Difference between psychiatrist, psychotherapist and psychologist.

There are many professions whose representatives work specifically with people, providing assistance in solving emerging problems. Let's consider three such directions and find out how a psychiatrist differs from a psychotherapist and a psychologist.


Psychiatrist is a physician who identifies signs of mental disorders and treats such diseases.

A psychotherapist is a specialist who, with the help of special techniques, is able to eliminate some negative mental states.

Psychologist is a humanist who helps healthy people to overcome difficulties, establish communication with someone, etc.


General initial part in the names of specialties indicate that they are all devoted to mental processes and states, manifestations of nervous activity. But in each case, their own tasks are solved. To better understand the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychotherapist or psychologist, let's take a closer look at all three professions.

Among them there is a purely medical specialty - a psychiatrist. This doctor, among other things, understands the most severe disorders requiring treatment: schizophrenia, manic manifestations, obsessive depression, etc. In order for the patient to feel relief, medications are prescribed, and special procedures are carried out. Sometimes hospitalization is required.

Psychologist is a specialty not related to medicine. Members of this profession do not deal with the causes of development and the symptoms of mental disorders. They work with clients, not patients. A psychologist will help you become mentally stronger and choose a profession that matches your abilities. He will tell you how to find a common language with certain people, such as relatives or colleagues. A professional will support you in a stressful situation. He will give advice on how to stay afloat in the event of divorce, violence or an incurable illness.

A psychotherapist may be associated with any of the previous specialties. He deals with the treatment of disorders that are not extremely severe. Such conditions are not always classified as diseases. Here, for example, phobias or depression become objects of attention. In his work, a specialist affects the psyche with the help of conversations of a special nature, hypnosis, and all kinds of techniques.

Let us summarize the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychotherapist or psychologist. So, the first of them works only in the medical field. In the treatment, he uses various means, including special drugs. A psychotherapist helps to get rid of conditions that may not be diseases. His weapon is the word, but other methods are practiced. The competence of a psychologist includes working with healthy people. This is not a doctor, but an exclusively humanist.