Psychiatrists in Chester County, PA

View cities in Chester County
Photo of Ericka Andrews, CRNP, PMHNP, -BC, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Ericka Andrews
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, CRNP, PMHNP, -BC
Verified Verified
Malvern, PA 19355
Ms. Andrews has over 18 years of extensive expertise in Nursing, spanning from Community Health to Psychiatry. Ericka utilizes a patient centered approach and therapeutic communication to address the needs, barriers, and concerns of each individual. She encourages her patients to focus on progress in place of perfection while moving towards an improved sense of well-being. Ericka’s care is based on the premise that patients respond best to a combination of therapy and medication. She places special emphasis on the integration of a psychotherapeutic approach with careful and limited use of medication prescribed only when necessary.
Ms. Andrews has over 18 years of extensive expertise in Nursing, spanning from Community Health to Psychiatry. Ericka utilizes a patient centered approach and therapeutic communication to address the needs, barriers, and concerns of each individual. She encourages her patients to focus on progress in place of perfection while moving towards an improved sense of well-being. Ericka’s care is based on the premise that patients respond best to a combination of therapy and medication. She places special emphasis on the integration of a psychotherapeutic approach with careful and limited use of medication prescribed only when necessary.
(484) 309-1830 View (484) 309-1830
Photo of Marie Kupis Bigas, MSN,  PMHNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Marie Kupis Bigas
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, PMHNP
Verified Verified
West Chester, PA 19382
Marie Bigas is a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner in Pennsylvania who has been practicing since 2021. She has a Post Master’s Certification as Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner from DeSales University. Marie has many years of behavioral health experience including children, adolescents, adults, geriatrics, developmental disabilities, and addictions. She has strong communication and listening skills and enjoys interactive education. Marie’s goals are to develop a relationship and plan with the patient. Outside of work, Marie enjoys hiking, kayaking, crafts, and sleeping.
Marie Bigas is a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner in Pennsylvania who has been practicing since 2021. She has a Post Master’s Certification as Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner from DeSales University. Marie has many years of behavioral health experience including children, adolescents, adults, geriatrics, developmental disabilities, and addictions. She has strong communication and listening skills and enjoys interactive education. Marie’s goals are to develop a relationship and plan with the patient. Outside of work, Marie enjoys hiking, kayaking, crafts, and sleeping.
(484) 779-9579 View (484) 779-9579
Photo of Emily Bernstein, MD, Psychiatrist
Emily Bernstein
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Paoli, PA 19301
Hello! My name is Dr. Emily Bernstein. I am a Board Certified Psychiatrist with almost 20 years of experience treating a wide variety of psychiatric illnesses including mood disorders, anxiety disorders, co-occurring substance use and mental health, ADHD and more. I provide both medication management and psychotherapy out of my office in Paoli, PA. I strive to build a trusting relationship with all of my patients and will work with you to build a treatment plan that you feel comfortable with. I am happy to offer both in person and virtual appointments to suit your needs.
Hello! My name is Dr. Emily Bernstein. I am a Board Certified Psychiatrist with almost 20 years of experience treating a wide variety of psychiatric illnesses including mood disorders, anxiety disorders, co-occurring substance use and mental health, ADHD and more. I provide both medication management and psychotherapy out of my office in Paoli, PA. I strive to build a trusting relationship with all of my patients and will work with you to build a treatment plan that you feel comfortable with. I am happy to offer both in person and virtual appointments to suit your needs.
(484) 372-3612 View (484) 372-3612
Photo of Jill Rodger, PMHNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Jill Rodger
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP
Verified Verified
Exton, PA 19341
Jill Roger is a board-certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner who has been practicing since 2022. Jill believes in approaching each person with compassion and understanding to foster a positive professional relationship. She provides medication management, supportive therapy, and psychoeducation. Jill believes individuals have their own personal and unique needs based on their symptoms and past experiences. Individuals should be actively involved in their treatment planning and setting goals they desire to achieve.
Jill Roger is a board-certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner who has been practicing since 2022. Jill believes in approaching each person with compassion and understanding to foster a positive professional relationship. She provides medication management, supportive therapy, and psychoeducation. Jill believes individuals have their own personal and unique needs based on their symptoms and past experiences. Individuals should be actively involved in their treatment planning and setting goals they desire to achieve.
(484) 232-3507 View (484) 232-3507
Photo of undefined - michaelsumdpc, MD, MA, Psychiatrist
michaelsumdpc
Psychiatrist, MD, MA
Verified Verified
Malvern, PA 19355
My practice focuses on Integrative Medicine, the concept of Mind, Body and Spirit. Mental illness involved the whole body not just the brain. Brian health, thinking habits, diet, exercise, stress response techniques and religious believe all affecting our mood and behavior. If people knows the factors influencing their anxiety, depression, intrusive thoughts and behaviors, they will be in control of their life. Our clinic had a TMS machine, which is FDA approved for depression treatment. TMS also had off labled indications for anxiety, PTSD, addiction, ear ringing, muscle pain, headache ect.
My practice focuses on Integrative Medicine, the concept of Mind, Body and Spirit. Mental illness involved the whole body not just the brain. Brian health, thinking habits, diet, exercise, stress response techniques and religious believe all affecting our mood and behavior. If people knows the factors influencing their anxiety, depression, intrusive thoughts and behaviors, they will be in control of their life. Our clinic had a TMS machine, which is FDA approved for depression treatment. TMS also had off labled indications for anxiety, PTSD, addiction, ear ringing, muscle pain, headache ect.
(267) 361-0250 View (267) 361-0250
Photo of Fatima Sattar, MSN, CRNP, FNP-C, PMHNPBC, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Fatima Sattar
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, CRNP, FNP-C, PMHNPBC
Verified Verified
3 Endorsed
Downingtown, PA 19335
My philosophy is that YOU must be at the center of care. While I may guide you in identifying your strengths it is my hope that your goals be created by you rather than assigned. Whether you have endured trauma, struggle with depression, anxiety, other mood disorders, gender identity, ADHD, or another issue my goal is to help you be the best version of you so you may live your best life. Sometimes that means medication, sometimes therapy, sometimes both. We will work together to develop an evidence-based and comprehensive treatment plan. It is my honor to walk beside you in the next phase of your mental health wellness journey!
My philosophy is that YOU must be at the center of care. While I may guide you in identifying your strengths it is my hope that your goals be created by you rather than assigned. Whether you have endured trauma, struggle with depression, anxiety, other mood disorders, gender identity, ADHD, or another issue my goal is to help you be the best version of you so you may live your best life. Sometimes that means medication, sometimes therapy, sometimes both. We will work together to develop an evidence-based and comprehensive treatment plan. It is my honor to walk beside you in the next phase of your mental health wellness journey!
(610) 686-8707 View (610) 686-8707
Photo of Suzanne Palekar, DO, Psychiatrist
Suzanne Palekar
Psychiatrist, DO
Verified Verified
2 Endorsed
West Chester, PA 19380  (Online Only)
Dr. Palekar became a psychiatrist because she loves hearing people's stories, motivations, and fears. She loves problem-solving to craft the most individualized and evidence-based treatment plan. She loves developing relationships with patients over time and truly getting to know them. Reaching out for help during a time of vulnerability is one of the hardest things you can do. Dr. Palekar is honored to be considered as someone who can help during these dark times. She has a history of working with all types of psychiatric illness, from minor anxiety to the most treatment resistant cases.
Dr. Palekar became a psychiatrist because she loves hearing people's stories, motivations, and fears. She loves problem-solving to craft the most individualized and evidence-based treatment plan. She loves developing relationships with patients over time and truly getting to know them. Reaching out for help during a time of vulnerability is one of the hardest things you can do. Dr. Palekar is honored to be considered as someone who can help during these dark times. She has a history of working with all types of psychiatric illness, from minor anxiety to the most treatment resistant cases.
(484) 868-9396 View (484) 868-9396
Photo of undefined - Jeffrey Naser MD, LLC, MD, Psychiatrist
Jeffrey Naser MD, LLC
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Berwyn, PA 19312
Jeffrey Naser MD, LLC is a private, fee-for service psychiatric practice in Berwyn PA. Dr. Naser's team includes Ms. Maria Capriotti and Ms. Terri Leone, both Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners. We provide psychiatric assessment, second opinions and medication management for children, teens and adults. We have significant experience working with a range of psychiatric challenges including Depression, Anxiety, ADHD, Autism, OCD, PTSD, and others. Our initial evalations are done in-person. We offer a choice for follow up visits, either remote or in-person. We work hard to provide a trusting and collaborative relationship.
Jeffrey Naser MD, LLC is a private, fee-for service psychiatric practice in Berwyn PA. Dr. Naser's team includes Ms. Maria Capriotti and Ms. Terri Leone, both Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners. We provide psychiatric assessment, second opinions and medication management for children, teens and adults. We have significant experience working with a range of psychiatric challenges including Depression, Anxiety, ADHD, Autism, OCD, PTSD, and others. Our initial evalations are done in-person. We offer a choice for follow up visits, either remote or in-person. We work hard to provide a trusting and collaborative relationship.
(484) 623-5966 View (484) 623-5966
Photo of Marina Makous, MD, Psychiatrist
Marina Makous
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Exton, PA 19341
Waitlist for new clients
Dr. Makous a Fellowship in Neuropsychiatry-trained, Board-Certified Family Medicine Physician with extensive experience in Psychiatry and Counseling. In the past she established mental health clinics around the world, treating individuals from different cultures for a variety of mental illnesses. After a 2-year Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Neuropsychiatry at Columbia University's Department of Psychiatry, she stayed on as an Assistant Professor. She recently relocated to Exton, PA, where she treats adults with depression, anxiety, neuropsychiatric complications of Lyme, etc. Dr. Marina Makous is astute, warm, and collaborative: she listens to her patients and follows them to ensure the best treatment outcome possible.
Dr. Makous a Fellowship in Neuropsychiatry-trained, Board-Certified Family Medicine Physician with extensive experience in Psychiatry and Counseling. In the past she established mental health clinics around the world, treating individuals from different cultures for a variety of mental illnesses. After a 2-year Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Neuropsychiatry at Columbia University's Department of Psychiatry, she stayed on as an Assistant Professor. She recently relocated to Exton, PA, where she treats adults with depression, anxiety, neuropsychiatric complications of Lyme, etc. Dr. Marina Makous is astute, warm, and collaborative: she listens to her patients and follows them to ensure the best treatment outcome possible.
(484) 997-7075 View (484) 997-7075
Photo of Gracie Yeo, MD, Psychiatrist
Gracie Yeo
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Paoli, PA 19301
Dr. Yeo is an American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology board certified psychiatrist specializing in Child & Adolescent Psychiatry as well as Adult Psychiatry. She offers evidence-based treatment that is individualized to the unique needs of each patient with psychotherapy and medication management. She has experience working with all ages from school aged children to older adults. She often coordinates with other providers (school counselors, teachers, therapists, family physicians) to ensure comprehensive and integrated care. Member of Rittenhouse Psychiatric Associates, a network of over 20 professionals in the Philadelphia area
Dr. Yeo is an American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology board certified psychiatrist specializing in Child & Adolescent Psychiatry as well as Adult Psychiatry. She offers evidence-based treatment that is individualized to the unique needs of each patient with psychotherapy and medication management. She has experience working with all ages from school aged children to older adults. She often coordinates with other providers (school counselors, teachers, therapists, family physicians) to ensure comprehensive and integrated care. Member of Rittenhouse Psychiatric Associates, a network of over 20 professionals in the Philadelphia area
(610) 854-8391 x17 View (610) 854-8391 x17
Photo of Denise Miller, MSN, CRNP, PMHNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Denise Miller
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, CRNP, PMHNP
Verified Verified
Downingtown, PA 19335
Psychiatry is my passion. I feel that kindness and empathy are not a learned attribute. I aim that all of my patients feel valued and heard, while under my care.
Psychiatry is my passion. I feel that kindness and empathy are not a learned attribute. I aim that all of my patients feel valued and heard, while under my care.
(610) 638-6737 View (610) 638-6737
Photo of Terri Geiger Leone, MSN, CRNP, PMHNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Terri Geiger Leone
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, CRNP, PMHNP
Verified Verified
Berwyn, PA 19312
Terri Leone, CRNP, is a Board-Certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner who is accepting new clients at the office of Jeffrey Naser, MD and Associates (voted one of Philadelphia Magazine's Top Doctors in 2017, 2019, 2020, 2021), a group practice in Berwyn, PA. Ms. Leone is trained in all areas of psychiatry, including Attention Deficit Disorders, Major Depressive Disorders, Bipolar Disorders, Anxiety Disorders and Trauma-Related Disorders.
Terri Leone, CRNP, is a Board-Certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner who is accepting new clients at the office of Jeffrey Naser, MD and Associates (voted one of Philadelphia Magazine's Top Doctors in 2017, 2019, 2020, 2021), a group practice in Berwyn, PA. Ms. Leone is trained in all areas of psychiatry, including Attention Deficit Disorders, Major Depressive Disorders, Bipolar Disorders, Anxiety Disorders and Trauma-Related Disorders.
(484) 285-4473 View (484) 285-4473
Photo of Nichelle Jones, DNP, PMHNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Nichelle Jones
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, DNP, PMHNP
Verified Verified
West Chester, PA 19380
My ideal client is dealing with a mental concern that is causing them distress that they are seeking relief from. They are looking for someone who will listen to their concerns and work with them to develop an individualized treatment plan that aligns with their unique goals. They seek a safe, nonjudgmental environment with a trustworthy provider to deliver quality care. Hi, my name is Nichelle and I'm a Board Certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner. I have over 10 years of clinical experience in treating psychiatric disorders and specialize in treating major depression, anxiety disorder, mood disorders, PTSD & ADHD.
My ideal client is dealing with a mental concern that is causing them distress that they are seeking relief from. They are looking for someone who will listen to their concerns and work with them to develop an individualized treatment plan that aligns with their unique goals. They seek a safe, nonjudgmental environment with a trustworthy provider to deliver quality care. Hi, my name is Nichelle and I'm a Board Certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner. I have over 10 years of clinical experience in treating psychiatric disorders and specialize in treating major depression, anxiety disorder, mood disorders, PTSD & ADHD.
(484) 451-7197 View (484) 451-7197
Photo of Kimberly Joffe, CRNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Kimberly Joffe
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, CRNP
Verified Verified
Paoli, PA 19301
Kimberly Joffe, CRNP is a Board-Certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner and part of Rittenhouse Psychiatric Associates, which treats children, adolescents and adults for in-office and Virtual Telehealth Psychiatry. Ms. Joffe is trained in all areas of psychiatry including Attention Deficit Disorders, Major Depressive Disorder, Bipolar Disorders, and Anxiety Disorders. Ms. Joffe is available for Psychiatric evaluations and medication management for adults 18 years of age and up. She is board certified to prescribe psychiatric medications. She is also a Clinical Instructor for The University of Pennsylvania’s School of Nursing.
Kimberly Joffe, CRNP is a Board-Certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner and part of Rittenhouse Psychiatric Associates, which treats children, adolescents and adults for in-office and Virtual Telehealth Psychiatry. Ms. Joffe is trained in all areas of psychiatry including Attention Deficit Disorders, Major Depressive Disorder, Bipolar Disorders, and Anxiety Disorders. Ms. Joffe is available for Psychiatric evaluations and medication management for adults 18 years of age and up. She is board certified to prescribe psychiatric medications. She is also a Clinical Instructor for The University of Pennsylvania’s School of Nursing.
(610) 854-9406 View (610) 854-9406
Photo of Anjum Irfan, MD, Psychiatrist
Anjum Irfan
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Exton, PA 19341
We have been serving Chester county for last 25 years. We take pride in providing client oriented and customized treatment plan. We specialize in treatment of Anxiety, depression, mood disorders, life transitions, job stress, marital problems and family adjustments. We use both biochemical /medical principles and psychological theory and practices. We also use alternative and spiritual methods when needed. Ultimately our goal is patient’s wellbeing, and outcome based treatment plans implemented with our patient as our team player.
We have been serving Chester county for last 25 years. We take pride in providing client oriented and customized treatment plan. We specialize in treatment of Anxiety, depression, mood disorders, life transitions, job stress, marital problems and family adjustments. We use both biochemical /medical principles and psychological theory and practices. We also use alternative and spiritual methods when needed. Ultimately our goal is patient’s wellbeing, and outcome based treatment plans implemented with our patient as our team player.
(610) 989-7618 View (610) 989-7618
Photo of Tina DeMure, CRNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Tina DeMure
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, CRNP
Verified Verified
Paoli, PA 19301
Tina DeMure is a Board-Certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner with over 20 years of combined nursing experience. She specializes in the management of Anxiety Disorders, Depression, Bipolar Disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, and Trauma. Her experience as a Family Nurse Practitioner allows her to better understand the interplay between mental health struggles and chronic medical conditions.Ms. DeMure treats patients ages 18 years and up in her private practice in Paoli, PA. She also provides virtual visits to individuals living throughout the state.
Tina DeMure is a Board-Certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner with over 20 years of combined nursing experience. She specializes in the management of Anxiety Disorders, Depression, Bipolar Disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, and Trauma. Her experience as a Family Nurse Practitioner allows her to better understand the interplay between mental health struggles and chronic medical conditions.Ms. DeMure treats patients ages 18 years and up in her private practice in Paoli, PA. She also provides virtual visits to individuals living throughout the state.
(484) 435-8980 View (484) 435-8980
Photo of Dr. Daisy Lara, DNP, CRNP, FNP, PMHNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Dr. Daisy Lara
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, DNP, CRNP, FNP, PMHNP
Verified Verified
2 Endorsed
Downingtown, PA 19335
Life can be hard… Life can be full of adversity, especially in the stressful world that we live in today. The good news is we’re here to help, to listen, and to nurture your mental, emotional and psychological health. We are a resource to help you sort through the complex emotions and stressors in your life. Whether it’s a specific trauma or a condition that affects your day-to-day life. Our goal is to help you live your best life. We will do a thorough assessment and develop a treatment plan that is personalized for you.
Life can be hard… Life can be full of adversity, especially in the stressful world that we live in today. The good news is we’re here to help, to listen, and to nurture your mental, emotional and psychological health. We are a resource to help you sort through the complex emotions and stressors in your life. Whether it’s a specific trauma or a condition that affects your day-to-day life. Our goal is to help you live your best life. We will do a thorough assessment and develop a treatment plan that is personalized for you.
(610) 609-7414 View (610) 609-7414
Photo of Edena Walden, MSN, PMHNP-B, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Edena Walden
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, PMHNP-B
Verified Verified
West Chester, PA 19380
Ideally my patient is as invested in their care as I am. They could have a variety of diagnoses but the thing they have in common is they are willing to give the process time, are open to new ideas, and know there is no magic pill to fix all their problems. My patients want to get to the best version of themselves and are willing to try therapy as well as medications to help them reach that goal. My patient wants an empathetic, listening provider who can guide their care based on the evidence, but tailored to their individual needs.
Ideally my patient is as invested in their care as I am. They could have a variety of diagnoses but the thing they have in common is they are willing to give the process time, are open to new ideas, and know there is no magic pill to fix all their problems. My patients want to get to the best version of themselves and are willing to try therapy as well as medications to help them reach that goal. My patient wants an empathetic, listening provider who can guide their care based on the evidence, but tailored to their individual needs.
(484) 233-5825 View (484) 233-5825
Photo of Dr. Heather John, MD, PhD, Psychiatrist
Dr. Heather John
Psychiatrist, MD, PhD
Verified Verified
2 Endorsed
West Chester, PA 19382
In this Chester County & Wilmington practice, Dr. Heather John, MD, works with adults (18 or older) with a variety of mental health difficulties, including depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, interpersonal issues, & sleep issues. For more details, to initiate a referral, or contact Dr. John, visit www.terrafirmapsychiatry.com. This practice is currently accepting new patients for psychotherapy, with the addition of medications when appropriate; it is not currently accepting new patients for medication management-only, or for split treatment (medication management in this practice, & psychotherapy with another professional).
In this Chester County & Wilmington practice, Dr. Heather John, MD, works with adults (18 or older) with a variety of mental health difficulties, including depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, interpersonal issues, & sleep issues. For more details, to initiate a referral, or contact Dr. John, visit www.terrafirmapsychiatry.com. This practice is currently accepting new patients for psychotherapy, with the addition of medications when appropriate; it is not currently accepting new patients for medication management-only, or for split treatment (medication management in this practice, & psychotherapy with another professional).
(215) 515-6504 View (215) 515-6504
Photo of Mutiat Ajibade, MSN , PMHNP, BC, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Mutiat Ajibade
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN , PMHNP, BC
Verified Verified
2 Endorsed
Downingtown, PA 19335  (Online Only)
At Essential Behavioral Health LLC, your mental health is our top priority. We are committed to exercising the greatest standard of practice to meet the mental health of our clients’ needs. Empathetic psychiatric care in Pennsylvania from a private family owned psychiatric practice. Nurse Practitioner Mutiat Ajibade has over a decade of experience and knowledge in mental health dealing with children, adolescent, adults and geriatric population.
At Essential Behavioral Health LLC, your mental health is our top priority. We are committed to exercising the greatest standard of practice to meet the mental health of our clients’ needs. Empathetic psychiatric care in Pennsylvania from a private family owned psychiatric practice. Nurse Practitioner Mutiat Ajibade has over a decade of experience and knowledge in mental health dealing with children, adolescent, adults and geriatric population.
(610) 646-5620 View (610) 646-5620

See more therapy options for Chester County

How does your Psychiatrist compare?

Number of Psychiatrists in Chester County, PA

70+

Average cost per session

$200

Psychiatrists in Chester County, PA who prioritize treating:

96% Depression
95% Anxiety
85% Bipolar Disorder
78% ADHD
77% Obsessive-Compulsive (OCD)
74% Medication Management
66% Trauma and PTSD

Average years in practice

12 Years

Top 3 insurances accepted

83% Cigna and Evernorth
83% UnitedHealthcare UHC | UBH
80% Aetna

How Psychiatrists in Chester County, PA see their clients

82% In Person and Online
18% Online Only

Gender breakdown

68% Female
32% Male
FAQs - About Psychiatrists and Psychiatric Nurses

How can I find a psychiatrist in Chester County?

The Psychology Today Directory enables you to search specifically for psychiatrists, using the drop down provider menu in the navigation bar, by city or zip code, or by the name of the psychiatrist. Search results provide detailed profiles of professionals, including their treatment approach and areas of expertise. In addition, listings provide important information about each psychiatrist’s credentials, fees, payment options, and insurance affiliations. Directory users can select psychiatrists who meet an array of personally-desired criteria, such as familiarity with a specific community or condition.

What is the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist?

Psychiatrists are medical specialists who focus on understanding, diagnosing, and treating diseases of the brain and disorders of the mind and behavior. As physicians, psychiatrists are trained to recognize the often-subtle biological causes of mental disorders and to monitor the effects of mental disturbances on physical conditions, such as heart disease. Psychologists are especially attuned to the influence of early experience on development and behavior, emotional and cognitive processes, the nature of personality, and social functioning. They are also trained to deploy an array of psychological tests—IQ tests, personality tests, behavioral assessments—to gauge a person’s functioning.

What is a psychiatric nurse practitioner?

A psychiatric nurse practitioner, also known as a mental health nurse practitioner, is a registered nurse who completes advanced training in psychiatric care, earning either a master’s or doctoral degree in psychiatric nursing, and in the U.S., passes a national certification exam. Like psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners are trained to assess, diagnose, and treat mental health conditions. In some locales, psychiatric nurse practitioners can offer the full range of psychiatric care, including prescribing and managing medication. In other places, they must work in collaboration with a physician.

Is everyone in the Psychology Today Therapy Directory a licensed psychiatrist?

The Psychology Today directory lists providers who offer legitimate mental health services to the public, including psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, and counselors. All psychiatrists listed in the directory have a valid license issued by the state(s) in which they practice and are certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. Providers whose license or primary credential has been verified by Psychology Today are signified by a “Verified” symbol. Some individuals or organizations provide services for which their state or country does not offer licenses, such as pastoral counseling. They may be selectively included without the “Verified” seal.

Can a psychiatrist prescribe medication?

Psychiatrists are licensed medical doctors who are trained to recognize the many ways body processes affect the functioning of the brain and mind. As physicians, they can prescribe medication. Patients who are prescribed medications will typically need to continue to see a psychiatrist so that the effects of the medication can be monitored. For many psychiatric conditions, including common disorders such as anxiety and depression, the preferred treatment is combination therapy—medication accompanied by psychotherapy.

Do psychiatrists offer therapy?

Psychiatrists are generally trained in a number of treatment modalities, including psychotherapy, pharmacotherapy, and, increasingly, somatic therapies. Typically, psychiatrists make a diagnosis and determine a course of treatment based on chemical or biological factors, using lab tests, brain scans and physical and psychological evaluations. While psychotherapy may be used in the first session to aid in diagnosis, it is not typically utilized in subsequent visits. In fact, after the introductory session, most sessions with a psychiatrist may only be 15-20 minutes in length and are largely focused on medication management. Many psychiatrists who do not offer psychotherapy work collaboratively with psychologists and other mental health clinicians and can refer clients seeking talk therapy to those providers.

How do I know if I need a psychiatrist or a therapist?

It is not always easy to know which type of mental health practitioner to choose. Many people are unaware of the root of their mental or behavioral problem. One way many people learn which type of care is best for them is by seeing their primary care provider first. Depending on the nature and severity of the symptoms, the physician may review their medical history or perform medical tests to determine whether biological factors are involved before making a referral. It is not necessary for a person to know precisely what type of care they need in order to seek help. Many psychiatrists and psychologists refer clients to each other depending on client needs.

Do I need a referral to see a psychiatrist?

A referral to a psychiatrist is often not required. However, seeing your primary care physician first can be helpful and actually prove to be a shortcut to getting what you need. Your PCP may have a clear idea whether psychiatric help is needed and/or which kind of mental health care would be most beneficial and refer you to the right type of practitioner. For that reason alone, some psychiatrists require a referral. Further, many insurance plans require a referral from a PCP if they cover all of part of the cost of seeing a specialist; if, however, you are paying out of pocket, you may not need a referral. In any case, a referral may speed the process of securing an appointment with a psychiatrist, especially in areas where there is a shortage of mental health specialists and new patients face long waits for appointments.