Among medical professionals, there are general categories of providers (such as doctors and nurses) and specializations within these general categories (such as internists, neurologists, and pediatric nurses).
Finding the right provider is an important part of ensuring you get the care you need. You wouldn’t expect a pediatric orthopedist to treat an adult who has diabetes. You wouldn’t want to take a child who has a broken leg to be examined by a geriatric cardiologist. The same is true of mental health professionals.
Some of the common general types of mental health professionals include doctors, nurses, therapists, counselors, and social workers. Specialized mental health professionals include psychologists, psychiatrists, and experts who have earned a variety of credentials and certifications, such as the following:
- CCTSA: Certified clinical trauma specialist-addiction
- CCTSI: Certified clinical trauma specialist-individual
- LMFT: Licensed marriage and family therapist
- LCSW Licensed clinical social worker
- MSW: Master of social work
- LPC: Licensed professional counselor
- LMHC: Licensed mental health counselor
- PMHNP: Psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner
If you receive care in a residential setting or an intensive outpatient program (IOP), you may work with a variety of professionals who have an array of licenses or credentials. Facilities offering multidisciplinary treatment teams like this may be better prepared to offer the customized services that best reflect your specific history, needs, and goals.
Multidisciplinary treatment teams that include mental health professionals from a variety of backgrounds typically include experts in various forms of therapy and counseling. Once you’ve completed your assessment and received an accurate diagnosis, a multidisciplinary team of treatment professionals can develop and deliver the personalized treatment plan that’s best for you.