Cazzum
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Ninomi
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Occupational therapy isn’t what you describe you want to do at all. It focuses on helping individuals recover or maintain essential life skills, not explicitly as a result of poor mental health either. For example, helping people dress themselves again, gain cooking skills, hold a pen.

Psychology is what you want, definitely.
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Cazzum
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(Original post by Ninomi)
Occupational therapy isn’t what you describe you want to do at all. It focuses on helping individuals recover or maintain essential life skills, not explicitly as a result of poor mental health either. For example, helping people dress themselves again, gain cooking skills, hold a pen.

Psychology is what you want, definitely.
Okay thank you for making that clear, just finding the course overviews very overlapping and a tad confusing.
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Lord Asriel
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(Original post by Cazzum)
Hi.

A bit confused.

Currently studying a Foundation year in computing and IT, but not really into it, I have a BPD Diagnosis and I've received a lot of mental health care and had a lot of issues over the past year, which i've begun to rely reflect on how helpful some of the people have been who've worked with me, and how I could utilise the things i've went through to help others in the same boat.

I'm not really sure of what courses are what and I'm getting pretty confused. So I want to study mental health, depression, anxiety, personality disorders, mood disorders, learning disabilities etc and then work in a sort of 1-on-1 setting you know, like talking with them and helping them understand their issues and moving forward, I guess kind of like how CBT and therapy sessions work?

I have no idea what course to do, they look so similar on the surface and I'm not really sure what is what. I understand psychology to be more a study of the whole human mind and everything to do with it, and i don't know how hands on occupation therapy is, if anyone could provide some information that would be great thanks
What you are talking about are theoretical and applied approaches to treating particular conditions. You aren't going to be able to get a degree in doing just that. Although you may lightly cover this material in an undergraduate psychology degree, this is usually the domain of specialist postgraduate training. A Psychology degree will have relatively little on this (perhaps a module or two out of a 3 year course) and will not in itself train you to become a practitioner. To do that will need to gain further experience and get a place on a doctoral training programme that focussed on applied psychology (e.g. Clinical, Counselling, Health etc). Average age of qualifying in these fields is starting to creep up towards 30 now. Alternatively, studying medicine, postgraduate training and becoming a psychiatrist will definitely cover these areas as well albeit with a greater focus on medical approaches rather than psychological ones.

A counselling qualification may be more geared towards individual client work, but will usually not specialise in PD, LD or some of the other material you talk about, but can get you working directly helping people. Psychiatric nursing training may be another option.

With regard to OT you can take this direction, but you will have to do this as an optional specialism once you have completed your basic training. The vast majority of OTs will not be doing this work, but I know a few that have gone onto train as CBT therapists as it is considered a core profession for the BABCP.

I guess the other thing to consider is whether or not you are in a good place to be helping others. I understand the sentiment and desire to help, but if you are still in the process of recovery and learning to consolidate work around emotion regulation and interpersonal dynamics you may not be in a place where you can focus on the needs of others. All of the above pathways are incredibly demanding, require high levels of self regulation and not reacting emotionally in very stressful situations. That is not to say it is impossible for people with MH difficulties to join caring professions, but self awareness and being able to gauge one's limits are key attributes.
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emilylgr
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Sounds like psychology you’re talking about. And if you decide that you do want to do occupational therapy, you can always do a postgraduate qualification after doing the undergraduate psychology, which is what I’m thinking of doing!
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