13 Pros and Cons of Being a Health Psychologist

Last Updated: June 10, 2024

Health psychology is a newly emerging field of study in the health and wellness industry. It is the study of how people approach health psychologically. Health psychologists use techniques that encourage people to make healthier choices through psychological manipulation.

If you are inteted in studying health psychology as a career, you should first learn more about it to ensure that you’re fit for this career path. There are things that you need to take into consideration when deciding if this is the right career path for you to take.

If you would like to learn more about the pros and cons of being a health psychologist, please continue reading.

What are the Pros of Being a Health Psychologist?

Pro No. 1 – Health psychology is a relatively new career option and field of study

A health psychologist is a relatively new job title in the psychology and health career fields, so it makes sense why it’s such a tempting option to choose from. It is exciting to enter a newly named area of study because of all the opportunities one would have to make new discoveries.

If you’re a curious person who loves learning new things, being a health psychologist might be a good option.

Pro No. 2 – The demand for jobs as a health psychologists is high

Due to health psychology being a new and emerging job title, the demand for it is going to be higher. Because of how new this job title is, there are not going to be many experts in this area of study. That means that if you begin to learn about it now, you can quickly work your way up to becoming an expert advisor.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, between 2020 and 2030, the job position as a health psychologist is estimated to have a growth rate of about 8%.

Pro No. 3 – You have the opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives as a health psychologist

Health psychologists harness the power of psychology as a science in order to help people live healthier lives. They educate and assist people with blockages in taking care of their health and make a genuine difference by doing so.

Pro No. 4 – You can earn a decent salary as a health psychologist

Those who follow the career path as a health psychologist have the potential to make a decent salary. Because it takes such extensive training and knowledge to become a health psychologist, making a decent amount of money for all their hard work, training, and studying would make sense.

In the US, a health psychologist can earn anywhere between $68,818 and $92,142, with the average salary being approximately $81,195.

Pro No. 5 – There are many different settings you can work in with various organizations as a health psychologist

There are several different settings you can work in as a health psychologist. Whether it be in private practice, a hospital, or another type of medical clinic, health psychologists often run programs that promote the healing and wellness of others.

Prime examples of what type of programs health psychologists often work in are rehabilitation and help with quitting smoking.

Pro No. 6 – Health psychologists have the opportunity to participate in and help conduct tons of necessary research

There will likewise generally be a requirement for research led by health psychologists. Containing health care costs is essential for health care leaders and strategy creators, which is an area of examination where health psychologists can contribute in significant ways.

They might concentrate on the reasons for health issues and how to prevent them or investigate why certain groups of people don’t look for care when they need it.

They may also help patients comprehend and find some peace with motivation or follow a treatment routine to build the likelihood of their complete healing.

Pro No. 7 – As a health psychologist, you get the satisfaction of genuinely being a help to others

Having the ability to help people in life truly is one of the most significant rewards you can get out of your career. This is especially so in the health psychology career field.

Health psychologists help people heal themselves and make the best possible health-related choices for them to follow. This has a massive impact on the way that person will live and can even help improve their quality of life.

If you choose to become a health psychologist, you will have plenty of opportunities to help people and feel the rewarding accomplishment of doing so.

Pro No. 8 – You’ll know how to make healthy life choices for yourself as a health psychologist

Not only will you be able to help others make healthy choices as a health psychologist, but you will also be able to help yourself make good health choices. If you choose this as a career, you will know everything there is to know about being able to make the best health choices possible for yourself.

Pro No. 9 – Health psychologists help ensure healthcare systems are safe and effective

Health psychologists take part in preventing illness and injury in the medical field. They come up with strategies and teach techniques to other healthcare professionals and patients.

Another duty a person working as a health psychologist will carry out is making hospitals and other health care centers safer and more effective. This ensures each patient has a good experience and receives the best healthcare possible, which could be life-saving.

What are the Cons of Being a Health Psychologist?

Con No. 1 – Getting the doctorate degree needed to become a health psychologist can take a long time

To become a health psychologist, you will need to go to university and get your doctorate degree. Getting your psychology doctorate degree can take quite some time. It can take anywhere between four to six years to earn a doctorate degree successfully.

So, prepare to spend a lot of time in school studying if you plan on pursuing a career as a health psychologist.

Con No. 2 – Licenses aren’t always transferable between states for health psychologists

Once you get a license to be a health psychologist in one state, you can’t always expect it to be valid in another. So, as long as you plan on never moving out of state, it is crucial to keep in mind that in order to work in a new state, you may need to obtain or renew your license.

Depending on the state, it could quickly become a huge pain getting a license fit for that state’s laws and regulations of practicing there.

Con No. 3 – Schooling to become a health psychologist is not cheap

Another con of becoming a health psychologist is the hefty price you may have to pay for the education and training needed to become one legally. The average tuition for a doctorate degree program in this field of study is approximately $132,200.

That means the annual tuition to become a health psychologist could be anywhere between $22,000 and $33,000.

Con No. 4 – The field of health psychology has its limitations

Health psychology research is an expansive field, and various speculations inside the profession have different advantages and limits.

The HBM has been condemned for disregarding profound variables that can play into decision-making about health-related ways of behaving.

Also, it is crucial to consider that no single sort of treatment is appropriate for everybody, and health psychology can be pretty restricted and have limitations. For example, individuals who are not managing any health issues may not find health psychology accommodating or effective.

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