What kind of doctor do you see for depression? (a complete list)

In this article, we will list out what kind of doctor do you see for depression.

You might not know what to do or where to start seeking treatment if you think you may have clinical depression, particularly if you’ve never experienced this before. It is crucial to identify the signs that can signify depression first so that you know what to speak to your doctor about.

Clinical depression may have a number of ongoing symptoms, often referred to as a major depression. Some of the most common symptoms include:

  • Feelings of sorrow, desperation, or remorse
  • Losing interest in activities that you once enjoyed
  • Tired or restless feeling
  • Isolation 
  • Difficulty sleeping or getting too much sleep
  • Gain or Loss of Weight

What kind of doctor do you see for depression?

There are various specialists in medical and mental health who can help treat your depression and make you feel better along the way. To reassure your decisions about which one could be better for you, examine differences between them.

  • General practitioner
  • Psychiatrist
  • Psychologist
  • Counselor
  • Social worker
  • Psychiatric nurse
  • Case manager
  • Pediatrician
  • Occupational therapist
  • Therapist
  • Peer workers

General Practitioner (GP)

This is a medical doctor (MD) who has completed four years of medical school, followed by a residency and often a fellowship, also known as an internal medicine doctor. General practitioners and family physicians test for depression and can recommend antidepressants, although a doctor, psychologist, or counselor may also be referred.


A medical doctor (MD) is also a psychiatrist who is qualified to analyze, diagnose, and treat mental health problems such as depression. They are doctors who have received an undergraduate degree, graduated from medical school, and completed a psychiatric treatment residency. Medications such as antidepressants can be prescribed by physicians. Psychiatrists do not often have therapy services, but often provide therapists with referrals for care.


For people or groups, a clinical psychologist conducts counseling sessions. They also completed a five-year psychology doctoral program earning a Ph.D., or alternatively, a PsyD, which is less focused on science and focuses primarily on the clinical care of mental health disorders. Psychologists in most jurisdictions do not have the right to prescribe medicine.


Generally, a licensed mental health counselor (LMHC) has two to three years of graduate therapy training. This could include an emphasis on therapy for colleges, group counseling, marriage and family counseling, or counseling for drug abuse. Many states require counselors to be accredited by the Qualified Counselors National Board (NBCC). Counselors are unable to deliver prescription medications.

Social Worker

A certified clinical social worker (LCSW) completes approximately two years of counseling graduate training followed by an internship and supervised field experience. They don’t prescribe medications.

Psychiatric nurse 

At least a master’s degree in psychiatric-mental health nursing is held by the psychiatric-mental health nurse who may evaluate and diagnose disorders. Advanced psychiatric nurses work to provide psychotherapy as professional nurses in hospital settings, private clinics, and other care facilities, and administer medications in some states.

Case manager

A case manager is a health professional who offers continuous support to treat mental illness (perhaps an occupational therapist, a nurse, or a psychologist). They will keep track of your mental health, build treatment plans, and help you adhere to a prescription or therapy course. They help you and your family learn about your condition and cope with it, offer professional therapies, and connect you to events and resources in the community.

In the neighborhood, case managers work so they can visit you at home.


Pediatricians are physicians who are children’s health specialists. Pediatricians have completed at least 12 years of research and training at universities. Children with mental health conditions such as autism, sleep problems, ADHD, and other issues of behavior and growth can be supported by them.

When needed, they may also refer a child to a child psychiatrist.

Occupational Therapist 

In order to help you return to everyday activities such as work, research, cooking and cleaning, transport, and socializing, occupational therapists are educated. Some have extra mental health training or experience. To help with independence, come up with coping mechanisms, and help develop social skills, they should design events.


Someone who receives psychological therapy is a therapist. For example, a family therapist might help you work with members of your family through difficulties. To develop your interpersonal skills, a relationship therapist will help. With various levels of preparation, expertise, and experience, there are several types of therapists. Before you start therapy, think about what experience and accreditation your therapist has.

Peer worker

Peer workers have lived through mental illness experiences. They give hope that improvement is possible and will help you appreciate your perceptions and make sense of them.

Why an expert in Mental Health will be Best

It is very important that you receive a referral to a psychiatrist or other mental health provider if your general practitioner suspects depression, especially if this is your first time seeking treatment for depression.

While you might be given an antidepressant by your family doctor or general practitioner, they are not necessarily the best-trained doctor for treating depression. They do not have the qualifications to give you psychotherapy or are experiencing the way a doctor is in the complexities of administering psychotropic drugs.

Psychiatry is a combination of science and art. It’s not just as easy to treat depression as handing someone a Zoloft (sertraline) or Prozac (fluoxetine) prescription and sending them on their way. In order to find one that better relieves their symptoms with the least number of side effects, several patients may require multiple trials with various drugs.

In addition to the specifics of treatment, you could have a mental health problem that is entirely different and not depression. One such disorder is bipolar disorder, which can initially be misdiagnosed as depression, but needs a somewhat different treatment course.

Other possibilities are attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or an anxiety disorder, each of which, when it has not been treated, could manifest as depression.

Psychiatrists and other mental health practitioners are used to seeing a variety of diagnoses of mental health and have more experience teasing out what’s behind the symptoms than a family doctor or general practitioner.

Consider First Seeing a Psychiatrist

For certain new patients, there is a tendency to see a counselor or psychologist rather than a doctor for their initial mental health assessment. For certain people, this can be helpful, particularly if your case is not serious, but it’s sometimes not enough for others.

Health doctors are mostly just psychiatrists, which means they are qualified to administer drugs.

If your depression comes from a chemical imbalance, it won’t be enough to treat you with talk therapy. It’s better to see a doctor for your first visit, who can also prescribe drugs and give you psychotherapy if appropriate. This two-pronged drug and talk therapy approach are also the most helpful to patients.

Psychotherapy is a general term for a range of different verbal and therapeutic methods that are used through their mental health disorder or cause of underlying stress to help a person function. Psychoanalytic counseling, occupational therapy, cognitive therapy, and cognitive behavioral therapy are but are not limited to these strategies (CBT). Often, other practitioners in the area of mental health, such as psychologists and social workers, will rely on psychotherapeutic approaches and use them on their clients.

If your doctor is eligible to give you psychotherapy services, don’t be surprised if, while focusing on fine-tuning your prescription, they refer you to a clinical psychologist, therapist, or certified mental health counselor.

Difference between Psychiatrist and Psychologist

Between psychiatrists and psychologists, the three major differences are:

  • Psychiatrists are doctors of medicine, not psychologists.
  • Psychiatrists prescribe medications, but psychologists can’t.
  • Psychiatrists diagnose depression, administer recovery, and include a number of nuanced and extreme mental illness treatments. In order to support people, psychiatrists concentrate on delivering psychotherapy (talk therapy).

Many individuals are mistaken for each other by therapists and psychologists.

Psychiatrists and psychologists both understand how the brain, our feelings, emotions, and thoughts function. With psychiatric therapies, both can heal mental illness (talking therapies).

However, prior to doing professional training in mental health, psychiatrists attend medical school and become medical practitioners. Psychiatrists understand the connection between psychiatric and physical conditions because they are physicians. They can prescribe drugs as well.

Finding the right kind of doctor for your depression

To make sure you find a doctor or therapist who will place you on the right track for depression management, use this checklist:

1. Choose someone who can provide the desired services.

2. Make sure that a strong relationship is felt.

3. Find out about the approach to therapy for the client.

4. Find a collaborative plan for your goals.

5. Look for someone who is going to challenge you.

6. Seeking someone with a direct approach to treatment.

7. Expect homework.

In this article, we listed out what kind of doctor do you see for depression.

BetterHelp: A Better Alternative

Those who are seeking therapy online may also be interested in BetterHelp. BetterHelp offers plenty of formats of therapy, ranging from live chats, live audio sessions and live video sessions. In addition, unlimited messaging through texting, audio messages and even video messages are available here.

BetterHelp also offers couples therapy and therapy for teenagers in its platform. Furthermore, group sessions can also be found in this platform, covering more than twenty different topics related to mental health and mental illness. The pricing of BetterHelp is also pretty cost-effective, especially considering the fact that the platform offers financial aid to most users.

FAQs: What kind of doctor do you see for depression

What kind of doctor prescribes antidepressants?

Depression drugs are routinely administered by primary care providers, but if your condition is complicated or you do not respond to the therapies they have prescribed, your doctor may recommend that you see a psychiatrist who specializes in mental illness treatment.

Do I need a psychiatrist or psychologist?

The biggest distinction between the two groups of physicians depends on medication: it can be administered by a psychiatrist, while a psychologist can not. Psychiatrists will also perform talk therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, or other types of care in addition to providing treatment by medication.

What type of doctor can diagnose anxiety?

A medical doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating mental health problems is a psychiatrist. A psychologist and some other specialists in mental health will diagnose anxiety and offer therapy (psychotherapy).

Will a doctor prescribe antidepressants on the first visit?

If you or your doctor feel that the addition of an antidepressant can benefit your mental health treatment plan, your primary care doctor may prescribe one for you.

What should you not tell your doctor?

Here is a list of items that can stop being said by patients. Something which is not 100% honest. Loud, hostile, or sarcastic, something condescending. When we are off-the-clock, something relevant to your health care.

Complaining about other clinicians and everything else is an immense overreaction.

What is the most effective antidepressant for anxiety?

SSRIs such as Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, Lexapro, and Celexa are the medications most commonly used for anxiety. Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder have been handled with SSRIs.