A mental health counselor is a trained professional that counsels families, individuals, groups and couples to promote optimal mental health and well-being. Some of the many issues that they help people deal with are marital problems, stress management, substance abuse, addictions, parenting problems, family problems, suicidal ideation, and problems with self-esteem. They help people address aging problems or emotional and mental health issues. Often working with a group, they counsel individuals and their families dealing with drug or alcohol addictions. The counselor helps their clients prevent and rectify conflicts or problems.
A mental health counselor gets his or her information through observations, interviews and tests so they can decide the best course of action to help their client. Some of the other professionals they work closely with when necessary are psychologists, family and marriage workers, psychiatric nurses, school counselors, psychiatrists, and social workers. Many counselors choose to specialize in specific areas or with certain age groups like substance abuse or teenagers.