Mental health problems can be classified as a one-off or an ongoing concern, feeling distressed or unwell for a reason that may not be easily apparent or may not be well understood by family or friends, or the wider community. It usually is very disconcerting and disruptive to everyday life.
Helping people cope with these types of concerns is the job of a wide range of professionals with skills in providing assistance, support and specific treatments. People who feel mentally unwell are commonly encouraged to contact many different types of experts in order to access effective treatment. This list often includes counsellors, psychologists, psychotherapists and psychiatrists as well as doctors in general practice. All these people can often provide excellent support and make a valuable contribution.
However in the mental health environment there are two key experts where people are most likely to be referred to: a psychologist and a psychiatrist, to obtain treatments for their mental health problems. Both are commonly accessed after a discussion with your family doctor.