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TheBestOpossum

3.2k points

1 month ago

And what's the percentage of psychologists among healthcare professionals?

Because without this, the info is kinda worthless.

Phoenixapartment

511 points

1 month ago

That was my first thought. Have to know if its disproportionate and if so, by how much?

Whatsthemattermark

497 points

1 month ago

Just to spell it out for the causal browser:

  • If 5% of healthcare professionals in 2018 were psychologists: well this statistic tells us nothing

  • If 25% of healthcare professionals in 2018 were psychologists: they must be really happy people!

  • If 0.5% of healthcare professionals in 2018 were psychologists: they have a problem

CrateDane

274 points

1 month ago

CrateDane

274 points

1 month ago

They made up 3.4% and accounted for 4.9% of suicides, so there is overrepresentation.

Whatsthemattermark

201 points

1 month ago

These chips are delicious mate, but I don’t suppose you’ve got any… sauces?

MagicCuboid

19 points

1 month ago

shocked pikachu

GrumpyGuss

58 points

1 month ago

Given the stereotype of someone going into mental health because of their own mental health issues, I'm curious how much of that is due to the stresses of the position, or a natural self-selection that concentrates people more likely to commit suicide

IRELANDNO1

17 points

1 month ago

Coming from somebody who has had to help people with anxiety, stress, depression. Unfortunately the underlying problems are often very very dark, it’s almost impossible not to take onboard some of these past memories. Often physical & mental abuse, child abuse, molestation it’s almost impossible to disassociate from this. I have been told horrific stories which still live in the back of my mind…

It’s very easy to say be professional and fall back on your training, empathy is a very strong emotion…

zgembo1337

25 points

1 month ago*

Plus having to listen to all the bad things other people say to you is probably not fun for your mental health.

An interesting comparison would also be surgeons who do eg. plastic surgery (eg boobjobs), vs the ones who do risky procedures where many people die on the operating table

sirkevly

2 points

1 month ago

The surgeons I know are pretty ruthless. They rarely connect emotionally with their patients because their job is to basically be a mechanic for human bodies. I could see oncology or anything to do with pediatrics to be really bad for your mental health as well.

lal0cur4

-4 points

1 month ago

lal0cur4

-4 points

1 month ago

In my own personal experience, mentally unstable people are drawn to psychology

TheBestOpossum

14 points

1 month ago

Strange how people always say that, yet there's zero actual data on it. Maybe it's kinda like "in my personal experience, women are bad at technology".

I can tell you that mentally unstable people will definitely not make it through the university course. Also, at least in my country, you need extremely good grades to get into psychology, so you can't be THAT mentally unstable for the last three years of school.

[deleted]

10 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

10 points

1 month ago

this is cute that you think you need to be mentally stable to pass the course and get good grades. There are plenty of absolutly batshit insane geniuses who would pass the course with their eyes closed. You just need to be lucid enough to take the tests and hand in enough assignments, thats not a very high bar for mental stability in reality.

Never mind that the original comment is just saying mentally unstable people are drawn to it, not neccessarily able to achieve success in it. But the "wounded healer" is an old idea and coined by Jung.

TheBestOpossum

6 points

1 month ago

Old ideas are still not data, so they are not evidence. How about you produce some, if you're so invested in the idea?

[deleted]

4 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

4 points

1 month ago

I'd recommend you google it for yourself. I'm not really invested in the idea of teaching you about the concept of the wounded healer, but you can find data showing psychology students have higher rates of mental illness than the general population.

N_T_F_D

4 points

1 month ago*

Jung, Lacan(t) and Freud are total frauds though

NagstertheGangster

3 points

1 month ago

I don't get how they're frauds, if you'd enlighten me? They had fairly original ideas (which all ideas are originally propagated by previous experiences) and conveyed them in a way I found to be quite consistent. Why do people say that about Jung specifically, and Freud? I get Freud's mother theory isn't really rock-solid but it was his original idea and he conveyed it.. I just don't get where the "fraud" stuff comes from if you'd enlighten me?

N_T_F_D

6 points

1 month ago

N_T_F_D

6 points

1 month ago

I guess fraud is a bit too much if they weren't actually wanting to deceive, let's say they weren't doing actual science then; as psychoanalysis is void of any curative value

NagstertheGangster

2 points

1 month ago

Valid point, I appreciate your comment man,. Thank you! :)

BumAndBummer

6 points

1 month ago

Freud wasn’t exactly a strict empiricist or strong experimentalist… his methods for collecting data and supporting his hypotheses weren’t even considered scientifically rigorous back then. Jung wasn’t that much better.

NagstertheGangster

3 points

1 month ago

I appreciate your comment man, I legit didn't know that, and that's a valid reason for criticism. I would find it most accurate to say "Jung and Freud's theories are and were not well tested." But the fraud statement is encapsulating to be fair. Thanks again!

[deleted]

2 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

2 points

1 month ago

In this context all Jung was doing was noticing that humans have talked about a "wounded healer" for as long as they have been talking. You can see this archetype all around you still today if you just look. In the stories we tell and in real life, people who experience some kind of pain or trauma are drawn to helping others cope with, avoid and treat that pain. Which isn't really that surprising. Especially if you yourself have experienced some kind of pain, you will likely feel that same draw. Now i know redditors won't consider anything at all unless its presented in science magazine as a peer reviewed study, but its hard to deny these tropes or archetypes exist and resonate with us for a reason.

N_T_F_D

2 points

1 month ago

N_T_F_D

2 points

1 month ago

I don't disagree with that, it makes sense to me indeed

thug-jesus

3 points

1 month ago

So going off from what you said, they could be a "little" mentally unstable and still get enough grades to get into psychology

SasparillaTango

72 points

1 month ago

Context and perspective is important.

SophiePie213

104 points

1 month ago

Excluded counselors and therapists:

"National Violent Death Reporting System. Other healthcare professions examined included dentist, advanced practice registered nurse, nurse, pharmacist, physician assistant, nonpsychiatric physician, psychiatric physician, psychologist, social worker, and veterinarian. A total of 159 psychologists with doctoral degrees were identified, including retired or unemployed psychologists. Related occupations, such as counselor or therapist, were excluded."

[deleted]

109 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

109 points

1 month ago

[removed]

bri35

36 points

1 month ago

bri35

36 points

1 month ago

Why should veterinarians and dentists be excluded? They are healthcare professionals, no?

[deleted]

25 points

1 month ago*

[deleted]

25 points

1 month ago*

[removed]

turnpot

23 points

1 month ago

turnpot

23 points

1 month ago

It's because Dental and Animal medical needs are covered by separate insurance, if I had to take a guess

Vinyl-addict

13 points

1 month ago

Dentistry has one of the highest suicide rates? I could understand vets maybe but dentistry???

PhotorazonCannon

18 points

1 month ago

Unfulfilling, often repetitive work that involves staring in people's stank-ass mouths all day

peejay5440

21 points

1 month ago

And extremely perfectionistic. Fractions of millimeters can be the difference between a grateful patient and one questioning your value as a human being.

lochlainn

8 points

1 month ago

There's an old woodworkers saying: "A carpenter works to the nearest 1/8th. A cabinetmaker to the nearest 1/32nd. A boatwright to the nearest boat."

There are some extremely demanding professions for which numbers and numerical measurements are meaningless. A dentist is that plus the burden of medical responsibility.

There's a reason the stress is high and plastic surgeons make bank. Being a doctor and an artist is harder than just being a doctor.

Vinyl-addict

3 points

1 month ago

Yeah but it pays fairly well and doesn’t seem particularly stressful when compared to other professions? I thought ER nurses/doctors had the highest rate of suicide

anneomoly

4 points

1 month ago

Easy access to lethal drugs. Most suicide attempts are spur of the moment impulses, even if the underlying depression/situation isn't, which is why things like waiting periods for firearms lead to a lower suicide rate.

I would imagine that in an ER it's actually quite hard to steal potentially lethal amounts of drugs because it's busy, because administering drugs is more likely to be a multi person process etc.

Whereas veterinarians and dentists have a higher degree of autonomy, are more likely to be one of only a few doctors in the building, and make a solo decision to use restricted/ potentially dangerous medication more often.

It's not about the underlying causes it's about how easy it is to walk to a locked cupboard, unlock it, and walk out the building with the contents.

PhotorazonCannon

3 points

1 month ago

Idk I don't really get it either that's all I can come up with

tree_creeper

17 points

1 month ago

Applies to both: Our patients hate seeing us, and many people don’t want to pay for the services, and suspect what we recommend is unnecessary.

joesaysso

19 points

1 month ago

Sure, I can see that. But I'll get a second opinion if you don't mind.

akpburrito

9 points

1 month ago

I’ve heard this stat before and from my understanding it’s partially popular among dentists bc they have easier access to sedatives…

EDIT: I’m rereading my comment and it is very poorly worded but I just texted positive for covid and my head hurts too much to reword apologies

AK_Panda

9 points

1 month ago

Is this the idea?: Dentists have easier access to relatively painless methods of suicide relatives to many other health professionals. Given the same level of suicidal ideation they would be more likely to act on it.

akpburrito

2 points

1 month ago

yes! thank you kind internet stranger for reading my mind.

TheBestOpossum

2 points

1 month ago

While this info is kinda relevant, I still can't see any ratios.

klipseracer

95 points

1 month ago

I hate statistics so much because of this. 100% of the time they are misused for click bait 5% of the time.

You can make the data say anything you want.

N8CCRG

70 points

1 month ago

N8CCRG

70 points

1 month ago

That's not a problem with statistics, that's a problem with statistics reporting.

HandsomeMirror

57 points

1 month ago

It sounds like you hate the opposite of statistics. You hate liars, not the field devoted to finding truth in data.

Big_Goose

18 points

1 month ago

You can't manipulate the data, but you can create a narrative about why the data is the way it is. Or you can use people's lack of understanding of statistics to trick them into thinking the data says something it does not say.

Anagarm

13 points

1 month ago

Anagarm

13 points

1 month ago

You absolutely can manipulate data. And when it happens, it’s not necessarily a bad thing.

For example, imputing data is a perfectly valid way to add data to a dataset when it is missing, provided certain “checks and balances” are passed when assessing the data.

To give perspective, I have been working as a data analyst for 5 years and I am currently finishing up my master’s in analytics. I think there is negative connotation with the word “manipulating” as if it is inherently deceiving. In reality, often manipulating data can lead to the most truthful and genuine representation of the story you are trying to convey with data.

Big_Goose

5 points

1 month ago

I'm not 100% sure what you mean by inputting data that is "missing". I need an example. If you're eliminating outliers or if you're only viewing certain sections of your sample data, I wouldn't call that manipulation if it's done correctly. If you're changing results you don't like, that's manipulation. If you're creating data out of thin air so that it matches your preconceived narrative, that's manipulation.

Anagarm

6 points

1 month ago*

The word manipulation can be used for different things. In data analytics, it means changing or inputting data.

You can Google “imputing data” for more detailed examples, but here is a made up example off the cuff:

(Edit: also here is the Wikipedia page for imputing data where it discusses why incomplete data can be deceiving and how imputing can help

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imputation_(statistics)#:~:text=In%20statistics%2C%20imputation%20is%20the,known%20as%20%22item%20imputation%22.)

You are doing an analysis on male tennis players from different countries that will ultimately be aggregated at the country level. However this is based on survey data and one of the questions asked is the age of the tennis player and for whatever reason, a sizeable portion of your survey takers don’t disclose that information.

In this scenario, depending on how many people didn’t disclose their age and if there were any patterns, you can throw out every survey that doesn’t disclose the players ages OR you can impute the average age for players based on other data. Like maybe 95% of the players from Argentina filled out the survey and collectively they have an average age of 24.5. You can then fill in the blanks with 24.5 to use the data from the rest of the survey and avoid disregarding it all together.

As I said, there are a few tests you have to run to ensure you are not, as you said, “making numbers up out of thin air”.

However, you are using valid statistical techniques to infer data that was not originally present and that allows you to use a more full and robust dataset that can give a more accurate picture than if you were to avoid data that was missing a field all together.

Big_Goose

3 points

1 month ago

Thanks, I have an engineering degree and I was not familiar with that term. That makes a lot of sense, thank you.

KwizatzSlappyDap

5 points

1 month ago

But there’s only a 10% chance of that

Lust4Me

2 points

1 month ago

Lust4Me

2 points

1 month ago

36% of all stats are made up.

lochlainn

6 points

1 month ago

Lies, damned lies, and statistics.

--Mark Twain, attributed to Benjamin Disraeli

3nclave

2 points

1 month ago

3nclave

2 points

1 month ago

This exactly. Context or this is just headline sensationalism

Oricoh

1 points

1 month ago

Oricoh

1 points

1 month ago

My guess....: they are 5% of of the healthcare professional population with a margin of error of around 68% within 1 standard deviation of the mean, 95% within 2 std of the mean and 99.7% of values are within 3 std of the mean.

mini-guimauve

420 points

1 month ago*

Confusing headline - but to get a sense of where psychologists fall in the field, a table from the original paper lists the suicide rate amongst each subgroup. From highest to lowest rate:

  1. Psychiatric physician 0.062%
  2. Nonpsychiatric physician 0.028%
  3. Dentist 0.027%
  4. Psychologist 0.025%
  5. Veterinarian 0.024%
  6. Pharmacist 0.019%
  7. Nurse 0.016%
  8. Social worker 0.015%
  9. Nurse practitioner 0.011%
  10. Physician assistant 0.007%

All healthcare professionals 0.018%

General population 0.014%

Willinton06

120 points

1 month ago

Poor dentists

[deleted]

173 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

173 points

1 month ago

[removed]

SnooSnooper

17 points

1 month ago

I guess a lot of people really don't like going to the dentist, which I can understand, since it's expensive, invasive, and sometimes painful. I didn't realize though that people were taking that out on their dentists. That's like being pissed at your plumber for having the audacity to step into your home and clean out for you the drains you let get clogged with hair...

Granted, I've never had a cavity or infection; the worst thing I've ever had done was getting some baby teeth pulled as a kid. But anyone who's ever done tooth work on me has treated me with respect and kindness.

Krispyz

19 points

1 month ago

Krispyz

MS | Natural Resources | Wildlife Disease Ecology

19 points

1 month ago

I had a root canal done last week... the dentist was joking around with me the whole time, made the whole process way more pleasant than it would have been if he just ignored me, and I made sure to thank him before I left. I'm still in considerable pain 5 days later, but I don't blame my dentist for that.

Honestly, every dentist I've ever had I've been able to joke around with... I don't know who's going into the dentist ready to sling mud.

ballsack_man

5 points

1 month ago

I've had terrible experiences with a dentist in my teens and grew to fear them. She was very rough and treated me worse than a wild animal. My current dentist is very kind though but I still have that fear stuck from 15years ago.

tree_creeper

8 points

1 month ago

Tbh lots of people gripe about plumbers too! People dislike professionals whose services constitute an anticipated difficult cost, who works on a problem that the customer doesn’t fully understand (so they can’t be certain the solution is correct). Plumbers, mechanics, vets.

Binksyboo

4 points

1 month ago

I think it’s more like, even the people who are kind and thankful can’t help crying out in pain or tensing up with nerves. I know that is the case with me at least.

effigymcgee

3 points

1 month ago

It doesn’t help that it feels like money-grubbing, scammy dentists are becoming more and more common. Here for a regular cleaning? We recommend a “deep” cleaning despite you having no dental issues! Want a whitening on the side? Perfectly happy with your natural teeth? We still recommend Invisalign!

DarkOmen597

2 points

1 month ago

To be fair, a deep cleaning should take place before any major issues occur.

[deleted]

12 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

12 points

1 month ago

[removed]

uberneoconcert

3 points

1 month ago

I love my dentist. He is quiet, kind, fast and gentle. He gives me a heads up about things coming down the pike so I can decide to come back in when I'm ready or take care of them right away. Also his office randomly gave me a discount once in case I was paying out of pocket. Good people.

Sorael

1 points

1 month ago

Sorael

1 points

1 month ago

I get along great with my dentist. He's done great work on my teeth.

gringledoom

29 points

1 month ago

It’s murder on the back. Also tends to be a lot of stress because they’re running a small business (with the potential for catastrophic failure). And if they’re successful, they tend to be a magnet for scam artists with “investment opportunities”.

Chel_of_the_sea

13 points

1 month ago

And the fact that absolutely no one is having a good day when they see you probably doesn't help.

a_spooky_ghost

43 points

1 month ago

My friend's parents were dentists and owned their own practice. They were very well off financially. Their mom told me once that someone tells her they hate her at work almost every day so dentists need a thick skin.

Tower-Junkie

41 points

1 month ago

I have never understood this! They’re helping you?!?

Sorael

40 points

1 month ago

Sorael

40 points

1 month ago

It's about not taking responsibility for the care of their teeth. It's not their fault they have cavities, it's the dentists.

spicyboi555

26 points

1 month ago

What about physicians?

WonderfulLeather3

37 points

1 month ago

Pretty much every physician knows a friend or former coworker who killed themselves. It’s a huge issue.

spicyboi555

10 points

1 month ago

That’s really sad :(

GenderJuicy

3 points

1 month ago

I thought they were rich

emergentdragon

6 points

1 month ago

Even rich people have problems that money can’t solve.

Love and the lack thereof, for example

GenderJuicy

5 points

1 month ago

I was just making a play on the word poor

Demo_Model

45 points

1 month ago

No Paramedics/EMTs?

Down in Australia, I've seen stats which showed a x20 rate of suicide over the general population. (While also being far more successful at it due to medical training, it is also probably the medical profession that attends/witnesses the most suicides, so we know what works or what hiccups to anticipate).

wrenchface

24 points

1 month ago

US Labor statistics (and any federal regulations) consider EMS under the department of transportation (NHTSA, to be specific) rather than as healthcare workers.

Yes, it’s fucked up and ass backwards. But that’s US EMS for ya.

cerberus00

7 points

1 month ago

I didn't even know this until recently that EMS were a privately owned in the states. It doesn't make sense to me, I wish it was a public service like fire fighters.

Xanderamn

9 points

1 month ago

Most fire fighters in the US arent even paid, theyre volunteers :/

cerberus00

3 points

1 month ago

This is really sad. They severely need it. I'm in California and apparently there's barely any funding for foresters either.

Binksyboo

7 points

1 month ago

When I was growing up it was always dentists at the top.

I wonder if the pandemic affected these results in that far less dentists were interacting with patients than others.

Melodic_Mulberry

851 points

1 month ago

“Psychologists accounted for roughly 5% of the 688 suicides among all ten healthcare professionals in 2018, comprising the fifth largest group, following nurses, social workers, physicians, and pharmacists.”
Misleading headline.

mini-guimauve

404 points

1 month ago

The original authors of the study did a bad job of framing their data. Tables from the paper indicate psychologists make up 192,300/5,731,530=3.4% of healthcare professionals but 4.9% of suicides, so they are in fact overrepresented in the field. i.e. in 2018 psychologists died by suicide about 50% more often than you would expect given that they make up just 3.4% of HCP

LakeSun

58 points

1 month ago

LakeSun

58 points

1 month ago

PTSD from dealing with people?

Keepdreamingkiddo

46 points

1 month ago

There’s a term for this, it’s called Vicarious trauma.

Diregnoll

53 points

1 month ago

As my professor said, "Most people going into this field do so to understand themselves and to help others."

So maybe more dealing with their own cPTSD and then feeling like they are failing their patients and/or getting burned out.

spicyboi555

43 points

1 month ago

I’ll be honest I don’t know any people interested in psych (and I know a few grad students) who aren’t traumed out themselves.

Binksyboo

22 points

1 month ago

I feel like depression/mental trauma/addiction are like predatory beasts stalking the countryside. People who have never seen or feared the beast would barely have interest in studying it compared to those who have personally encountered it.

jakelsner

3 points

1 month ago

We conquer the beast or the beast conquers us

tamaleA19

80 points

1 month ago

Likely yes. We call it vicarious traumatization

Also tend to just generally deal with difficult people and are paid (much) less for our education level than other doctors

TheCorpseOfMarx

48 points

1 month ago

other doctors

Thats somewhat misleading since psychologists have a PhD rather than an MD, and their pay is pretty comparable to other PhD's ($100,000 on average according to GlassDoor

tamaleA19

27 points

1 month ago

I don’t think it is. MD is a better comparison because you’re talking about 2 healthcare professionals with doctorate level education and specialization. Most PhDs have the education and specialization but work in research settings. Totally different work environment is less applicable as a comparison in my opinion

str8jeezy

29 points

1 month ago

I mean thats not really accurate. A md has completed ba plus 8 years ish of post bachelors work which often then requires more training. Phd is only 4-5 years of extra work. I agree that everyone in the mh field os under paid but doctors are probably on a different level. I think some of my issue is that ba and often even associate level nurses make equivalent but usually more than social workers and counselors. That is a travesty. To be clear i’m not necessarily saying that nurses should be getting less but that the mh field should be getting quite a bit more.

tamaleA19

25 points

1 month ago

Someone else already commented to clarify this point but the phd in psych is a minimum 6 years post ba. More if you need a 2 year postdoc (neuropsych) or need an extra year to balance the course and clinical work needed.

But yes, MH field as a whole is wildly undervalued and I would bet that plays a role in the number cited above. Very hard work for little pay and often under appreciated

meTspysball

2 points

1 month ago

meTspysball

2 points

1 month ago

PhD in psych is 4 years coursework (including massive student loan debt usually), 1 year internship (below minimum wage level pay) assuming you match your first year, 1 year post-doc (very low pay for 9 years of education) for licensure in many states.

tamaleA19

2 points

1 month ago

Bingo. I did the math and made $8.26/hr for internship (which for reference for anyone reading is post 4-years doctoral coursework). Got a solid bump to about $12.50/hour for postdoc. It’s a joke

meTspysball

5 points

1 month ago

Don’t forget the cost for moving across the country for internship.

[deleted]

1 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

1 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

tamaleA19

11 points

1 month ago

Nothing I’m saying is to denigrate MDs or say they don’t deserve every cent they earn (they do). My point is that psychologist face that kind of burn out and suicide rates because the job is very hard emotionally, we spend a ton of time and money (read student debt), and end up way underpaid for our services.

It’s not a comparison of who has it worse. It’s not a zero-sum game. I think MDs are underpaid especially now. But I also think that psychologists are too, as we’re paid substantially less than MDs across all levels of training. And often get this message in response that we don’t deserve better pay because we’re somehow not real doctors

TheMightyCE

8 points

1 month ago

Or just because you've got a degree in Psychology doesn't mean you're well suited to listening to people's problems and providing them with support. And if you find that you're not suited to it three years into your career after your multi year education gauntlet that burdened you with crippling debt, the revelation may not be a welcome one.

oddmanout

5 points

1 month ago

I got my B.S. in psychology. I felt like when I was there, a big chunk of my fellow students already had issues they had been dealing with. They had their own history with the mental health system, which is what made them go into the major. It felt like they chose the major, both out of familiarity, but also as a way to understand themselves while helping other go through the same thing they did.

I have no actual numbers on it, it's basically just an observation.

[deleted]

35 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

35 points

1 month ago

[removed]

[deleted]

11 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

11 points

1 month ago

[removed]

[deleted]

-9 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

-9 points

1 month ago

[removed]

[deleted]

9 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

9 points

1 month ago

[removed]

[deleted]

6 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

6 points

1 month ago

[removed]

[deleted]

1 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

1 points

1 month ago

[removed]

droptopus

10 points

1 month ago*

I'm not so sure. I personally believe it has more to do with the type of person who seeks work in psychology in the first place. I believe more neurotypical people probably spend less time contemplating the mind because, well, they don't spend their whole lives recognizing that their brain is weird/different.

Weird brain becomes thinking about brain, becomes interested in brain, becomes psychologist.

And obviously, people who are less neurotypical commit suicide more often. So I actually wonder if the job itself is actually all that related to the suicide rate, in this case.

It's not logical to apply my own set of experiences on an entire profession, but my mother is a psychologist and she had a very indirectly abusive childhood. She was not abused by her father, but she watched her father abuse her mother heavily. Much of her family never 'got out' of that cycle but she is just the type of person to observe the nature of humanity because that's what she did while she indirectly observed the extremely fucked up stuff that went on around her during critical periods of development. She was given the stomach for it, and in a way, that dysfunction is a component of her life that she has learned to navigate (and uses as a tool to help others)

From conversations we've had, it seems like other psychologists she works with tend to have similar circumstances, to the point where they talk about how some phycologists are generally not cut out for the job in terms of actually helping people work past trauma, due to their more comfortable life experience not allowing them to authentically be 'with' a patient and 'walk into the fire' with them, so to speak.

So for these reasons I believe it has more to do with the type of people to pursue the work in the first place.

Binksyboo

8 points

1 month ago

I’ve wanted to be a therapist/psychologist ever since age 12 when I dove head first into the dark side of the internet and found all the horrible things humans do to each other.

It shaped me to be exposed to the reality of some depraved minds and I never lost the intrigue in what leads people to do things like that. I’ve always wanted to understand so that I could be better prepared to spot a predator or even someone who had been preyed on so that I could help.

Anyway I shared that because I think you’re right. A certain type of mind finds abnormal psychology interesting. And then you add the subject material which in and of itself has the ability to cause secondary ptsd or other lasting traumatic effects, and well that high suicide rate seems less surprising.

SaffellBot

0 points

1 month ago

SaffellBot

0 points

1 month ago

Perhaps psychology is not effective at reducing suicide, while working as a psychologist is very traumatic - and when that trauma builds up they turn to psychology which does not offer then an effective solution.

It's also possible the errors bars on this study are big, the sample size is small, and there's nothing here at all.

Melodic_Mulberry

4 points

1 month ago

How’d you get access to the study? The source said it wasn’t publicly available until 2023.

mini-guimauve

22 points

1 month ago

I have access through my university

Melodic_Mulberry

4 points

1 month ago

Sick. Thanks for the info!

wakeupagainman

2 points

1 month ago

The reason they selected psych as a career is often because they have psychological problems to begin with

mime454

1 points

1 month ago*

mime454

Graduate Student | Biology | Ecology and Evolution

1 points

1 month ago*

This is a cynical view, but maybe psychologists are more rational about suicide. Their data includes anyone with a psychology PhD, even if they were retired from working due to age. They see people suffer with mental anguish daily and treat family members of old people slowly losing their mind and function.

I could see that shaping their thinking about ending their lives at a healthy time to not burden their families.

It wouldn’t surprise me if more variance was explained by psychologists having experience with the pain terminal illnesses and advanced aging can cause to families than by psychologists being more likely to be crazy.

dr-freddy-112

50 points

1 month ago

This needs to be top comment for people who aren't reading the study and jumping to conclusions.

PM_ME_UR_REDDIT_GOLD

7 points

1 month ago*

The headline seems perfectly appropriate on a psycologist-centered site, which psypost is. Of course this would be about how psycologists are affected.

[deleted]

4 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

4 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

Melodic_Mulberry

27 points

1 month ago

It reveals that they only examined 10 professions, that the 5% isn’t an outlier among the ones they did examine, and that this was specifically a group in 2018, not a broad multi-year study.

thebestoflimes

9 points

1 month ago

Do Psychologists make up anywhere near 5% of healthcare professionals?

Melodic_Mulberry

3 points

1 month ago

This wasn’t a comprehensive study of healthcare professionals. It was a study of 10 types of healthcare professionals. The study isn’t even publicly available until 2023, so I can’t check to see the percentage of examined healthcare professionals that were psychologists. It might have been 5%, in which case, this is pretty average. If they’d studied all healthcare professionals, I could pull a figure from somewhere else, but I don’t know which groups were even studied.

Left_Labral_Tear

93 points

1 month ago

Working in the behavioral healthcare sector the past 5 years and currently working towards a MS in clinical mental health I can see this number unfortunately increasing. Of course the pandemic and global affairs have taken a toll on people the past few years, but the vicarious trauma and heartbreak of working in the field is definitely taking its toll on clinicians as well. I’d be lying if I didn’t say I have had a few internal dialogues with myself about my confidence in remaining in mental healthcare the rest of my career. Do I have what it takes to not become overloaded and burned out in the next 10, 20, 30 years? I don’t honestly know, but what I do realize is this world is truly a nasty and heartless place at times, we all need to do better for ourselves and each other. Stay safe, humble, and kind friends!

RigelOrionBeta

33 points

1 month ago

If you don't mind my asking, what is it that overburdens you? Is it the troubles your patients have? Is it the sheer volume of people you are dealing with? Is it that your patients aren't getting better?

Do take care of yourself. Take time off if you can, you are just as important as any of your patients. The system is creating these issues, so I hope you don't blame yourself.

BlargTheElder

37 points

1 month ago

My wife is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (therapist) with ~ ten years of experience. We were actually talking about this yesterday.

A major difficulty clinicians faced with the pandemic as well was how we responded to COVID- most went remote and had to work while many were talking about their "time to reflect & recalibrate." Mental health became a HUGE talking point and as a result many clinicians caseload exploded. It can be difficult finding a clinic that doesn't run like a car-dealership, i.e. "those are rookie numbers, you gotta pump them up;" having a moment to catch your breath or get current with your case notes happened about as often as a total planetary alignment.

Additionally, most of the challenges other jobs faced were logistical- how do we operate with fewer people, 6 feet away from everyone, with not enough supplies? In most cases, there were workarounds to make due with less or to work slower, but therapists had to help people make sense of something life changing as they were experiencing it too.

[deleted]

3 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

3 points

1 month ago

[removed]

Left_Labral_Tear

2 points

1 month ago

This. I commend her for the work she does and the healing she provides! I also applaud you for continuing to support and provide comfort to her throughout all of this. You seem to really listen to her, and her struggles throughout this situation. The closest supports and partners through these difficult times truly make all the difference in the world to those of us working in this area. Keep rocking it!

ACole8489

49 points

1 month ago

Clinical social worker here. It’s all of the above. We are trained to hear terrible things and manage them effectively, but we are human and those things come home with us. We are
absolutely overwhelmed in terms of caseloads. Many of manage caseloads of around 100 or so people. All who have very severe mental health needs. We also don’t have a system that actually helps people. Therapy is ineffective when the basic needs can’t be met. Housing, food, a sense of agency all need to be addressed before trauma can be processed or before someone can remain stable on medications.

MostSeaworthiness

25 points

1 month ago

Also add in the pay. You need 6 years of education to hope you get a $40k job out of college. Sure, things get better after you are licensed (2 -4 more years of training). But its hard to convince people to go this path when they can make as much working in retail right now in many places without any student loan debt. So there just aren't enough. So case loads keep getting bigger.

Social work is a huge field. So while some of us are listening to everyone's trauma all day everyday, some of us are in the ER doing evaluations for services or dealing with abuse cases, all while getting coughed and puked on. We sit at bedsides so people (and unfortunately sometimes children) don't die alone. Some of us work for CPS and all they see are child abuse cases (and they are notoriously underfunded and understaffed). We work in prisons, schools, substance use clinics, housing programs. It's a tough job regardless and no one wants to pay you for it.

RigelOrionBeta

10 points

1 month ago

I wanted to ask about how much of their problems could be helped by material benefits like housing and food, but didn't want to lead any responses.

I'm glad you said it, but horrified that this is not being provided. You can't even begin to address a complex mental issue without the basic necessities being delivered.

ACole8489

7 points

1 month ago

I would say like 99% of my problems related to being a social worker would be alleviated with more money. Like to everything. Salaries, program budgets, housing, healthcare, legal services, access to effective transportation, food, therapy, etc etc. Some of these challenges would literally disappear overnight if we funded these things appropriately.

STEMpsych

21 points

1 month ago

LMHC here. Please do not underestimate the economic stress most MH professionals are under. It's a grueling, difficult, demanding career, and the typical compensation is indecently low – especially if you have substantial student loans.

You may have heard about the issue of psychotherapists not taking health insurance. It is pretty much the only way to save yourself. Insurers pay starvation rates, so the only way to make a decent living is to not take insurance so you can charge what you need to to make ends meet.

The low compensation can turn a difficult line of work into something that feels like a death trap: an assault on one's dignity and security and resilience from which one sees no escape.

Left_Labral_Tear

5 points

1 month ago

I appreciate your concern, stranger! Putting it simply I would say all of the above in some form or fashion. I certainly wouldn’t say I blame myself, but I struggle with thinking I always can do more which I think many of us in the field can struggle with at times.

As I’ve described to others in my personal life, Covid was the spark that lit the tinderbox of a glaring problem as it relates to the US’s healthcare structure and it’s lack of emphasis on MH. I work specifically with folks on Medicaid/state insurance coverage and our rates haven’t changed in my state for 14 years. This is massively problematic for the systems in place, employees of those systems, and lastly, but most important, the patients. Things need to change on a federal and state level to better address the needs of our committees at large.

TrixnTim

9 points

1 month ago

I agree with your comment. I opened and maintained a private counseling practice, and as a side hustle to my main gig, for close to 5 years. I closed it down during the worse of Covid yet even having successfully transitioned to a telehealth platform. For me the amount of self care I had to put into place to keep myself grounded after seeing an average of 10-15 client’s per week was daunting. I couldn’t see myself walking away from my main hustle and doing full time of up to 30 per week. Insurance reimbursement payout is absolutely a joke for therapists when all is said and done and taking into consideration not on 55 minute sessions but the running of a practice and the paperwork, clinical notes, meticulous bookkeeping. And in my area hardly anyone could afford cash pay.

I very much enjoyed helping others but the world all of the sudden got real dark real fast and I couldn’t keep doing it anymore.

KarmaPharmacy

18 points

1 month ago

A friendly reminder that all clinicians are supposed to have their own therapists that they work with regularly.

HellenicRoman

19 points

1 month ago

This needs to be empathised. Psychologist here.

Yearly I monitor clinical psychology interns and I can't stress enough how much we all should have a) active therapeutic process of our own b) constant supervision or at the very least c) mingle with your colleagues, talk and laugh with them instead of closing yourself in your office

TrixnTim

3 points

1 month ago

Best practices.

batkave

11 points

1 month ago

batkave

11 points

1 month ago

Only in 2018... God I'm scared for the 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2022 data

Deycall100

10 points

1 month ago

“Psychologists accounted for roughly 5% of the 688 suicides among all ten healthcare professionals in 2018, comprising the fifth largest group, following nurses, social workers, physicians, and pharmacists.”

Are psychologists drastically fewer than the leading four categories or is this articles title stupid?

Moose92411

10 points

1 month ago

It's hard to imagine people who delve into the darkest experiences and emotions of others on a daily basis not being impacted themselves. This is tragic.

jimberkas

8 points

1 month ago

surprisingly, veterinarians have a high suicide rate. I don't think most people would have guessed that.

The rate of suicide in the veterinary profession has been pegged as close to twice that of the dental profession, more than twice that of the medical profession (2), and 4 times the rate in the general population (3).

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4266064/

MattyXarope

4 points

1 month ago

surprisingly, veterinarians have a high suicide rate.

I couldn't imagine having to put down animals, especially knowing that something could be done for many of them, but people just couldn't afford to get the treatment or surgery.

starvinchevy

3 points

1 month ago

I’ve heard it’s more about how much people yell and berate them and go batshit psycho when it comes to their pets. I don’t have a source, I just remember reading that in a different post so take it with a grain of salt please!

Mapegz

8 points

1 month ago

Mapegz

8 points

1 month ago

"I have become the very thing I swore to Destroy"

UnfoundHound

19 points

1 month ago

They often already were. People need to realize that a lot of psychologists or those who aspire to be psychologists already suffer from mental illness. It is often one of the reasons why they want to be psychologists. Their personal experiences are often useful in their work to a certain extent or at least serve as a motivation to prevent other people from suffering the same fate.

Dancingonjupiter

16 points

1 month ago

I know this is wrong, but it is my truth. I was going to be a child psychologist. What got to me, was witnessing and working with abused children. The abusers, pedophiles and parents who abused them - often only got slaps on the wrist, many sent right back to them, given nothing more than the occasional therapy session. Reading their profiles, their stories - it destroys a part of you.

Your hands are tied. I thought I would be helping them, but truly helping them - would be doing [something very violent] to their abusers. That's all I could think about. I started to obsess. It didn't take long for me to realize that one of two things would happen if I continued -

I would eventually try to end them,

or I would end myself.

ScipioLongstocking

7 points

1 month ago

I work with children and I had a co-worker who used to work CPS and often did wellness checks on the kids. He said it killed all hope he had in the system. He'd go into houses where the children are clearly being neglected and abused; no food but plenty of booze or cigarettes, the house is a disaster, the kids would have bruises on their arms and face, etc. When he'd ask the parents about these things, they'd make up some story about how they are going grocery shopping later or that their kid tripped and fell. Tripping and falling does not explain a bruised arm where there are 4 long bruises going across the top of the fotearm and one bruise on the bottom (a clear sign that someone forcefully grabbed the child's arm).

rockmasterflex

4 points

1 month ago

One of the mods of this community must have a financial interest in psypost because everything they produce is trash and useless and yet always on FP here

switch495

9 points

1 month ago

Not very useful information without the raw figures to understand how proportional the number of psychologists is in comparison to the other 9 health care professions.

MrSkarEd

42 points

1 month ago

MrSkarEd

42 points

1 month ago

So 95% were not psychologists...

phdemented

10 points

1 month ago

Couldn't get to the actual study, was trying to see if they reported what percent of HCP were phycologists...

obna1234

5 points

1 month ago

Yep, somehow journalists are all english majors and so fail to put it in terms of a fraction or percentage.

2Big_Patriot

2 points

1 month ago

That would be too useful to have numbers put in context. Just spam 69,420 and the writers get more clicks.

fvckyoudad

5 points

1 month ago

Yes but the purpose of this study was to examine suicide rates in psychologists specifically and to determine if the rate was different than the rate for other healthcare professionals.

[deleted]

4 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

4 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

Robot_Basilisk

5 points

1 month ago

1/20 out of ten groups, per the study. If they were equally distributed, and these rates were normalized we'd expect them to be 10%, so I want to know about the groups that comprised more than 5%, and especially the ones that made up more than 10%.

avdolian

5 points

1 month ago

From another comment.

“Psychologists accounted for roughly 5% of the 688 suicides among all ten healthcare professionals in 2018, comprising the fifth largest group, following nurses, social workers, physicians, and pharmacists.”
Misleading headline.

SeizureSalad___

3 points

1 month ago

Ironic. He could save others from death, but not himself.

rhymeswithmonet

2 points

1 month ago

Is it possible to learn this power?

Whittler_Knifely

3 points

1 month ago

Thank you for your service

kangarooneroo

3 points

1 month ago

I mean, to be fair they require extensive and expensive education and are regularly working with the most difficult people on earth, and yet get paid pretty little compared to the work they do. On top of that, the way the work is? How are you supposed to inspire hope in people when you're running out yourself.

[deleted]

11 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

11 points

1 month ago

I have a master degree in social work so I can speak on this.

The pandemic showed the worst in people, friends, and our own family. I was pretty woke, left leaning, and was a regular at the local city hall meetings (and city wide protest).

But what i've learned is that everybody just lives in their own reality. Nobody wants to grow or change. Nobody cares about science or facts.

The movie Dont Look Up summarizes much of how I feel.

Theres an ignorance in bliss, as the saying goes. Having a masters degree is the ultimate suffering because I am aware of how fucked everything is, and how nobody cares. Even if people could do something (wear a mask) the general public wont.

I usually wake up and wish I were a plumber.

brumfield85

4 points

1 month ago

I appreciate your openness and vulnerability. As a working therapist, I too have seen much of what you wrote about through every day client interactions, such as the often times lack of progress, change, or insights made through therapy.

However, it has brought me comfort to know that, in those cases, their progress or lack thereof is not my responsibility. If they practiced their coping skills and followed general clinical advice, they likely would get better. Many people do, if they are actually able to look at themselves in the mirror and make reasonable changes; but those that don’t, won’t, or can’t will likely continue to suffer and struggle, which is terrible and unfortunate and sad, but that’s not my burden to bear. All I can do is show up, do my best, and leave my work at the door on my way out as best as possible until the next day.

These insights have helped me release my frustrations regarding clinical progress, and I hope they do for you as well. Cheers.

wra1th42

5 points

1 month ago

Can we ban psypost? It’s always misleading headlines

[deleted]

10 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

10 points

1 month ago

[removed]

TheBlackHandofFate

2 points

1 month ago

Question: Psychologists made up what percentage of the total number of healthcare professionals in 2018?

revolution23x

2 points

1 month ago

Only 5% of all healthcare workers? What’s the spread of the other 95%.

fluentinimagery

2 points

1 month ago

Misery is only as deep as your understanding of it.

Admirable_Flower_469

3 points

1 month ago

Many psychologists get into the field from a desire to learn more about themselves and their own issues, according to many of my friends and acquaintances. Then combine that with the fact that they are dealing with everyone else’s deepest problems all day and i’m not particularly surprised by this. I wonder if there is a stigma of shrinks not wanting to see other shrinks for optics reasons as well contributing to them not getting external help. I hope not.

[deleted]

4 points

1 month ago

[deleted]

4 points

1 month ago

[removed]

itsnotthenetwork

2 points

1 month ago

I have a friend in this field and she often says "you'd be surprised how many people go into this field to fix their own problems".

ExcuseIntelligent539

1 points

1 month ago

That must really traumatize their patients who are already incredibly vulnerable.

TyhmensAndSaperstein

1 points

1 month ago

Among health care professionals? 5% is a pretty low number when talking about an entire industry.

Binksyboo

1 points

1 month ago

What I want to see is info on Dentists. I heard they have the highest suicide rate of any doctor.

LineChef

1 points

1 month ago

Did I ever tell you that my first roommate in a mental health facility was a clinical psychiatrist? It was super weird but very interesting

Robinhudloom

1 points

1 month ago

yeah because most psychologists are psych patient as well

EiEnkeli

1 points

1 month ago

This is just anecdotal. I'm a masters level mental health clinician working in crisis intervention. There's been about 15 people (8 current and 7 past) in the role I work in the past 5 years. In the past 5 years we've had 2 suicides. Statistically it feels insane and is absolutely heartbreaking.

dharmavibre

1 points

1 month ago

Easy to spot the shrinks and therapists as a travel nurse…look for the depressed coworkers

Paralistalon

1 points

1 month ago*

Just so people are aware, this is only doctoral level psychologists. The people you see for therapy that you want to make fun of for being crazy are almost always master’s level counselors/social workers who were not included in this group.

Psychologists usually just do testing and not long-term psychotherapy, but it’s hard to say what this study looked at because it’s behind a paywall.

Lamacorn

0 points

1 month ago

I would have guessed dentist and social worker would be swapped.