woman asks counselor the difference between psychiatrist vs therapist

Psychiatrist vs. Therapist: Who Does What?

If you or a loved one is dealing with addictive behavior, going to rehabilitation for treatment is an option that yields positive results. Most addiction recovery centers offer sessions with psychiatrists or therapists as a means of talking through situations and finding proper ways to deal with them so addictive behavior does not continue. Who should a client see if they have an addiction though? Who helps best? Learn about psychiatrist vs. therapist points to help determine which option to seek.

What a Psychiatrist Does to Help Treat Addiction

When determining the psychiatrist vs. therapist dilemma, it is important to realize that a psychiatrist is a medical doctor. They must have attended four years of medical school and finish an internship training for a year or two. Afterward, they have several years of training as a resident psychiatrist. Psychiatrists do not offer therapy. However, they are able to administer medication.

Psychiatrists get to the bottom of an addiction problem by pinpointing what mental difficulties have made an impact on behavior. They look into your health in detail and are able to aid in treatment for ailments that cause the behavior to continue.

What a Therapist Does to Help Treat Addiction

A therapist does not administer medication of any kind. If you have a health issue that requires medical treatment, it needs to be handled by someone with a license to write a prescription. Therapists, however, are extremely important to those who suffer from addictions or mental health disorders.

A therapist looks into the background of your lifestyle to determine what causes addictive behavior to continue. A therapist talks to their client about their hopes, dreams, fears, and worries when it comes to an addictive lifestyle. There are often triggers that come into play regarding past actions or events. A therapist uses the power of talking in an individual, group, or family session with someone suffering from an addiction to determine the right course of action to stop the behavior from continuing.

A therapist is a qualified mental health professional. They need to hold at least a master’s degree to perform. While they cannot prescribe medication, they have the ability to diagnose mental health disorders. They then reach out to medical physicians or psychiatrists to ensure treatment is proper for a particular client.

If medication is necessary, they obtain it through the appropriate sources or direct a client to the right physician or psychiatrist for assistance. Many people turn to a therapist before seeing a psychiatrist. If they do know they need medication, however, a trip to a physician or psychiatrist is necessary before therapy.

Where to Get Help

Deciding between a psychiatrist vs. a therapist is a personal choice and is often determinant of the need for medication to treat mental health issues. At Ranch Recovery PA, we offer many services for those struggling with mental health disorders, including addiction. We offer the following services for those dealing with substance abuse:

For those who need help with a mental disorder, Ranch Recovery PA has the following available:

Ranch Recovery PA helps with determining psychiatrist vs. therapist for your specific needs. We help in structuring a treatment plan that fits you appropriately. Psychiatry and therapy services are both available in stopping addictive behavior as necessary. If you have questions about our practice or the services we provide, contact us at 717.969.9126 for further information.

Scroll to Top