For anyone who struggles with mental health, it’s important to understand that there are professionals available who can help. Mental illnesses challenges range in severity from inconvenient to debilitating and every shade of grey in between. As an experienced Tysons Corner, VA therapist – including those who practice at Lindsey Hoskins & Associates – can confirm, finding the “right” professional for your circumstances, needs, and priorities can make all the difference to your wellbeing. If you or a loved one needs help, there are five mental health professionals you may want to consider seeking out.

1. Psychologist

A psychologist is trained to assess an individual’s mental health through evaluation, tests and interviews. They will make a diagnosis and recommend treatment. Psychologists often facilitate group therapy and individual therapy, and some specialize in additional forms of therapy as well. This includes behavioral therapy interventions such as dialectical behavior therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy.

2. Psychiatrist

A psychiatrist is a licensed medical doctor. These doctors have completed medical school, as well as psychiatric training. Psychiatrists can formally diagnose mental health illnesses, and they are some of the only mental health professionals able to prescribe medication. Others who can prescribe medication include mental health nurse practitioners, primary care doctors, primary nurse practitioners, and psychiatric pharmacists. Some psychiatrists specialize in a particular area such as substance abuse disorders, children’s mental health, or geriatric care.

3. Therapist

Therapists, who are sometimes known as counselors or clinicians, evaluate patients to determine the best ways to treat their clients’ challenges. Using therapeutic techniques, they encourage those with mental illness and/or life struggles to think, feel and live differently. With a different outlook, therapy offers a safe, non-invasive treatment option.

4. Clinical Social Worker

A clinical social worker can evaluate an individual’s mental health and provide therapy for that individual. There are often specific programs a clinical social worker will recommend a patient, and sometimes the worker facilitates those programs. Clinical social workers are the individuals who manage your case and provide advocacy services so you can get the help you need.

5. Certified Peer Specialist

Certified peer specialists are individuals who have dealt with mental illness themselves, and who have figured out how to manage it. Sometimes the best support comes from someone who has been there and truly understands what you’re going through. Certified peer specialists offer guidance, mentoring, and support for individuals and families affected by mental illness. In most cases, they have been trained and certified to be able to provide accurate help by developing skills and meeting goals.

Getting Help Today

There’s no reason to deal with your mental illness or that of a loved one on your own. Contact a mental health professional today to get started with assessments and treatment.