We are living in a generation of apps and the Internet, something our ancestors would never understand since they’re not here (and they would probably freak out if they were). New jobs and new trends are crowding our screens with ads and options to choose, and that can either be a good or a bad thing, depending on each case.
In this article, we will discuss online therapy, a revolutionary method to reach a broader audience in the comfort of their own homes and change more lives for the better.
We will look at the full picture, taking into consideration what experts have detected as the pros and cons of online therapy.
The Benefits of Online Therapy
Online therapy has become an interesting choice to break many different barriers. Thus, it has a more extended reach, and it may be useful to you if you want to maintain anonymity.
In short, these are the most important benefits of seeking therapy online:
- Online therapy is anonymous: One of the benefits the anonymity of the Internet offers is that it might help some people feel they can be more honest and open with their therapist. Also, since nobody has to know, there is no social stigma attached to receiving this kind of therapy.
- It is more accessible: If you’re a busy person, trying to fit therapy into your schedule might become difficult sometimes. Alternatively, if you have difficulty leaving your home due to a chronic physical or mental illness, web counseling can help bridge the gap between those barriers and the services you need.
- It is an interesting approach for young adults and teens: The Internet is exciting for young people, and teens might be more interested in online therapy when it involves using the Internet and various technologies.
- Web counseling is cheap: In most cases, online therapy is a good approach if your budget is low and you have no health insurance. It reduces various costs such as renting a private practice, mobilization, administration personnel, etc. This makes it more economical for both parties.
The Downsides of Online Therapy
As with most Internet options, things are not perfect, and online therapy has various disadvantages that are important to take into consideration before trying this approach.
- Security issues: Your therapist may be in full compliance with HIPPA laws, but digital systems can be tampered with. If you’re an influential person, and you do not want anyone to find out about your sessions, you might want to consider confidentiality as a potential issue in this type of therapy.
- Technical glitches: If you’re about to start an online session, you need to know that there might be technical issues. The Internet not connecting, software not working correctly, and other technical difficulties can sometimes become an additional source of distress.
- A limited range of communication: In traditional counseling, what the patient says is essential, but their nonverbal cues provide useful information, as well. Even if you are talking with your therapist via video chat, he or she may need some extra time to diagnose and treat you because there are mannerisms that can be more easily hidden when talking via computer or phone screen.
To recap, online therapy could be a wonderful tool to help those who have no health insurance and/or have difficulty leaving their homes get the support they need.
It makes counseling more appealing and accessible, it is cheaper because it reduces many different costs, and it is anonymous for those who are worried about social stigma.
However, there are some technical downsides to consider, especially if you become anxious around technical glitches, and if you’re worried your connection might be tampered with.
In every case, if you’re about to start online therapy, here’s the most critical advice for you: This is your moment to be heard. You deserve to be completely open with someone and not feel sorry or ashamed about doing so. Online therapy can help you take these steps, so you can enjoy a better quality of life.