Music Therapy For Depression It Seems To Work But How The Pros and Cons of Online Therapy

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The Pros and Cons of Online Therapy

Online therapy and mental health treatment provided by a mental health counselor over the Internet has been an effective and convenient option for many years. However, these days in a society constrained by COVID, some adjustments are more of a necessity than an option for both clients and advisors.

As a psychologist with more than 25 years of experience as a “traditional” face-to-face counselor, I was initially skeptical. Can the client and I really communicate properly in cyberspace? How is my ability to decipher body language in a Zoom meeting? Can I provide adequate emotional support behind the screen to a distressed client? As I leaned toward the cons, the obvious pros muttered incredulously in the background.

My first online session didn’t do much to convince me otherwise: problems connecting to the Internet, no sound, and the awkwardness of the new “office” made it a failure. However, after a few sessions, things began to flow. It soon became a comfortable routine and the client was just as “authentic” in the environment. I’ve even had clients who choose face-to-face, set up online, and then continue online. The pros are starting to outweigh the cons, and why?

The Advantage

Confidentiality: Most, if not all, clients place a high value on privacy when receiving mental health treatment. Online therapy offers additional privacy as there is no need to travel to an office where you may see other clients or therapists. This is especially convenient for a client who needs to leave the office, get emotional, and spend time alone.

Time and Logistics: No time (or cost) wasted on shipping, it can be squeezed into your lunch hour at work or after work at the office. The car can even be used as an office from time to time!

Effectiveness: Studies have shown that online therapy is effective in treating mental health problems such as depression, anxiety disorders, and mild to moderate addictions.

Accessibility: Anyone with a reliable Internet connection can participate in online meetings. This means people living in remote locations, with disabilities or dependent children can easily access treatment.

Convenience: Online therapy from the comfort of your home offers you the flexibility to schedule sessions that fit your schedule as opposed to regular office hours.

Location: No location! You can choose your favorite therapist regardless of your country of residence. Having worked in several different countries over the years, I am blessed to be able to provide continuous therapy to clients all over the world.

countries and time zones.

The Disadvantages

Confidentiality. Privacy is a central concern of psychotherapy, but online counseling is particularly opposed to the therapist sending information and exercises to clients and providing them confidentially. This is a matter that needs to be resolved between the client and the practitioner.

Insurance. Some, but not all, insurance companies accept online treatment. However, in these corona times, insurance companies have had to adjust their requirements. However, checking with your insurance company can give you peace of mind.

Not during treatment. People with severe anxiety, suicidal tendencies, and severe mental illness require immediate treatment and face-to-face care, and e-therapy may not provide adequate care in these cases. However, if you are already receiving online treatment, your counselor can help direct you to the appropriate institutions.

COVID. Finally, online treatment offers a 100% safe option to avoid the hassle of getting infected with Covid in the office and quarantine. We recently had a consultant in the office with covid and then clients and doctors we were in close contact with, including myself, had to quarantine for a week.

I hope this article has provided a general overview of the pros and cons of online therapy. I am personally a convert and a huge proponent of online therapy for clients with mild to moderate psychological distress and I encourage anyone in doubt to give it a try!

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