What is the difference between a psychologist and a psychiatrist?
The simplest way to describe the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist is that a psychiatrist is a medical doctor, while a psychologist is not. The suffix “-iatry” means “medical treatment,” and “-logy” means “science” or “theory.” So psychiatry is the medical treatment of the psyche, and psychology is the science of the psyche.
A psychologist primarily aids their patients through counselling and psychotherapy. He or she may sometimes hold a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) and be called “doctor,” but is not a medical doctor (M.D.).
A psychiatrist, on the other hand, is a medical doctor, and while he/she may also perform psychotherapy, he/she can additionally prescribe medications and perform medical procedures such as electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).