In this career summary, you will find out what the job of A Mental Health Social Worker is about and what it is like.
After reading this, you will have a good idea on what the job is about and decide if this is the right career for you.
Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers assess and treat individuals with mental, emotional, or substance abuse problems, including abuse of alcohol, tobacco, and/or other drugs. Activities may include individual and group therapy, crisis intervention, case management, client advocacy, prevention, and education.
- Counsel clients in individual or group sessions to assist them in dealing with substance abuse, mental or physical illness, poverty, unemployment, or physical abuse.
- Monitor, evaluate, and record client progress with respect to treatment goals.
- Interview clients, review records, conduct assessments, or confer with other professionals to evaluate the mental or physical condition of clients or patients.
- Collaborate with counselors, physicians, or nurses to plan or coordinate treatment, drawing on social work experience and patient needs.
$47190 per year
$22.69 an hour
Mental Health Social Workers with little to no experience tend to make between $26230 and $32880 while the more experienced ones make over $55740 per year.
|Top 5 paying states||Hourly||Annual|
1 of the easiest ways to increase your salary as A Mental Health Social Worker is to move to a higher paying state like NJ. Right now, the highest paying states for Mental Health Social Workers are NJ, CT, CA, ME and NH.
However a higher pay at NJ doesn’t guarantee that you will make more because the living expenses at NJ might be 2x higher than where you are currently at now.
3 other factors that can increase your salary as A Mental Health Social Worker is the degree you hold, the industry you work in and lastly the company you work for (bigger companies like the Fortune 500 companies tend to pay more).
Recommended degree level
We asked other Mental Health Social Workers what degree they had when they got the job and most of them said they had a Master’s degree followed by Post-masters certificate.
Other than that we also asked them what did they major in and here are the most popular majors that came up.
Another popular question from our readers is what makes A Mental Health Social Worker successful or would they be good in this career.
Well, we found that most successful Mental Health Social Workers have these 5 skillsets.
In addition to that, 1 common characteristic among successful Mental Health Social Workers is they are good at Concern for Others. Here are the top 5 common characteristics.
|Concern for Others |
= Hot in-demand that most employers are looking for
Pros and Cons
Here are some reasons why you should and shouldn’t choose A Mental Health Social Worker as your career.
|Suitable for people who likes to help and teach others|
|Suitable for people who values achievements and are resultsoriented|
|This career is perfect for people who love to work indoors.|
|One of the fastest growing careers|
|Not suitable for people who likes practical and handson work|
|Salary is below average|
|It is very hard to get into this career. Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience is required for this career.|
There will be pros and cons for all jobs. The point is how much do the pros outweigh the cons to you.
A pro to you might be a con to Bob. A pro to Bob might be a con to you. We suggest reading about this career framework that can help you to find out what type of careers are right for you.
What is the job like
Is this job meaningful
40 hours per week
Regular (Set schedule and routine)
On a normal working week Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers work 40 hours per week.
83% of Mental Health Social Workers said they were satisfied with their job and 82% said they feel like their job is making other people’s lives better.
Is this right for me
Best personality for this career
The Helpers and The Thinkers
You can read more about these career personality types here.
People who are suitable for this job tends to like working with, communicating with, and teaching people. They like helping or providing service to others.
They also like working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. They like searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
How we can help
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They provide individuals, families, and groups with the psychosocial support needed to cope with chronic, acute, or terminal illnesses. Services include advising family care givers, providing patient education and counseling, and making referrals for other services. May also provide care and case management or interventions designed to promote health, prevent disease, and address barriers to access to healthcare.
They counsel with emphasis on prevention. Work with individuals and groups to promote optimum mental and emotional health. May help individuals deal with issues associated with addictions and substance abuse; family, parenting, and marital problems; stress management; self-esteem; and aging.
They diagnose and treat mental and emotional disorders, whether cognitive, affective, or behavioral, within the context of marriage and family systems. Apply psychotherapeutic and family systems theories and techniques in the delivery of services to individuals, couples, and families for the purpose of treating such diagnosed nervous and mental disorders.
They counsel individuals and provide group educational and vocational guidance services.
They provide social services and assistance to improve the social and psychological functioning of children and their families and to maximize the family well-being and the academic functioning of children. May assist parents, arrange adoptions, and find foster homes for abandoned or abused children. In schools, they address such problems as teenage pregnancy, misbehavior, and truancy. May also advise teachers.
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Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers
Written by: Stanley Tan
Mental Health Social Workers assess and treat individuals with mental, emotional, or substance abuse problems, including abuse of alcohol, tobacco, and/or other drugs. Activities may include individual and group therapy, crisis intervention, case management, client advocacy, prevention, and education.
4.5 / 5 stars