Becoming a Psychiatrist for Drug Addiction

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Becoming a psychiatrist for drug addiction is a very rewarding career choice where you will help men, women, and children through the complex process of substance abuse recovery. Addiction is a mental health disorder that affects over 50 million people across the U.S., and that number continues to rise each year. Treatment centers and hospitals are increasing their staff and offering above-average pay and benefits to attract quality candidates to combat this statistic. A google search of psychiatrist positions near me will show you which psychiatrists’ jobs are available in your city and state. 

Behavioral Health Jobs is an online database of jobs in the behavioral health industry. Our job board is updated daily with new jobs in administrative, technical, and clinical roles for all experience levels. Psychiatrists are in demand in several industries, from treatment centers and hospitals to private practices, schools, and government facilities. If you are interested in finding psychiatrist positions near you, check out all of the available jobs on the Behavioral Health Jobs website today. 

Psychiatrist vs. Psychologist

A psychiatrist for drug addiction works with patients in private and group therapy sessions using a combination of therapeutic techniques. These can include behavioral therapy, holistic therapy, and medication-assisted treatment. The difference between psychiatrists vs. psychologists is minimal but very important to understand. 

Both positions work closely with patients to help them process difficult emotions and feelings caused by a number of unique circumstances. Psychiatrists have medical degrees and are able to prescribe medications, whereas psychologists cannot. They rely solely on talk therapy using a variety of treatment methods.  

Psychiatrists are able to:

  • Prescribe medications
  • Diagnose illnesses
  • Manage treatment programs
  • Run group and private therapy sessions

Both of these positions have a deep understanding of how the brain works and how behaviors and actions are connected. They simply use different methods to treat the disorder. Behavioral Health Jobs has many psychiatrists and psychology positions available across the country. If you are interested in becoming a psychiatrist, continue reading to learn the education and work experience necessary to qualify for this role. 

Becoming a Psychiatrist for Drug Addiction

Becoming a psychiatrist takes several years of education and work experience before you can diagnose and treat patients. Psychiatrists also need to continue their education throughout their careers to learn new techniques and therapies to treat their patients. 

Education Requirements

Students who are interested in becoming a psychiatrist will spend 10+ years in school and residency programs to gain the skills and knowledge to treat patients successfully. They will spend four years working on a bachelor’s degree in biology, chemistry, psychology, or general medical degree. After graduating, students will then earn a doctor’s degree from a 4-year medical school program. 

Work Experience

Once completing the education requirements, you will then join a residency or internship position where you will spend up to 4 years working in a supervised clinical environment. Once completing the program, you will need to pass an exam from the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology for board certification.

At this point, you have enough education and experience to begin diagnosing and treating patients. 


Those who are interested in specializing in a specific field of psychiatry can continue their education through certification programs. These programs allow psychiatrists to specialize in a variety of fields, from addiction to clinical neurophysiology, forensic psychiatry, pain management, and other areas. 

Soft Skills

In addition to the above requirements, you will need a number of soft skills to thrive in this rewarding and challenging career. Some of these skills include time management skills, able to show/express empathy, excellent communication skills, active listening skills, and a strong desire to help others. 

Behavioral Health Jobs Has the Best Psychiatrist Positions Near You

At Behavioral Health Jobs, our job board is updated daily with new jobs in clinical, administrative, and technical roles. To begin their search, job seekers can filter their search criteria by experience and education level, type of employment, and industry. We also include helpful tips for perfecting your resume, nailing your interview, and other information to aid in your career search. 

If you are interested in working in the behavioral health industry, check out all of the available jobs on the Behavioral Health jobs website today.  

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