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 method 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 may be right for you depends on your condition and the severity of your symptoms. Online therapy can sometimes be cheaper than a face-to-face session. The fees of the most established therapists can be prohibitively expensive (rates range from 1,500 to 3,000 rupees per hour in India) and major insurers pay the same amount per session no matter how the therapy is administered. Meanwhile, Kumaar Bagrodia, founder of Mumbai-based company NeuroLeap, which uses technology to help people improve their mental health, says online sessions are available for as little as 500 rupees per session in India.
It's always worth going to a therapist to find out if he operates a sliding fee scale (according to your income) or a special rate for students or job seekers, advises Dr. Croft. Seeing a therapist online from the comfort and safety of your own home can often help you open up, be more vulnerable, and better cope with the difficult emotions that may arise during a therapy session. Online therapy removes geographical restrictions, making it difficult to enforce legal and ethical codes.
While online therapy is often 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. Some people may feel more comfortable undergoing therapy in a digital environment, especially younger people who are more familiar with these methods of communication, but other therapists and patients alike may benefit more from therapy that uses more direct human contact. You don't need to have a clinically diagnosed condition to benefit from talking to a professional, and online therapy can be an easy way to get started. As people are urged to stay home as much as they can, online therapy can be a way to increase access and deliver services in a way that therapists simply can't do safely right now.
Online therapy may require you to research the privacy policies of video and messaging platforms to protect your information. Online and in-person therapy options allow more people to access mental health care than ever before. Even if you feel that your mental well-being is strong, online therapy can help you strengthen yourself psychologically. Drawbacks to online therapy include ambient noise (especially since many therapists and clients are currently attending sessions from home), technological issues, and lack of nonverbal communication.
Meanwhile, consulting psychiatrist Dr. James Arkell, from London's Nightingale Hospital, has noticed that online therapy is tailored to younger people because they find texting and FaceTiming to be familiar territory and can happily evaluate them via a smartphone. However, another review of 19 studies found that online CBT was superior to placebo and was on the waiting list, and equal in effectiveness as face-to-face therapy for treating anxiety. In addition to the importance of face-to-face interaction, there are other aspects to consider when comparing online therapy to in-person therapy.
Become an informed consumer of telepsychology services, learn the factors to consider when considering online therapy, and explore additional resources. People who are unable to leave home for a variety of reasons, such as physical or mental illness, may find that online therapy is a useful alternative to traditional in-person psychotherapy settings. .