Health Careers Journal

Salaries in Mental Health Careers

People who work in mental health understand that a glamorous salary doesn’t usually come with the job. Highly educated individuals with years of experience have the best chance of landing a job paying more than $100,000 a year. However, most workers will earn more modest salaries. This article takes a brief look at eight mental health careers. Read on to learn what some people in mental health do to earn their paychecks.

Mental health counselors provide therapy for groups and individuals. Counselors must complete a master’s degree and licensing requirements before they are allowed to practice. Many counselors report to a high-level therapist or psychologist.
Average annual salary range – $23,500-$38,000

Substance abuse counselors provide therapy for families, individuals, and groups for drug and alcohol problems. Counselors must complete a master’s degree and extensive training for special certification and licensing. Counselors are clinically supervised by a high-level counselor or psychologist.
Average annual salary range – $38,500-$49,000

Mental health technicians work in a hospital or mental health facility caring for psychiatric patients. Technicians develop a therapeutic relationship with patients and assist them with daily care tasks. A high school diploma and up to two years of related experience may be required. Technicians regularly report to a supervisor.
Average annual salary range – $24,600-$32,100

Bereavement coordinators provide grief support services for individuals and families. Coordinators need to complete a bachelor’s degree with a mental health focus. A master’s degree is required to become a licensed bereavement counselor. Bereavement coordinators or counselors usually work under the supervision of a director.
Average annual salary range – $42,500-$57,500

Youth detention workers monitor teens with legal problems. Clients either live at home with probation services or are sentenced to a residential treatment facility. Detention workers do a variety of tasks including client observation, arranging activities and outings, helping clients with daily choices, and involving family members with treatment. They may be employed by the state government, local agencies, or private facilities.
Average annual salary range – $34,000-$54,000

Psychologists provide therapy, testing, and consultation to master’s level therapists. Professional psychologists have doctorate from an accredited university or professional school. Psychologists may report to a medical officer, but do not need clinical supervision to practice therapy.
Average annual salary range – $66,800-$87,500

Social workers help people by providing direct services and through social advocacy. With a master’s degree, social workers may also become licensed to provide counseling to their clients. Social workers are found in government departments, community agencies, and private offices.
Average annual salary range – $38,000-$46,000

Psychiatric nurses plan, document, and monitor the care of psychiatric patients. They also assist doctors with mental status exams and evaluations. Depending on training and education level, psychiatric nurses provide short term mental health therapy to their patients. They also educate their patients on good self-care practices.
Average annual salary range – $54,100-$65,200

Mental health careers come in all shapes and sizes; the same is true for their salaries. Whether you aspire to complete your PhD or start an entry-level job, mental health careers provide many people with a good living.


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