Health and health related issues have been one of the factors that have been highly considered in the lives of human beings throughout the ages. People have worked out on different ways that could be utilized to ensure that they stayed healthy in the society. However, total health in the society has not been achieved. People still get ill and as a result, they have to seek for medical interventions from health facilities. Therefore, every government on the face of the earth has worked out ways of improving the services that are offered to people whose health has been affected. In this regard, there have been improvements that have led to specialization of medical practitioners in different areas of human health in order to deliver efficient services. One of these areas is psychology.
There are different areas of specialization of psychologists that have been integrated into the health sector. These groups are categorized according to the work that they have been entitled to carry out as they seek to better the lives of the people whose health has been affected. These psychologists include Child Psychologist, Inpatient-Only Psychologist, Substance Abuse Counselor and Adult Psychologist. There are various functions that have been assigned to each category of psychologists. For a Child Psychologist, one of the duties that have been assigned to him includes provision of psychological preparation methods for children prior to medical procedures. Similarly, Child Psychologists are found in local schools as they deal with various challenges that children and adolescents face while in school.
The second category of psychologists i.e. the Inpatient-Only Psychologist deals with patients who have chronic illness. Therefore, they utilize various methods to facilitate adjustment and coping skills with patients suffering a chronic or terminal illness and to ensure that these patients are in a position to recover quickly and provide treatment for chronic pain. They also provide psychological counseling to prepare patients for an upcoming surgery. Another group of psychologists is Adult Psychologist. This group of psychologists major on dealing with psychological issues that adults face in their lives. As a result, they deal with adults through preparing them prior to surgical operation. On the other hand, they are also mandated with the work of identifying stress disorders and to offer stress relief interventions. However, these are not the only types of psychologists. As mentioned earlier, another group of psychologists that are very important in the lives of human being are the Substance Abuse Counselors. Since our society is plagued with drug and substance abuse related issues, there is need to have special people who can provide counseling to enlighten the society especially the young people on the dangers of substances and drugs and to help those who are already affected to be able to recover from substances and drugs so that they be able to be productive in the society and to lead normal lives. As a result, Substance Abuse Counselors collaborates with local schools as well as coordinate the use of recovery programs and structured programs for substance abuse, in conjunction with social workers.
Another category of psychologists that is equally important in the society but is not mentioned above is Health Psychologist. According to The British Psychological Society, this category of psychologists is mandated with the work of studying and analyzing behaviors of people that lead to certain characteristics in the society especially and formulating appropriate strategies to avert a slump into damaging behaviors by people in the society. Therefore, just as Substance Abuse Counselors, they also work on reforming the character of people who have had damaging behaviors in order to help them adjust back into the society. They are therefore able to achieve this by developing rehabilitation programs that aid in aligning the lives of these people to fit in the rest of the society. On the other hand, they are tasked with the work of examining psychological phenomena of illness and developing programs that helps people to manage their health status in the society thus promoting health in such societies.
The duties that have been assigned to each of these job titles stems from the fact that each category of these psychologists is trained to deal with certain health and psychological problems in the society and the medical field as a whole. As a result, the uniqueness of the health problems in the society demands that a patient is handled by a person who has a reasonable understanding of these problems. Since the psychological field is diverse, it is difficult for any one particular psychologist to understand how to handle every need that arises in the society. In this regard, specialization that leads to perfection in one particular area is important and core for any efficient and successful treatment of patients.
The psychological fields mentioned above are very important in contributing to the overall health of people in the society. To begin with, Substance Abuse Counselors work with hospitals to help patients with chronic diseases such as cancer and yet smoke to be able to quit this habit that shortens the days of their lives. According to St. Jude Children Research Hospital, these counselors work closely with these patients, helping them set deadlines on when they wish to quit smoking, and prepare them on how they can be able to stop such habits. On the other hand, Child Psychologists are actively involved in helping children who have learning problems to be able to develop their learning skills that would enable them to learn just as equally as other students in the society.
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According to The Research Medical Center, it is important for one to find the right doctor who will be able to diagnose and offer the treatment of the disease one is suffering from. As a result, specialization is important for psychologists to be able high treatment standards in their fields. Among these is the Adult Psychologist. These psychologists deal with issues related to adults such as aging and there is need for them to be highly qualified to be able to handle the delicate lives of these adults. Therefore, since many adults face multiple diseases, Adult Psychologists provide medical care that will not counteract or disagree with each other. In this regard, they are able to ensure that the health and lives of these adults are sustained.
Promotion of health is also an important factor in the life of each and every person. In the modern world, the medical bills have been rising and people have to adopt a Preventive method rather than curative method of a healthy living. As a result, Health Psychologists are core in the life of each and every person in the society. This is because they are able to identify issues that cause diseases and measures that their patients need to take to prevent such diseases. According to The British Psychological Society, these kind of psychologists have been found to encourage healthy living by promoting health habits such as excellent and consistent diet, exercising and examination of one’s health to detect any health changes that may arise in a person’s life thus enabling one to be able to deal with a problem before it becomes chronic and beyond control.
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Finally, the Inpatient-Only Psychologists play a critical role especially where it concerns the general recovery of patients who have been hospitalized for a very long time. Most of these patients give up on life long before their day of dying is near. Medically, when somebody’s mental system has given up on an issue, it becomes difficult to attain no matter the effort that is put in. Therefore, to help these patients to recover, the Inpatient-Only Psychologists works mostly on reversing such mentality and gives hope to these patients that despite the severity of their conditions, they are bound to recover. On the other hand, their presence in the hospitals serves a very important role to patient as they are able to understand that not everybody has given up on them despite their health conditions (Grohol, 2009).
Each of the fives fields of psychology has specific services and responsibilities that they are supposed to provide to their patients. First, the Inpatient-Only Psychologist has the responsibility of ensuring that the patient under his care is recuperating well and that there is a positive progress in the life of this patient. This is done through providing services to this patient that will help him to develop goals of what he wants to achieve while being under the care of the hospital. Similarly, this kind of psychologist has a responsibility of helping the patient to develop skills that are necessary for coping when he has left the hospital environment (Grohol, 2009). These responsibilities as offered by the psychologist will enable the patient to recover quickly as he/she would want to meet them before the said deadline is over. On the other hand, developing coping skills are necessary for one to be able to start being independent, a factor that every human being on the face of the earth would love to have in his life.
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The Health Psychologist on the other hand has the responsibility of providing adequate information that his patient needs in terms of leading a life that is healthy. As a result, he must be able to examine his patient’s health regularly to ensure that he is doing well. On the other hand, providing information to the patient alone is not a guarantee that one would be able to lead a healthy life. He has to ensure that his patient adheres to good health habits. As a result, one will be able spend less time in the hospital. For example, when one is overweight and is given a particular weight loss program to follow, such a person will be able to recover quickly only by sticking to the dictates of this health program (De La Cancela, Chin & Jenkins, 1998).
Adult Psychologists have a responsibility of diagnosing the really cause of problems their patients are facing. For example, many adults have reported stress-related cases in their lives. However, many are unable to explain the genesis of such problems. As a result, many spend time seeking for solution for symptoms rather treating the real cause of problems in their lives. Therefore, Adult Psychologists have that responsibility of diagnosing these problems, and then come up with treatment procedures that would enable their patient to recuperate and later on return to normal health. As a result, it is easier for them to treat these patients easily since the problem that is being tackled is addressed directly (New Leaves Clinic).
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Child Psychologists on the other hand are responsible for providing child support services that enhances the growth of children in the society. One of the areas among children that need this support is learning. Children with learning problems have to be helped to develop their learning skills in order for them to learn and grow just like normal children in the society. On the other hand, children who have emotional problems must be assisted to learn that the society is not against them. Instead, they must be helped to shed off their emotional problems through special counseling therapy that will leave them relieved at the end of the program. Assessment of the mental status of these minor is very important if they are to recover quickly since different mental status requires different forms of therapy (The British Psychological Society).
In conclusion, it can be observed that these roles sometimes overlap and one type of psychologist can be called in to handle problems that are not directly related to his training. For example, this is seen in among Substance Abuse Counselor and Child Psychologist whereby one counselor can be called in to act in the capacity of the other. Such overlap is dangerous since not all psychologists have sufficient knowledge in handling areas that are not of their specialization. Similarly, it is important that these roles are implemented as they are. This is because they are able to speed up patient recovery and thus enhance health in the society. On the other hand, failure in implementing them will continue to pose a risk to the lives of patients as they spend longer time recuperating. This is because these roles are supportive to health issues as they encourage and provide hope to the patient of a better life than the one he is in at that particular time thus causing them to strive for a better life, a factor that leads to wellness in the society.