Discover your career path

Mental Health Practitioner

Diagnose and treat mental health disorders.

What does a Mental Health Practitioner do?

“Mental Health Practitioner” is a broad title that covers a lot of specific positions. You can work as a Psychiatrist, Clinical Psychologist, School Psychologist, Mental Health Counselor, or Psychiatric Nurse — and that’s just a small sample of the job options available in the field. Your job as a Mental Health Practitioner is to take care of your patient’s mental health, whether that’s through drug treatments or different therapy options, like talk or art.

Just as you can choose from a variety of job titles, you can also work with a wide range of mental health issues. You might have patients with serious issues like schizophrenia or split personality disorder, or you might handle more moderate issues like anxiety, depression, or obsessive-compulsive disorder. Your area of expertise and the type of facility you work in will dictate the type of clients you have. Regardless of your area, though, you always have the big responsibility of keeping detailed records of sessions and tracking your patient’s progress.

Mental Health Practitioners work in a number of different places, including schools, hospitals, prisons, and nonprofit organizations. It all depends on what you want to specialize in and who you want to work with. The job can be collaborative — you might work with a group of other Mental Health Practitioners or Doctors to help your patient. Or you might decide to have your own private practice.