Psychologist or psychiatrist? 3 questions to be asked before making an appointment

Patients are always surprised to learn that there are very few laws that regulate medical practice. In fact, a doctor who is licensed to practice medicine by the state medical board – whatever its specialty – can legally provide counseling for anyone, even if he has absolutely no training in psychology!

For example, just because the doctor called himself a psychiatrist not a guarantee that he was actually competent to practice psychiatry. For example, legally, a proktologist, a doctor who is certified as a specialist in rectal disorders, can label him as a non-board certified Psychiatrist ADHD psychiatrist and do teen counseling for drug problems or psychotherapy for suicide patients – all, without training in psychology .

A urologist, certified only as a specialist in treating urinary disorders, can re-identify itself as a psychiatrist, although it is not certified, and still treats dangerous bipolar patients; And a dermatologist, actually certified as a specialist in skin disorders can call himself a psychiatrist and treat your child to ADHD – all legal and can be done without training anything in psychology or mental health care.

These three examples may look ridiculous. But, remember men and women often get their care for depression and anxiety without ever checking, or even care to see if the medical doctor they consult is certified in psychiatry?

Don’t assume that your medical doctor has the right credentials to carry out psychological care, counseling or high-quality psychotherapy. However, even board certification in psychiatry is not a guarantee because most of the council certified psychiatrists only have 3 years special training in mental health care.

Most of their training is in physiology, chemistry, science and general treatment. Therefore, they usually prescribe medicines and do a little, if there are, counseling or psychotherapy.

Your therapist screen that is possible with the following 3 questions:

1. Are you certified by the psychiatric board and American neurology?

Make sure that if your doctor labels himself as a psychiatrist that he is certified by the American psychiatric board and neurology. If he, it means he has received special professional training in providing mental health care.

However, remember that psychiatric training is often focused on physical therapy, such as prescription drugs and even use of shock care. Psychiatrists sometimes only accept a little training in psychotherapy, counseling or psychological testing.