Difference between a Psychiatrist, a Psychologist and a Psychotherapist*:
Who is a Psychiatrist? A psychiatrist is a medical doctor who is specialized in mental health. They mainly deal with the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders. Psychiatrists usually prescribe psychiatric medication to treat mental disorders. While many of the greatest therapists in the world are psychiatrists, a typical 21st-century psychiatrist hardly ever gets involved in talk therapy. They mostly use medication and sometimes some other methods such as Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) to help their patients.
Who is a Psychologist? A psychologist is a person who usually holds a doctorate in psychology. Some psychologists offer talk therapy. Others get involved in the diagnosis of mental disorders. Some psychologists do not treat patients. Instead, they offer consultation to organizations and corporations or conduct research or teach at colleges and universities. The term psychologist is a protected term in the US and Canada. In other words, only people who are members of a local regulatory body, such as College of Psychologists of Ontario, may call themselves psychologists. This group of mental health professionals cannot prescribe medication.
Who is a Psychotherapist? A psychotherapist is a professional who specifically offer talk therapy for the purpose of treating mental disorders. This title is protected in some jurisdictions. For example, in Ontario, Canada only members of College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO) may call themselves psychotherapists or registered psychotherapists. Members of CRPO usually hold a Master’s degree in psychology or relevant fields. Psychotherapists are not allowed to prescribe medication. When it comes to the treatment of mental disorders, the roles of psychologists and psychotherapists overlap, but, in general, the type of services psychologists offer could go beyond therapy.
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