Pediatric psychiatry specializes in treating children and adolescents. While the psychiatrist may work with a team of other medical professionals, the primary focus of a child psychiatrist is to treat disorders related to childhood feelings, thoughts, or emotions. The psychiatrist must act in the child’s best interest, but he may also consult with juvenile court workers, school counselors, social agencies, and community organizations. As a medical doctor, a psychiatrist can spot and treat physical health challenges affecting your child’s behavior and emotions.
What is the Difference Between a Pediatric Psychiatrist and a Pediatric Psychologist?
While psychologists and psychiatrists may see children, there are notable differences. One significant difference is that a psychiatrist is a medical doctor with many years of training, including at least two years of residency in adult psychiatry and two years of residence in childhood psychiatry. Meanwhile, a pediatric psychologist also must earn an advanced degree, but their degree is in psychology.
Another significant difference is that a child psychiatrist can prescribe medicine while a pediatric psychologist cannot. Instead, the psychologist offers play, individual and group therapy. Medications can help reduce anxiety and depression, improve behaviors and help to reduce emotional outbreaks.
How are Pediatric Psychiatrists and Pediatric Psychologists the Same?
Both can diagnose children with a variety of mental health challenges, including:
• Conduct disorders
• Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
• Tourette syndrome
• Obsessive-compulsive disorder
• Post-traumatic stress disorder
• Eating disorders
When Does Your Child Need to See a Pediatric Psychiatrist?
In any year, 20% of U.S. children will be diagnosed with a mental health condition. These conditions are often first noticed by concerned parents. They include:
• Decline in academic performance
• Excessive fear and anxiety
• Inability to sit still
• Nightmares or night terrors
• Unpredictable temper tantrums
• Suicidal ideation
• Alcohol or drug abuse
• Self-destructive behaviors
• Expressed hostility
Learn more about our child psychiatrist services in Greater Milwaukee here:
If we can be of assistance to you and your child, please reach out today. We deeply care about helping you raise healthy children ready to become tomorrow’s leaders. Early diagnosis and treatment can help your child because the mind of a child is extremely moldable- so do not delay getting the help they need.