According to the American Psychological Association, in addition to the fifteen acknowledged specialty fields in psychology there are six areas of proficiency and practice. One of these proficiency areas is Treatment of Alcohol and Other Psychoactive Substance Abuse Disorders.
What is Treatment of Alcohol and Other Psychoactive Substance Abuse Disorders?
Throughout the United States, millions of people and families are living with the harsh reality of substance abuse disorder. Alcohol and Drug Addiction is sadly a rampant problem throughout the entire country. The proficiency offered by the American Psychological Association (APA) in Treatment of Alcohol and Other Psychoactive Substance Abuse Disorders was created to improve the treatment outcomes of individuals who seek help with their addiction. The APA offers a certification in this area to show that the psychologist has met the criteria and has earned the proper training.
How Do I Become Proficient in Treatment of Alcohol and Other Psychoactive Substance Abuse Disorders?
The majority of psychologists who earn this proficiency hold their doctoral degree. Some states do allow Master’s Level Psychologists to practice and earn licensure. To earn the APA certificate, psychologists must meet the following criteria:
- Possess a current state or provincial license in good standing.
- Have treated alcohol and other psychoactive substance use disorders for at least one of the last three years.
- Provide health services in psychology.
- Pass an APA College of Professional Psychology examination.
In order to remain certified in this specialty area, psychologists must complete eighteen hours of continuing education credits during each three-year certification period.
Where Can I Secure Employment Once I Am Proficient in the Treatment of Alcohol and Other Psychoactive Substance Abuse Disorders?
Most psychologists who work in the area of substance abuse treatment work in either a hospital or a substance abuse rehabilitation center. These centers come in many different settings and program designs. There are detoxification centers that offer patients medical and psychological support while they eliminate drugs or alcohol from their body. There are in-patient facilities that offer round-the-clock care for approximately one month. There is long-term in-patient facilities that offer 24-hour care for one to three months. A growing place for employment of substance abuse rehabilitation psychologists is intensive outpatient centers. These are centers that offer intense psychological counseling and social support five days a week in the morning or evening. This is often the step that individuals take after an in-patient stay.
What Salary Can I Earn in the Treatment of Alcohol and Other Psychoactive Substance Abuse Disorders?
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Handbook, a Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselor earns a mean average salary of $41,090. What must be taken into consideration is this includes professionals at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. According to the BLS, professional Psychologists earn an average annual salary of $69,280.
With the staggering number of people affected by substance abuse in the United States, this area of psychology will continue to grow. Those individuals who are interested in helping others overcome an obstacle, the field of Treatment of Alcohol and Other Psychoactive Substance Abuse Disorders is an excellent choice.