How to Become a Psychiatrist Step by Step- Skills, Jobs, Salary

How to Become a Psychiatrist: A psychiatrist is known as a doctor who specializes in mental, emotional, and behavioural disorders that occur within an individual and treats individuals with substance disorders by conducting assessments, therapies, and prescribing medicines. A psychiatrist assesses both the physical and emotional problems of an individual.

The word “Psychiatrist” was derived from Greek and Latin origins: “Psych is a Greek word that means soul, spirit, or mind, and “iateria” means healing, so by a Psychiatrist we mean a person who heals the mind.

To become a Psychiatrist in India, you need to have a bachelor’s degree in Psychology followed by a specialization in Psychiatry. After pursuing their degree, students can opt to work in hospitals, nursing homes, medical colleges, and research institutes. Those who wish to learn more about how to become a psychiatrist can refer to the details mentioned below.

What is a Psychiatrist?

A psychiatrist is a medical doctor who uses psychological methods such as evaluations, psychoanalysis, therapy, and medication to treat mental illnesses, mood disorders, and other mental health problems.
Also know the difference betweden Psychologist and Psychiatrist.

A psychiatrist is also someone who observes their patients’ behaviours.from beginning to end, attempting to detect the issues and their underlying causes. The following is a list that will help individuals understand the role of a psychiatrist:

  • A psychiatrist provides sessions, prescribes medicines, and makes individual diagnoses in terms of various disorders.
  • They talk to individuals about their history of trauma and determine their emotional and mental illnesses through their assessments.
  • A psychiatrist specializes in dealing with conditions that are rooted in biology or neurochemistry.
  • They prescribe antidepressants, antipsychotics, stimulants, mood stabilizers, and sedatives to help their patients gain control over their mental health issues.

How to Become a Psychiatrist?

Psychiatry as a career is beneficial for those who are great listeners, have a knack for helping others, and want to treat people with mental and emotional illnesses. Candiaes need to fulfil the set of traits that require them to be a Psychiatrist. After that, they are required to pursue their degrees and obtain a licence in psychiatry, from which they will be able to start their practise. A detailed plan consisting of the steps to becoming a Psychiatrist is mentioned below.

Step- 1 Identification of Core Skills  

There are a few core skills that are required to be a psychiatrist. Candidates who are looking for opportunities in the field of psychiatry must look for the core skills and work on them. The field of Psychiatry involves both soft and hard skills. By soft skills, we mean a more emotional and compassionate approach, and by hard skills, we mean analytical and logical skills. A table mentioned below consists of the soft and hard skills required to be a Psychiatrist.

Soft Skills Hard Skills
SensitivityScientific methods to solve problems
Communication skillsReasoning
CompassionAnalytical approach
Stress ToleranceMonitor developing changes

Step 2- Educational Qualifications for becoming a Psychiatrist 

Candidates must note that to be eligible to become a psychiatrist, they must fulfil all the educational requirements to become a psychiatrist. A list of all the important educational qualifications required to become a psychiatrist is mentioned below.

  • Candidates must first complete their 12th grade with subjects such as Biology, chemistry, and Physics from a recognised school or board.
  • To obatin abachelros’d degree, candidates have to appear for an entrance examination.
  • Candidates need to have an MBBS degree, and if they want to go further, they can opt for an MD psychiatry course that lasts for a period of 3 to 4 years.
  • Next, after completion of the bachelor’s degree, candidates can apply for licensure and practise as a psychiatrist in India.
  • Lastly, those wanting higher jobs can pursue other degrees after their bachelor’s and gain better jobs in the field of Psychiatry.

Step 3-  Pursuing Internships 

Candidates must note that it is mandatory to pursue an internship to become a Psychiatrist in India. While candidates are pursuing their MBBS degree, they are required to pursue internships in accordance with their course. Candidates must ensure that they pursue at least one year of internship during the course of their educational degree. By interning, candidates will be able to get an idea of the workings of a psychiatrist, how one handles their patients, etc. 

Step 4- Applying for Medical License 

Candidates who wish to practise Psychiatry in a state in the country are required to obtain a medical licence. After candidates have obtained the licence for general psychiatric certification, it will be valid for a period of 10 years. Most states have licencing systems of their own, and candidates are required to meet their requirements to obtain the licence. It is mandatory for an applicant to pass all the rules and procedures to obtain a licence.

Step 5-  Certification Courses 

Candidates must note that they can add multiple certifications to their degree. By obtaining different types of certifications, candidates will gain knowledge and be able to perform better in the workforce, which will help them get along better with their colleagues and people who need their help. Certifications are completely optional, and they can choose the type of certification they need and in what area of specialisation.

Types of Psychiatry

There are four main types of Psychiatrists. Clinical Psychiatrists, Forensic Psychiatrists, Correctional Psychiatrists, and Child and Adult PsychiatristsThere are multiple types of psychiatry where different roles are delegated. Those who wish to know more about the types of Psychiatry can refer to the points mentioned below.

  • Clinical Psychiatry: They assess and diagnose patients suffering from mental illnesses. This sort of psychiatrist’s work involves administering medicines or recommending therapy based on the client’s needs.
  • Forensic Psychiatrists: These psychiatrists specialise in this branch of psychology in order to deal with criminology. A psychiatrist deals with not only the law but also the medical aspects of medicine. A foreseen psychiatrist deals with criminals who are in prison.
  • Geriatric Psychiatry: A geriatric psychiatrist’s job role comprises conducting tests and taking measures in order to treat the illnesses of people who are of old age. They are more important for a developing nation than for an developed nation.
  • Correctional Psychiatry: Correctional psychiatry involves treating convicts or prisoners who have committed serious crimes and are mentally ill. People who work in jails and homeless areas must also have a thorough knowledge of how to deal with such people when they are there.
  • Child and Adult Psychiatry: A child and adult psychiatrist is someone who deals with the problems and issues of children and adults and their families. They deal with mental and emotional problems such as anxiety, depression, eating disorders, and many other problems.

Salary of a Psychiatrist in India 

The average salary that is paid to a psychiatrist ranges from Rs. 1,23,252 to Rs. 1,957,428. An important aspect that has to be kept in mind is that those who have a lot of experience and a good work ethic get higher wages. A table containing the average salary of a psychiatrist is mentioned below.

Average salary of an entry level  Psychiatrist in IndiaINR 9.07 Lakhs
Average salary of an early career Psychiatrist in IndiaINR 9.15 Lakhs
Average salary of a  mid career Psychiatrist in IndiaINR 10 Lakhs
Average Salary of an experienced Psychiatrist in IndiaINR 12 Lakhs
Average Salary of a late career of a Psychiatrist in IndiaINR 15 Lakhs
Average Salary of a Psychiatrist in India 

List of Certifications for Psychiatry 

There are a few certifications that benefit candidates in multiple ways. A list of all the certificates for Psychiatry offered by various institutions is mentioned below.

  •  IIM Calcutta Post Graduate Certificate in Healthcare Management (PGCHM)
  •  Developing Expert Educators for Healthcare Professions
  • Certificate Programme in Hospital & Health Care Management
  •  Fundamentals of Rural Sociology and Educational Psychology 

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FAQs Related to How to Become a Psychiatrist

  1. Can a person become a Psychiatrist without an MBBS?

    Candidates cannot become psychiatrists without an MBBS degree.

  2. How long does it take for an employee to become a Psychiatrist in India?

    It takes 7-8 years of educational experience for a person to become a Psychiatrist in India.