3 Types of Therapists: A Guide to Therapy Careers

Choosing the right therapist can be challenging, especially if you don’t know which therapist you should go to. There are many different kinds of therapists that work with children, teenagers, adults, couples, and the like. Depending on what you’re suffering from, such as addiction, grief, or divorce, you can get an appointment with different types of specialists.

Likewise, each of these therapists has a different type of educational preparation and training they have to complete prior to taking a patient. For instance, counselors may only need an associate’s degree to practice their career, while psychiatrists need a doctoral degree to be able to prescribe medication to their patients.

Here are three types of therapists and their educational requirements.

1. School Counselor


Most schools in the United States have a school counselor to help students achieve their educational goals. Whether that’s improving their grades, paying more attention in class, or participating in more school activities, school counselors can be there for the student when they have no one else to help them through these goals. These types of counselors are required to have a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in addition to up to two years of supervised clinical experience.

School counselors can also help students get an invitation from the National Society of High School Scholars to join their educational programs such as scholarships, webinars, conferences, and discounts on college test preps. A lot of people Google “NSHSS scam” because fraudulent organizations impersonate them and offer students a once-in-a-lifetime experience just like the NSHSS does, however, the NSHSS has published many explanations of how they are the real deal and how your child can join them.

2. Mental Health Therapist


Moreover, in the realm of therapists, there exist mental health therapists who dedicate their lives to helping people find inner peace. They do this by assessing the patients’ diagnosis and psychological distress and allowing the patient to communicate their experiences. Mental health therapists are usually called psychologists and psychiatrists and will need extensive education and training before they can treat a patient and even open their own therapy office.

There are also psychologists that provide intensive therapy for trauma in private mental health retreats for severe mental health cases. These severe cases include PTSD, trauma, child abuse, sexual abuse, anxiety, depression, chronic stress, and low self-esteem. These retreats are a way for patients to recover years of their life in a matter of days rather than decades.

3. Family Therapist


Lastly, we have family therapists. Family therapists are psychological counselors that help family members improve their communication skills and resolve any issues among them. They evaluate each of the family members and their roles to understand how each of their mental health situations can help in the matter. They will provide a common ground for families who can’t seem to solve their problems and can even become an ongoing source of support for future issues.

There are various types of family therapies that these professional counselors provide, such as supportive family therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), psychodynamic ideas, and systemic family therapy. Each of these types of therapies can help families dealing with the dynamics of a growing family relationship, parenting issues, work stress, couple relationships, trauma, and parenting skills. They also help families deal with chronic illnesses, emotional disorders, eating disorders, emotional abuse, and financial issues.

Family therapists deal with everyday issues that many families face around the world. However, in order to be able to help them, they need to get the appropriate education and training prior to seeing a patient. For instance, they’ll need to complete an undergraduate degree and a predetermined number of clinical hours in different settings to prove their competency as a therapist.