The field of mental health is ever changing. Treatment modalities and medications alone change frequently. As modern science continue its studies of the various mental health issues changes in how we treat these various individuals with these disorders also changes.
As a mental health therapist committed to providing the best therapy and treatments available to individuals it is important that we also change with the times. As such continuing mental health training even after receiving licensure is vital to a person's successful treatment.
Many states require a person to receive a specific number of continuing education hours each year or every few years to maintain the validity of their license. Not all continuing education courses are required to be 'accredited' however; it might behoove you to take only accredited mental health continuing education courses. The course is the same regardless if it is accredited or not the certificate one receives from completing an accredited continuing education course is invaluable.
Yet another reason to take continuing education is to refresh your brain with what you already learned in college. When you were in college you had only one semester to cram as much information into your brain as you could. Consequently, although much of that information entered some of it filtered out or into the deep recesses of your brain. Continuing education courses helps jog your memory bank and bring forth to the surface lessons learned in college.
Additionally, with mental health continuing education you get firsthand knowledge to new treatments that are available as well as experimental drugs and therapies. This gives your patients the opportunity to be involved in the innovative procedures and new drugs before they are released to the general public. Further, with the knowledge gained from your continuing education you are in the running with the competitions within your field and if you have set your sights on another area of employment in your field continuing education will defiantly get you there.
Undoubtedly when you were in college you envisioned the job of your dreams. Have you attained it, or are you still a few steps away from it? Everyone had an idea of the perfect job: nice office, secretary, comfortable waiting room with patients waiting to see you. Well the future is unpredictable as is the economy so ensuring our education is up to date by attending mental health continuing education courses will keep you in the running for new openings in your field of study.
Fresh knowledge is vital to meeting your personal pledge of helping your clients/patients to overcome their mental illness and learn not only coping skills but also ways to manage their disabilities in their own. Granted, not all people are able to stand on their own for long periods of time. Even those who do not have a mental illness need a helping hand occasionally.
This is even truer for those with mental illness. They need professionals like you to give a helping hand, care about how they are feeling yet not care so much that they always need you to lean on for support. With mental health continuing education and the skills you already possess you will be able to encourage your clients/patients to stand on their own when they can but to understand also that you are nearby to offer guidance and emotional support when needed.