Help for Yourself
Oftentimes, people are uncertain about the kind of help needed to solve a problem or find support. The following is a list of the kinds of professionals (including those at FSAP) who may be able to offer information or support to you:
Mental Health Professionals
- Psychologists focus their studies on the human mind and behavior. While they cannot prescribe medication, they can diagnose and perform counseling and psychotherapy. Psychologists in NY State have adoctorate degree (PhD, PsyD, EdD). Most states license psychologists to practice psychology (LP or LLP).
- Social Workers provide various services, including accessing and treating mental illness, psychotherapy, care management services to help people with referrals, school and work connections, and other focused needs. They may have a master's degree (MA, MS, MSW, MSSW) or a doctorate degree (DSW, PhD), and most states license social workers (LCSW, LICSW, LMSW, among others.The license depends on experience and education.)
- Psychiatrists provide physical and mental evaluations, psychotherapy, and prescribe and monitor medications. They hold a medical degree (MD, DO) with special training in the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders, including at least four years of specialized study and training in psychiatry. States license psychiatrists. There are specialties within the field (e.g., Child/Adolescent Psychiatrist).
- Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC, LPCC) may provide diagnosis and counseling for individuals and/or families/groups. They have a master's degree in psychology, counseling, or a related field, and usually have two years of post-graduate experience.
- Advance Practice Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioners (PMHNPs) are registered nursed (RNs) with advanced degrees in Psychiatric Nursing. They diagnose, conduct therapy, and prescribe medications for patients with psychiatric disorders.
Other Professional Staff
- Health Educators come from a variety of disciplines (education, public health, psychology, etc.), and may have bachelors, masters, or doctorate level training in related fields (e.g., DrPH, PhD). Health Educators are not only concerned with the communication of information, but also with fostering the motivation, skills and confidence necessary to take action to improve health.
- Spiritual or Religious Advisers from many spiritual and religious traditions can provide support to help individuals and families move through difficult times.
- Bodywork Practitioners, including acupuncturists, massage therapists, chiropractors, yoga practitioners, and other professionals, can assist with relaxation, stress management, and other complementary/alternative forms of healing.