Both experts have undergone training to treat and diagnose people with mental health issues. Still, their roles, educations, and other aspects are not the same.

Each professional comes with different training, background, and treatment to help people with mental health conditions.

We recommend you to enter here to learn the importance of both degrees for your future.

It is vital to remember psychiatrists require a medical degree before they specialize themselves to become mental health professionals. Therefore, they need advanced qualifications, including specialty and residency.

As a result, they can handle medication, talk, and other therapies for curing people with potential issues.

Psychologists also require advanced degrees, including PsyD or Ph.D. However, they can only use talk therapy for treating a wide array of conditions. Besides, they can act as consultants with other healthcare providers and therapists for different programs.

Both mental health professionals require a proper license and qualification to create a practice within their area of operation. However, psychiatrists will also need a medical doctor’s license beforehand.

Practice Differences

You probably understand by now that these two professionals use different tools for treating mental health issues. At the same time, they can operate in other environments as well.


They can work in hospitals, private practices, university medical centers, nursing homes, rehabs, prisons, hospice issues.

At the same time, they can treat people with various mental health conditions, including major depression, bipolar disorder, ADHD, anxiety, PTSD, schizophrenia.

They can diagnose various conditions through one-on-one evaluations, tests, lab tests. As soon as they analyze, they will prescribe meds and handle talk therapy for your situation.

Remember, they can easily prescribe medications compared with other professionals, such as antipsychotics, stimulants, sedatives, mood stabilizers, and antidepressants.

As soon as they prescribe certain meds to someone, they will monitor them for side effects and improvement signs. Through regular visitations, they will consider changing the type of meds and dosage, among other things.

They can also prescribe other treatments such as:

  • Light Therapy – The procedure uses artificial light for treating depression, especially if you are not getting enough sunlight daily.
  • ECT or Electroconvulsive Therapy – It requires an electrical current that will affect the brain. It is an invasive procedure necessary for people with significant depression.

They can also treat children by conducting a thorough medical examination. That way, they can detect potential and underlying conditions in your child, genetic, familial, educational, cognitive, and emotional.


In the same way as mental health doctors, they treat people with mental health issues and problems. However, they can diagnose them through observation, surveys, and interviews, among other ways.

The most significant difference between these two mental health experts is they cannot prescribe meds.

Compared with psychiatric treatment, they can undergo additional qualifications, which will allow them to prescribe meds but only in five states in the US, including New Mexico, Louisiana, Illinois, Iowa, and Idaho.

If they operate in Indian Health Service, Guam, or work for the military, they can prescribe meds.

They can operate in numerous settings, including hospitals, private practices, nursing homes, university medical centers, rehabs, prisons, and hospices.

In most cases, they will treat people by using talking therapy. This treatment means talking and telling a professional about your issues to determine the best course of action.

One of the most common types is cognitive behavioral therapy, which is an approach to help individuals deal with negative thinking patterns.

We can differentiate numerous forms of talk therapy, such as family, one-on-one, and group options. While treating children, they can assess other aspects apart from mental health, including academic capabilities.

They can also perform a wide array of therapies that others cannot include play therapy. It involves letting children play freely in a safe playroom by adding some limitations.

That way, they can watch children play and gain insights on uncomfortable expressing and disruptive behaviors. As a result, they can teach kids problem-solving and communication skills.

If you wish to learn more about different types of psychiatrists, you should enter this website: for more information.

Final Word

If you suffer from severe mental health issues requiring medications such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and severe depression, you should visit a psychiatrist.

On the other hand, if you wish to understand your behavior and thoughts better, it is better to talk with a psychologist.

It is as simple as that.