Therapy can be of several types, instead of which there are different ways to assess the patient. Therefore, it is not possible to use one type of alternative for different methods and means of therapy. In majority, cognitive behavior therapy – which constitutes of talking for counseling purposes – can use telemedicine as an alternative; telemedicine being online therapy.
People worry whether online therapy will be as effective as one on one therapy, as the opportunity to observe the patient’s expressions and behavior would be lost. Depending on the patient’s subjective reports can sometimes yield false results. Therefore, studying the body language and overall demeanor of the individual is essential. Nevertheless, there have been studies that prove that the effectiveness of online therapy is no less than face to face therapy (source: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2013.06.032).
Although teletherapy is helpful, it isn’t meant for everyone. Behavior correcting, compulsiveness, positive therapy, therapy for stress, and even eating disorder counseling, have shown affirmative aftermath of online therapy. If you are still unsure about the potential of telemedicine in today’s world of advancement and lack of time, here are a few of many factors of online therapy that will change your mind.
Benefits of Online Therapy
- Easy to Access: For people who live in remote areas or lack proper transportation – online therapy is beneficial. Moreover, for patients who have health problems and cannot travel, teletherapy is one of the only means through which they can receive therapy
- Provision of Anonymity: You will have the option to fill in any name for yourself, which allows you not to be registered under the therapy with your legal name. This ensures that, if you do not wish for anyone to find out about your health condition in the future, your matters stay private
- Cost-Effective: It has been noted that online therapy cost less than face-to-face therapy. Therefore, if someone in need of counseling that can be given through teletherapy, and can see improvement due time – this means of therapy prove to beneficial for them
- Organized: Scheduling appointments for online therapy is more comfortable than it is for face to face therapy, as traveling has been eliminated as a factor that may hinder schedules.
- Moreover, if there is any in routines, the patient – or the therapist – can be informed about it, following which there can be easy adjustments made to the schedules
- Less Time Taking: It has been studied that, when it comes to the time taken up by the therapist – it is 7.8 times less when compared to face to face therapy. This allows the practitioner to appoint as many patients as possible in their working hours
- Comfort Aspect: A lot of times, it can be overwhelming for patients to see other people while they are in the waiting room, or even throughout their journey from home to the office. The comfort of their own space will calm patients who have fears like this – especially people with social anxiety, or agoraphobia
- Sharing Private Information: Some people may feel more comfortable sharing information in the privacy of their own space, rather than an office.
- Moreover, sometimes it feels more comfortable to share private information about oneself online than in a face to face interaction with a therapist
Despite being an excellent alternative for one on one therapy, online therapy certainly has its limitations. As mentioned before, this form of teletherapy is not made for everyone and every form of counseling.
Limitations of Online Therapy!
- Heavily Dependent on the Internet: Any significant to minor problems in signals or Wi-Fi can disrupt the flow of the conversation that the therapist is having with the patient. This disruption can lead to several issues in the mind of the patient, which disallows them from sharing more information or opting from having more counseling sessions. However, this can be tackled with the provision and surety of proper Wi-Fi on both the sides
- Limited to Certain Therapy: Telemedicine is not meant for all types of therapy. Mainly, it constitutes of cognitive behavior therapy, suicide helpline, positive therapy, and eating disorder in mild cases. When one is aware of all the pros and cons of Online Therapy, it becomes easier to have online sessions
- License Aspect: The most crucial factor to consider before you go for online therapy is to ensure that your therapist is licensed and reliable. If you are unsure about their legality, then it is best to avoid indulging
With the knowledge of the benefits and limitations of Online Therapy, you now have an understanding of the extent of its potential and drawbacks. Instead of proper research about teletherapy sites, you can find the right online therapist for yourself.