Teletherapy has become a widely available and viable form of therapy over the last two years. And while things are opening up in many communities and therapists are returning to their offices, some clients are choosing to continue meeting with their therapist via telehealth platforms. But why would therapy work over telehealth when it has traditionally been a very “in-person” process? And does teletherapy work for every client?
Teletherapy refers to therapy services being offered online typically through video conferencing, although some businesses allow for other forms of communication. Any device that can access the internet can connect to a teletherapy platform to meet with a therapist. This advancement in technology has changed how accessible therapy services are and has opened the door to individuals who previously could not easily receive services. While there are many benefits to therapy, let us explore the benefits specific to teletherapy and why this service is so helpful.
No matter where you are, what you do, or what your schedule is – you can meet with a therapist. This service has allowed those with limited mobility, those who live in rural areas, and those who have busy schedules to meet with therapists and work on their mental health goals. This service has also been instrumental in helping individuals observe social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Meeting with a therapist from the comfort of your own home ensures a different level of privacy than what you experience when you attend therapy sessions in an office. There is no chance that you will run into someone in the waiting room who might recognize you from the community. Additionally, it may feel easier to open up about your mental health experiences when you feel comfortable in a space that is already familiar to you.
Something that is incredibly important to therapy is being able to attend consistently and have continuity across sessions as you work towards your treatment plan goals. When working from a DBT or EMDR perspective (both of which can be conducted via teletherapy platforms), meeting regularly to assess for skills use, effectiveness, and processing is essential. Teletherapy can allow for continuity to be achieved as you are able to flexibly schedule your sessions at times that are convenient for you. This feeling of flexibility and convenience can help you feel more inclined to be consistent with your appointments and help you reach your goals for mental health.
4. Shorter Wait Lists.
Because teletherapy is a newer option in many communities, the wait lists for therapists with teletherapy slots are often shorter. This means you can start working on your mental health goals sooner, rather than having to wait for an in-person appointment time to open. Many therapists have days or blocks of time dedicated to teletherapy appointments and there could be a spot waiting for you.
If starting or returning to therapy is something you have been considering, perhaps consider teletherapy as an option if you would like convenience, flexibility, or have needs that would be better met through a virtual session with a therapist. While teletherapy can feel strange at first, over time it becomes a comfortable experience. Screens are not an inhibitor to treatment goals being reached and supportive relationships being formed.
And, if you are wanting to start or return to therapy, our office is accepting clients and would love to help you work on your mental health goals.