Research has found that online therapy can be effective in treating anxiety, depression and trauma. There is no difference in patient satisfaction depending on whether the therapy is online or in person, and for either of the two methods of receiving therapy, the results are better as a person attends more sessions. Online therapy can be an effective and convenient way to access mental health services. But that doesn't mean it's right for everyone.
Whether or not online therapy is right for you depends on your condition and the severity of your symptoms. At the time, it may have been difficult to see what a practical treatment option could look like. But nowadays online therapy is commonplace. Over the past 30 years, researchers have conducted clinical trials with tens of thousands of patients, with excellent results.
In addition to the benefits just mentioned, online therapy is reliable. When it comes to face-to-face counseling, sometimes the unknown and the unpredictable get in the way. For example, we have scheduled our appointment and done everything right, but then work on the road, bad weather conditions or an unexpected illness hinder our ability to attend our session. With online counseling, you usually don't have to worry about these obstacles (meaning you don't have to go through the hassle of rescheduling either).
We also spoke to Jennifer Benetato, LCSW, LMT, C-IAYT, R-DMT, therapist and adjunct professor at New York University's Silver School of Social Work, about how to make the most of online therapy. The drawbacks of online therapy include ambient noise (especially since many therapists and clients are currently attending sessions from home), technological problems, and lack of non-verbal communication. In fact, people often tell me that their online experience has been more satisfying than their previous in-person therapy. Some therapists offer online therapy through their own private practices, while others use third-party websites or directories to connect with patients.
Any of these methods can help reduce the cost of online therapy and make it as affordable as it is convenient. While online therapy is usually cheaper than in-person therapy, the cost can vary considerably depending on where in the world you live, the benefits you have access to, and the type of service offered. Unlike face-to-face therapy, online therapy allows you to connect with a licensed therapist or counselor using any device that has an Internet connection, such as a computer, tablet, or smartphone. Confidentiality is as important in online therapy as it is in more traditional forms of treatment administration.
Online therapy also works well for the therapists themselves in a way that was previously unthinkable. Finally, as a consumer, in some cases it can be difficult to know if an online therapy service is credible, reliable or safe to use. Even if you feel that your mental well-being is strong, online therapy can help you strengthen yourself psychologically. Online therapy is not a new approach to counseling, but it is a practical and effective approach to counseling.
I have been doing therapy exclusively online for the past two and a half years, the last year of which has been in my own private practice. If you have reliable access to the Internet, online therapy gives you relatively quick and easy access to a treatment that would otherwise not have been available to you. People who are unable to leave home for various reasons, such as physical or mental illness, may find online therapy as a useful alternative to traditional face-to-face psychotherapy settings. Seeing an online therapist from the comfort and safety of your home can often help you open up, be more vulnerable, and better cope with difficult emotions that may arise during a therapy session.