they are able to diagnose mental health conditions and provide prescription treatment like antidepressants or anti-anxiety medication. Because psychiatrists are fully trained in medicine, visiting with a psychiatrist can also help you rule out any other medical issues that may be causing your mental health problem.

Psychiatrist Near Me

Seeking help for any mental health condition can be scary, especially if you’re facing it alone and don’t know where to start. You may fear that the people you love and care about may judge you negatively if they find out you’re seeking psychiatric care. Often, these patients want their treatment to be discreet, and seeing a psychiatrist nearby can help. If you’re wondering “”Where can I find a psychiatrist near me?”” our directory can help you find the treatment that’s right for you.

We have listings from hundreds of psychiatrists across the country to make it easier to search for one who is local to your area. Using our directory, you can find the location of psychiatrists and more information about their practice. When you seek treatment from a psychiatrist locally, you won’t have to travel as far to get the help and support you need. This means you can spend less time traveling to get treatment and more time with friends and loved ones while you stay focused on getting better.


If you are experiencing issues with drug or alcohol use or addiction, a psychiatrist can make sure you receive the proper care. Here are some of the greatest benefits of seeing a psychiatrist when you’re struggling with addiction:

● They can get you a diagnosis – oftentimes, substance abuse and mental illness co-occur. Those with mental illness may use substances to cope with their symptoms and find relief. A psychiatrist can help to diagnose underlying mental health conditions that may be at the root of your substance abuse.
● They can help you detox – detoxing is the initial stage in your recovery from addiction, and is often the most difficult part to get through. Drugs affect your brain chemistry, and a psychiatrist is an expert in just that. They can help you get through this tough stage without risking relapse.
● They can prescribe medications – sometimes, depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, PTSD, or other mental illnesses are at the root of your drug abuse issues. A psychiatrist can help you find a medication that can help relieve some of your symptoms so you don’t have to turn to drugs or alcohol for relief.
When you see a psychiatrist for drug abuse treatment, they can help you understand exactly why you started using drugs and can help you find healthier ways to cope with stressors in your life.

Difference Between Psychologist and Psychiatrist

When looking for mental health professionals to help treat your substance abuse, you will likely have the option of visiting a psychologist or a psychiatrist. It’s important to understand the difference between these two professionals. As discussed above, a psychiatrist has received their medical degree and has completed an undergraduate program, a medical school program, and a residency.

A psychiatrist, on the other hand, has not attended medical school and has not gone through a residency program. They usually receive undergraduate degrees in psychology, and then a master’s degree or Ph.D. in psychology. Like psychiatrists, psychologists must be properly licensed by the state to practice legally, but unlike psychiatrists, they cannot prescribe medication.

Psychiatrists specialize in diagnosing mental illnesses and helping their patients manage treatment. On the other hand, psychologists tend to focus on providing their patients with specialized counseling or talk therapy, which provides their patients with a safe space to talk about their issues. Psychologists can also help their patients learn healthy ways to cope with problems in their lives and change potentially harmful patterns in their thinking and behavior. Sometimes, patients see both psychiatrists and psychologists in conjunction, so they can receive prescription medicine and therapy as part of a comprehensive treatment program.

Psychiatrist vs Therapist

In addition to psychologists and psychiatrists, you may also have the option to see a therapist. Therapists are mental health professionals who can help their clients overcome difficulties they may be facing in their lives. A therapist may specialize in family therapy, marriage counseling, addiction counseling, or other specialties. Sometimes, a therapist may have a master’s degree or doctorate in social work, counseling, or other fields.

In general, a therapist is more of an umbrella term that covers different kinds of professional counseling. Therapists can use techniques like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), or talk therapy to help their clients find relief from their problems. Finding a mental health professional who specializes in helping their patients overcome drug abuse and addiction can be the first step on your path to recovery. These professionals have helped many people like you overcome their drug issues and live a healthy and happy life.