We all have those days when we are not feeling quite like ourselves. There may be some unresolved issues at home or something traumatic that comes up that you can’t stop thinking about. You may be struggling financially, be unhappy with your career, or are starting to have issues with your relationship.
These are all examples of things that would cause anyone to become upset. But for some people, these and other troubling events in life are too much for them to handle. They can’t come up with a logical way to resolve their problems and instead fall into a period filled with feelings of anxiety, depression, or both.
For those individuals who have a difficult time dealing with difficult circumstances, a visit with a clinical psychologist can usually be a great benefit.
Clinical Psychologist Salary Rates and More Important Info
Working as a clinical psychologist is a great way to help people that are in need. Psychology has been studied since the mid-19th century. And even though we are now well into the 21st century, we still struggle with understanding the diagnosis and treatment for mental health issues.
Clinical psychologists get to work with a variety of patients who have diverse lifestyles, but all suffer from the same type of disorder. As more people realize that they can’t deal with their mental issues on their own, there will be a greater need for clinical psychologists in the United States. And the salary for this position is very reasonable as well.
What is a Clinical Psychologist?
A clinical psychologist is a professional who works with patients in a broad branch of psychology. They focus on diagnosing and treating patients who are struggling with mental, behavioral, and emotional disorders. Some of the most common issues that a clinical psychologist will treat include eating disorders, substance abuse, learning disabilities, anxiety, and depression.
Clinical psychologists have the option to work in outpatient or in-patient mental healthcare facilities. They can also work in private practices and academic areas. Their job duties include treating patients with mental or behavioral health issues and coming up with a viable treatment plan so that they can live a life that is as free of stress and anxiety as possible.
What is a Clinical Psychologist Salary?
A clinical psychologist salary will vary depending on where they are located, how much experience they have, and how many patients they treat each day.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for a clinical psychologist was at $76,040 in May 2017.
The most common employers for clinical psychologists include public school systems, hospitals and private practices. The average annual salary for clinical psychologists who work in those areas can range between $74,130 and $84,020.
What Does a Clinical Psychologist Do?
A clinical psychologist can work in a variety of areas, based on the location that they choose to work in and what issues they choose to treat. These psychologists may specialize in chronic illnesses such as obesity or diabetes, mental illnesses like anxiety or depression, and psychological disorders like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
A clinical psychologist can work with both children and adults. They can also see patients who have been diagnosed with learning disorders and delays, as well as those with Autism, Asperger’s, or ADHD.
Clinical psychologists who work for the public school system can help students who have learning disabilities. Those who work at a university may help students with making wise career decisions or counsel them on staying emotionally happy and healthy.
They can help in areas that are culturally diverse or financially disadvantaged. There are also many clinical psychologists today who work with seniors.
A few of the areas where clinical psychologists can be found working include:
Other clinical psychologists may not work as closely with patients or clients. They may conduct research on mental health issues, learn about policies or provide training to others.
What is the Work Environment Like?
Those interested in a career in clinical psychology can find a job in a variety of healthcare facilities including hospitals and mental health locations.
Depending on what areas they specialize in, a clinical psychologist might also find a job with a private practice, a government organization, college campus or public school system. Other locations where you may work as a clinical psychologist can include police stations, schools and military branches.
There are any clinical psychologist who will choose to open their own private practice and work for themselves. This is often a very expensive career move but if you have enough patients, it could definitely pay off in a short amount of time.
In 2012, it was reported that around a third of all psychologists were self-employed. They would see their clients during the evening and weekend hours or meet as their client’s schedule permitted them to. While many may work a full 40-hour week, most clinical psychologists stay on-call around the clock in case their clients need to talk to them.
What Qualities are Needed to Work as a Clinical Psychologist?
Working as a clinical psychologist may be a very good career choice, but it is a position that is not designed for everyone. It can be very stressful and demanding to work with patients who show mental or behavioral issues. So, you have to be able to handle the different moods and hostile behavior that comes along with this type of job.
You also need to be a good ‘people person’. It is your job to listen to your client without judging them and offer helpful advice as needed. It may be difficult to hold back how you truly feel about your client’s actions or their lifestyle. But as their psychologist you are there to offer support and lift them up instead of dragging them down.
You need to be flexible with your schedule. Psychologists do not usually work a normal 9 to 5 day, 40 hours a week. They are often on-call in case their clients need them at any time, day or night.
You will also need to be open-minded and understanding. If a client comes to you because of a substance abuse problem, and you disagree with drinking alcohol, you need to put your personal beliefs aside so that you can focus on the needs of your client and nothing else.
Working as a clinical psychologist is not for everyone and you will need to take some time to consider other options if you find out that it isn’t the right career path for you.
What are the Education Requirements for a Clinical Psychologist?
In every state, it is required that anyone who chooses to work as a clinical psychologist must have a graduate degree in some area of clinical psychology.
This is usually a Master’s degree. However, there are many who choose to go on to earn their doctorate in clinical psychology. To qualify for a graduate program, students will need to first have a bachelor’s degree in psychology.
There are two doctorates available.
Earning your doctorate will take between five to seven years, and an additional year of internship for most programs. Continuing education is a must and many students go on to become board certified clinical psychologists.
Are You Interested in Becoming a Clinical Psychologist?
If you are interested in becoming a clinical psychologist, then you have made a wise decision with your career path. Working in the field of psychology is sure to open up many doors and you will have a secure job for many years to come.
While you can apply for a job with a Master’s degree in most cases, many clinical psychologists choose to go on to earn a PhD. Working as a clinical psychologist can be very rewarding because of the amount of people you get to help each day.
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