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Re: psychiatrist, psychotherapist, or psychoanalyst ?

Posted by Mark H. on October 17, 2000, at 13:40:34

In reply to psychiatrist, psychotherapist, or psychoanalyst ?, posted by GLYN on October 17, 2000, at 7:55:42

A psychiatrist is an MD with additional specific training who can prescribe medications. A psychoanalyst usually refers to someone trained in the long-term, Freudian model of therapy. A psychotherapist is a psychologist or social worker (in the US, at least) who uses various talking therapies, usually of shorter duration and more outcome-oriented than traditional psychoanalysis. A psychologist is someone with advanced (post-graduate) education in psychology who may or may not be a clinical practitioner or therapist who sees patients and offers psychotherapy (some psychologists test children, some work for industry, some do research, etc.).

I started by going to my family doctor, who had extreme prejudices against experimenting with medications, and at least was kind enough to admit that he had insufficient training to perform as a psychiatrist.

In the US, psychiatrists are divided between using medication and not using medication, but a majority at this time practice psychopharmacology, which is the treatment of mental and emotional problems with medication.

Psychiatry is a medical specialty, so a psychiatrist is *usually* more qualified to help you find the right anti-anxiety treatment (including medication) than a general practitioner, especially if you don't respond well to the first couple of medications you try.

My psychiatrist pointed me to Psycho-Babble, bless his heart!

Best wishes,

Mark H.




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