Psychiatrist Job: Everything You Need to Know

Published: 10th July 2009
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The job outlook for psychiatrists is expected to be very good in the United States, especially in rural areas. While the requirements are demanding, usually involving extensive training in medical school, the benefits of becoming a psychiatrist are very good; medical professionals earn more on average than any other profession. In this article you will learn what it takes to become a psychiatrist, what being a psychiatrist actually involves, and most importantly what benefits you will enjoy once you have become a psychiatrist.

Most aspiring psychiatrist begin the process of preparing for their career while they are still in high school by taking advanced college preparation classes. Once they graduate candidates typically enroll in a four year undergraduate program. After completing the first four years students enroll in medical school for another four years, where they begin to learn the skills that they will need to perform the duties of their job.

Once they have finished medical school they need to obtain further training and experience before they can practice medicine. This is achieved by doing an internship, which normally ranges from three to eight years. If one would prefer, some medical schools offer the opportunity to do an internship and residency while studying, but these programs normally take six years to complete, compared to the normal four.

After a medical student has completed medical school and all required internships, they are ready to begin their career. This is undoubtedly a very exciting time in one's life, but it can also be a very frustrating time. In the first five years of practice, the psychiatrist will need to pick up all of the things that they did not learn during training.

The daily work for a psychiatrist usually involves working with mentally ill patients. The treatment can involve discussion with the patient on an individual basis, or group discussions depending on the situation. Psychiatrists help their patients modify undesirable behavior through the use of therapy sessions, medication or a combination of both. In very extreme cases of depression, psychiatrist will administer electroconvulsive shock therapy.

The reward for all of the hard work does not go unrewarded however, first year psychiatrist can expect to earn around one hundred and seventy thousand dollars per year. After gaining experience, the income potential for psychiatrist only increases.

In addition to working in mental health facilities psychiatrist also have the option of opening their own practice, which can prove to be a very rewarding experience, both financially and emotionally. This also gives the psychiatrist the freedom to use the procedures and techniques that they see as beneficial to their patient without having to justify their methods to supervision.

While it takes many years of planning and many more years of medical school, internships, and residencies to become a psychiatrist, it can be a very rewarding career path for those who want to help the mentally ill. This career path may also be appealing to those who want their own practice because of the strong demand.

To learn more about careers in psychiatry visit the psychiatrist jobs page for more information and how to apply for a job.

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