Find Schools

Study Area & Zipcode

Mental Health Counselor

Find Schools Near

What Do Mental Health Counselor Do?

Mental Health Counselor Example 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.

Mental Health Counselor Responsibilities

  • Gather information about community mental health needs or resources that could be used in conjunction with therapy.
  • Act as client advocates to coordinate required services or to resolve emergency problems in crisis situations.
  • Guide clients in the development of skills or strategies for dealing with their problems.
  • Counsel clients or patients, individually or in group sessions, to assist in overcoming dependencies, adjusting to life, or making changes.
  • Assess patients for risk of suicide attempts.
  • Evaluate clients' physical or mental condition, based on review of client information.

Skills Needed to be a Mental Health Counselor

These are the skills Mental Health Counselors say are the most useful in their careers:

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Types of Mental Health Counselor Jobs

  • Clinical Mental Health Counselor
  • Case Manager
  • Grief Counselor
  • Domestic Violence Advocate
  • Behavioral Health Counselor

Are There Job Opportunities for Mental Health Counselors?

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 157,700 jobs in the United States for Mental Health Counselor. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 23.1% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 36,500 new jobs for Mental Health Counselor by 2026. The BLS estimates 21,600 yearly job openings in this field.


The states with the most job growth for Mental Health Counselor are Utah, Arizona, and Virginia. Watch out if you plan on working in Illinois, Kansas, or Maine. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

What Tools & Technology do Mental Health Counselors Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Mental Health Counselors:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Microsoft Access
  • Email software
  • Word processing software
  • Spreadsheet software
  • Database software
  • Microsoft Dynamics
  • Oracle PeopleSoft
  • Scheduling software
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer
  • Statistical software
  • Patient electronic medical record EMR software
  • Netscape Navigator
  • Management information systems MIS
  • Office suite software

How to Become a Mental Health Counselor

What education is needed to be a Mental Health Counselor?


How many years of work experience do I need?


You May Also Be Interested In…

Are you already one of the many Mental Health Counselor in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:


Image Credit: Staff Sgt. Katie Spencer via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

Featured Schools

Find Schools Near You

Our free school finder matches students with accredited colleges across the U.S.