How a Career in Mental Health Can Help You Make a Difference

Mental Health

Mental Health

Mental health treatment draws a lot of controversy, and this is not a recent issue but one that has been prevalent for generations. We could blame a lack of awareness and empathy for it. Also, mental health’s abstract existence tends to subject it to further negligence. Nevertheless, caring for one’s mental health is as important as tending to a bodily wound or any disease.

How Mental Health Specialists Make a Difference

A mental health care facilitator can be titled as either a psychologist, a psychiatrist or a counsellor. Over the past few decades, many institutions and organizations have made an effort to address all kinds of mental issues. Through their efforts, we see discussions about health, physical or mental normalizing. But you may want to take things further.

In that case, here are the top mental health careers that you can adopt and bring about a change:

Pastoral Counsellor

Specializing in clerical and pastoral education, a pastoral counselor may also contribute to the mental health care industry. They usually approach mental health issues with spiritual guidance, assisting the patient in healing themselves through the power of their faith. One-to-one and group therapies include prayers, scriptures, and religious principles.

Annual Income: $55,649

Certified Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counsellor

Drug abuse has become common, especially in youngsters and teens. The addiction and withdrawal symptoms make such counseling even more sought after a career option. Those addicted face extreme signs and discomforts related to mental health. This counseling does not limit itself to the drug abusers but also acts in spreading awareness against substance abuse to others.

Annual Income: $40,154

Clinical Social Worker

Mainly based in private practice clinics, hospitals, and healthcare agencies, clinical social workers are one of the top mental health care providers. They work holistically to assess, diagnose, treat, and counsel individuals who are suffering from mental health issues. Professionals offer services to families, employees, individuals, and groups. Their medical approach mainly focuses on psychotherapy and counseling.

Annual Income: $62,000-$63,000

Marriage and Family Therapist

It would be wrong to say that a couple or family has no interpersonal issues. Often, they can be resolved domestically, but there’s no shame in seeking external help. In most cases, an expert opinion can always prove beneficial. Situations, where a marriage and family therapist can make a difference, include when a partner is going through post-TBI symptoms, an illness, etc. Does bringing families back together sound like your style? Then you should consider this field. However, such therapists should at least have a master’s in the subject.

The BLS clearly states the varying income of family, child and social mental healthcare workers and updated information.

Annual Income: $32,000-$60,000


When referring to a mental health care practitioner, a psychologist could mean a lot of things. A psychologist’s specialization could be in child psychology, clinical psychology, industrial-organizational psychology, geropsychology, etc.

A certified psychologist must possess a Ph.D. or other course certification relevant to their field. However, a psychologist cannot prescribe medications. Their treatment approach is majorly therapeutic and counseling.

As a psychologist, you can work in a school, clinic, or even in a business setting. You’ll help patients cope up with their symptoms and offer corrective behavioral and emotional treatments on various issues. Child psychology, for instance, helps the practitioner identify mental health issues amongst teens and youngsters. These specialists play a huge role in helping lower suicide rates amongst children. Likewise, geropsychology is a specialization field that allows the health care provider to counsel people nearing old age and helping elders in nursing homes cope with their grief.

Annual Income: $79,000 (may vary according to specialization)


Psychiatry is a demanding endeavor not only during practicing but in the educational years as well. A 12-year intensive training will certify you as a professional psychiatrist. A psychiatrist is a great career to aspire to in mental healthcare. They are the physicians of the brain and have in-depth knowledge about many mental aspects. They can prescribe medications and provide all kinds of treatments from therapeutic to medicinal. Such health care providers carve long-lasting careers for themselves. Often, they address multiple mental health issues, which widens their area of expertise.

Annual Income: $204, 927

Corporate Manager

It shouldn’t be surprising to you that most of the mental health patients are from the working class. This is because of the social, professional, and corporate roles that they have to fulfill daily. Life can become stressful for them. However, it is also part of good business ethics that a company take care of its employees’ mental health and is ready to address them openly. Therefore, nowadays, many organizations prefer hiring heads or supervisors who possess a psychology degree.

Annual Income: $100,000+

Genetic Counselling

Many unfortunate couples have to face the experience of caring for children with genetic disorders. It becomes more difficult when the parents are unaware of the condition and have to keep up with the emotional turmoil as well. In such cases, mental health counsellors make an effort to help the couple cope up with the situation and prepare them emotionally and physically to tend to their child. Likewise, genetic counsellors can also provide services to genetically disabled clients.

Annual Income: $72,110

Here, we’d like to mention that an individual’s expertise and location matter when it comes to salaries. Many websites online provide stats for the job outlook and annual income. So, you may want to check the figures and see the pay scale relevant to your situation.

Mental health is a field that has a plethora of career options. Some of those listed above are the ones that are growing. But there is more for you to explore, like vocational psychology, forensic, and genetic psychology.  A good mental health provider should know where their interest lies. It is common that a healthcare provider loses themselves in the process and cannot cope up emotionally. We would suggest that you get the correct guidance and counseling before taking it up as a profession!

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