As technology improves, so too does our ability to receive treatment for physical and mental health problems. One of the most intriguing advances in recent years is online mental health therapy. Proponents of online therapy say that it can be helpful. Howewver, there are a number of drawbacks.
In this article we’ll let you know all about online therapy and its pros and cons.
What Is Online Mental Health Therapy?
Online mental health therapy involves communicating with a therapist or counselor over the internet. This can be done in a number of different ways.
- The most common way is through video chat. This is the closest that you can get to seeing a therapist face-to-face.
- You can also communicate via email or text messages.
- Some therapists also offer voice calls, though you don’t necessarily need the internet to take advantage of these.
Other than that, therapy will proceed as normal. The only difference is that you won’t be connecting with your therapist in person. There are some advantages to this, but also a number of drawbacks. Many more people are seeking treatment online in order to avoid contacting other human beings. If you think avoiding human contact won’t cause even further damage to your mental health, this may be something to consider.
Pros & Cons of Online Mental Health Therapy
These are some of the advantages and disadvantages of seeking therapy online.
- Online therapy allows you to seek treatment on the go or during a busy life. For example, you can still see your therapist on a vacation or during your lunch break at work.
- Online therapy makes treatment more accessible to people who live in remote areas and don’t have access to therapy.
- In many cases, online therapy is quite a bit cheaper than traditional therapy. Many online venues offer discounts when you pay for multiple sessions.
- Many people report that they don’t feel as comfortable when they connect with a therapist online. You can’t experience the same emotional connection and subtle cues and body language can’t be perceived.
- People without an internet connection or smart phone can’t take advantage of these services.
- Online therapy services are taking away business from some small-town and personal therapy businesses. As these online companies become massive and streamlined, it can be more challenging for local therapists to find clients.
Despite the many cons associated with online therapy, ultimately its efficacy boils down to a matter of personal preference. Research reveals that there’s a nearly identical success rate between online treatment and in-person therapy.
When you consider this, as well as the fact that online therapy provides accessibility to people who would otherwise not be able to receive treatment, it becomes apparent that this is a positive change in the world of mental health.
Online therapy is forever changing the way that people are receiving cognitive behavioral therapy. It bridges the gap between low-income and rural individuals who are in need of treatment.
Cognitive behavioral therapy has been used for more than a century to help people with all sorts of mental ailments ranging from depression to addiction.