Online therapy has risen in popularity due to COVID-19 precautions, as well as generally due to the ease of convenience the program provides, as opposed to scheduling an in-person session. While some may doubt the effectiveness of online therapy, its benefits are numerous. Many professional online therapy websites will have mental health professionals on standby for any of your concerns.
Furthermore, online therapy can help provide you with tips on what you can do now to improve your mental health. Therapists can talk you through big life changes and small life tweaks, even like how to change your sleeping schedule in a positive way.
If you are looking to try some advice from therapists that could apply to your life or thinking about looking into online therapy, many online resources can help.
Before you try online therapy, consider the three factors below.
1. Engagement With an Online Therapist
Unlike an in-person therapy session, in which you meet with your counselor once every week for a set period of time, an online therapist may have more availability. Some online therapy websites may even have a messaging service in which your therapist could communicate with you more often in a way that feels more casual or spur of the moment.
Since certain online therapy websites will automatically pair you with a therapist, if they do not fit your particular needs, you can opt for another professional. Most websites will be happy to oblige and work hard on finding someone that can best help you.
You may even have more choices when using an online therapy service since your therapist will not necessarily need to be close to you geographically. Talking with someone whose specialty fits your needs even if they are not close by is another advantage of online therapy.
There are many elements of online therapy that are more convenient than scheduling in-person therapy sessions. One example is affordable pricing. Many in-person therapy sessions can easily exceed $100 per meeting on a weekly basis. With online therapy, you may find prices as low as $35.
This possible difference in price can make online therapy more accessible to some people as well as provide a low-cost way to try out therapy for the first time. If the provider you have chosen does not fit your needs, you can always search for other websites with affordable pricing that can best help you.
Additionally, your platform of choice may have various ways of communicating with your therapist. You may have the option of scheduling a real-time chat and video conferencing. Regular sessions can be scheduled with online therapists, similar to how in-person sessions would work. Those who prefer a consistent schedule can do so from the comfort of their own home. Some people feel more comfortable being vulnerable in a familiar place, where they have their own things surrounding them.
3. For Some, Online Therapy Is Not a Substitute for in-person Therapy
Despite the advantages of online therapy over in-person therapy, the former cannot always replace the latter. While following health regulations during the pandemic is vital, online therapy may not work best for everyone during their normal routine.
Some people who experience a certain mental illness that translates better in person may work better with a face-to-face therapy session. Some mental health professionals may not be comfortable making certain diagnoses without seeing a patient in person.
For those who have been working with a certain therapist in the past, consistency and that therapist’s familiarity with the patient may be deemed more important than the convenience of seeing a different therapist online. After all, not every therapist is able to offer online sessions.
While online therapy may not work for everyone, overall, it does make therapy more accessible to a greater number of people. While in-person therapy is necessary for some therapist-patient relationships, the convenience and flexibility offered by online therapy may make vital mental health services available to those who would not be able to access it otherwise, as well as those who simply prefer an online format.