Most of us, at one point or another, consider therapy an effective solution. However, certain obstacles can make finding a therapist problematic. Unfortunately, there is still a large unmet need for accessible therapies. Online Counseling bridges this gap for many people and allows them to get the help they need. 

By partaking in virtual therapy, therapists have made expert guidance available to many people who would not otherwise obtain treatment. In addition to this, Online Counseling is becoming more common as more research shows its effectiveness. 

All you need is a strong internet service provider (ISP), such as Cox and you can easily access therapy from the comfort of your home. Cox internet plans are versatile and suited to their varied customer requirements. More importantly, they provide a secure connection, without the need for a long-term contract. While this sounds easy, let us dig deeper and see what Online Counseling is all about?

What is Online Counseling? 

Let us first define what online therapy entails. It is also known as ‘e-therapy,’ and is a form of counseling, or remote therapy, that includes interacting with a therapist online in a variety of ways, including video chat, text messages, and sending an email. The patient can connect with his/her therapist in any way convenient for them. There are typically no scheduled appointments and as an alternative, you communicate with your therapist when it suits both of your timetables.

Is it effective? 

While it was considered a controversial topic at one point, studies have shown that Online Counseling is always useful for patients looking for a substitute for personalized doctor visits. A person can take part in digital therapy on its own or use it in addition to office visits. Online practitioners must meet the same criteria as any other therapist, including mandatory training, permit, and authorization. It is imperative to note that you should do your inquiry before contacting an online therapist, just as you would before starting a physical office consultation.

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Therapy online provides a flexible solution, and a new counseling option is extensively available to those who need it and is backed by proof of its efficacy. However, if you are considering Online Counseling for yourself or someone you care about, there are some benefits as well as drawbacks to consider before making your initial appointment. By knowing these pros and cons and evaluating them, you can decide if virtual therapy is right for you. Some benefits to be considered are:

  1. Convenience of Access

One of the prominent reasons people do not go for therapy is the lack of options available. This is particularly relevant if you live in a remote rural area where therapy services may be unavailable.  Your insurance may only apply to therapists who are in another state or too far away. Because most therapeutic practitioners have the same 9-5 hours as other professionals, you will not be able to fit therapy into your agenda for the day. Taking virtual therapy has the advantage over traditional therapy in that it is more convenient. You can save on costs of fuel and time without having to travel to and from the therapist. Online therapy is ideal for people who do not drive or have other transportation restrictions. For people with disabilities or other physical limitations, online therapy can also be a perfect choice.

  1. Affordability 

The charges of therapy can be unaffordable for many people, especially if insurance is not an option.  In addition, many mental illnesses, such as depression, make work difficult. This can make people think that therapy is not available to them.

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Considering this, online therapy may be the feasible solution. Without a physical office or staff being employed, online therapy is usually cheaper than in-person therapy. Traditional therapy methods can lead to piling costs since the sessions usually are extended over several weeks or months. 

  1. Comfortable setup

Some people find it difficult to open a therapist’s practice. Online therapy allows you to get a consultation at your home or in another convenient place. It will be easier for you to open up and talk about difficult topics. 

However, some drawbacks should be kept in mind when considering this. 

  1. State Restrictions

Some states allow non-state physicians to treat patients, while others do not. In such a case, your therapist must be licensed in your country. This may or may not be an issue depending on the company or person you choose. 

  1. Unreliable internet connection

A robust internet connection is critical to partake in e-therapy, especially video chat. Depending on your whereabouts, your internet connection may not be sufficient. There may also be infrequent lags due to inclement weather or poor internet speeds. Privacy can also be an issue at times; For example, if you have roommates or people in the house, whom you do not want to eavesdrop on therapy sessions. Therefore, it is necessary to use a reserved personal computer and protect your personal information with security. Additionally, there is also the concern that the sessions might be recorded without your knowledge, thereby making this medium’s security questionable.

  1. Insufficient response

Online therapists may seem distant to some clients who crave the face-to-face interaction of physical sessions or find them to be more effective. Furthermore, if a person is going through a personal tragedy or suicidal thoughts, it can be hindering to provide direct or immediate assistance to the client. Furthermore, some therapists may find it difficult to determine the body language or clear facial expressions of their clients during these sessions, which is a vital element during therapy sessions. 

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Online therapy can be an operative and suitable way to get access to services catering to mental health. However, that does not mean it is good for everyone. Whether online therapy is right for you is contingent on your condition and the level of your symptoms. If you are fascinated by online therapy, explore your options before committing to it. Read evaluations and do not be afraid to ask questions. Finding the right online therapist can take some time, but the effort is well worth it.

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