Online therapy is also known as telepsychology. Telepsychology means a consultant, therapist, or psychologist intervene through various channel like Video call through Google Meet, Zoom, Facetime, Wats app video call, or any learning application developed by them.
But a question is online therapy effective? Does a therapist and client build rapport? Does intervention become successful? Is it only useful just because of easy access and saving lots of time and energy of traveling?
You might also think can I go physically or should I talk online? So, here I would love to share my research and experience with you about Telepsychology.
Is online therapy effective?
Arjun was 29 years old and had left India after Covid 19. He lost his father during the Covid period. And stuck here with his mother. He was completely in dilemma what to do? Whether to pursue a career further or whether to stay with mother and take care of her.
His mother also felt very much alone after his father’s demise. During this confused state of mind, he lost his job as well as his Visa is about to expire and he needs to take a call urgently whether to move on and take a practical step. So, finally, it concluded with his journey to the States and he will again join his old position and company.
As soon as he reached and settled again in his life. Back to the States took a pretty good amount of days. But he found some change in him. He felt more anxious about his mother’s health. He found that his overthinking has increased a lot which affects his work life. He decided to seek some help. But could not figure out how to approach it.
Basically, Arjun is more comfortable talking in regional language though he is versatile with other languages. Also, he feels he can express his feelings in his own mother tongue gives him an immediate connection. Through Online presence, he could have figured out a professional and decided to take a few initial sessions. And those went well.
He found that he can relax after his busy work and have a session. Sometimes in the morning hours when he needs intervention from a Psychologist, he can seek it. He found it very useful because whenever he felt that he needed the attention and intervention of a therapist he booked an appointment and he got his way. So, he felt this may not be possible without Telepsychology.
As you read above one case of online therapy. Of course, I have changed his name but many such people have similar feelings of Gratefulness with a therapist. Because they feel telepsychology intervention basically provides urgent attention as and when required. No need to wait in a long queue.
Or wait till the booking date. This is one side of the single case details I have described. But let’s talk and analyse the side of a psychologist. What do I feel after having telepsychology as a psychologist?
A few days back I was reading one of the research studies published in the American Psychology Association about the effectiveness of Telepsychology. In that article, it has mentioned very clearly that access to the session even from remote areas can be possible.
It has the same effect or same as in-person or one-on-one counselling. But rather it is more improvised intervention can be possible by saving lots of energy and time. And getting the same results.
Here are some of the benefits of the Telepsychology. In the later part of the article, you may find a comparison chart that helps you to understand more about the way of doing online counselling.
Benefits of Online Therapy
Involvement of Family and person:
While doing the online counselling I found that people are more involved. Because they are more comfortable in the place from where they are. The most important thing is that they do not need to waste time for traveling to attend typically one hour session.
They comfortably sit in their own chair and make notes or are more inclined to know themselves. As they are sitting in their comfortable place, that is home other people from the family also get more attention. Which helps them and family more, to develop or cure themselves. The family also get involved optimistically and tried to implement many exercises to improve the mental disorders.
Decreased Negative Thought pattern:
Cognitive Behavior Therapy is a psychotherapy which is ahead then talk therapy. A person who can attend Telepsychology or online therapy also gets benefits the same as in one-on-one therapy. Because this is a way to conquer old belief systems, thought patterns, and behavioral patterns.
Various tools available online like sharing screen, whiteboard, and other tools helpful in making sessions more attentive and result-oriented.
Alliance is the same as in-person:
While booking a session people have many questions in mind. They have queries about how the session or therapy is working. Do they really bring anything to the session? Does it really work or how do they get maximum benefit? These are common questions one can have.
So, first, you may check the article on How Therapy is working and how effective it is. Science Behind Therapy. As therapies are working how your brain is working? Your old belief system and your stressors of life. Simultaneously your coping mechanism for any given point of time.
How do you respond to your stress, anxiety, trauma, depression, personality disorders, etc.? In Online Therapy sessions as well you get the same alliance as in person you get. In fact, homework and changing thought patterns can be more easily followed up.
Measure weekly progress:
Weekly progress is important for any person to measure and share with the Psychologist. Brain and thought patterns are such that work in alignment. If you really want to change. And want to overcome and heal your mental illness then weekly measurement is effective.
There are various measurement exercises one can follow as suggested by the Psychologist which is by the various therapy model. In online therapy, it is faster and easier to check and measure improvement and address unimproved areas.
Ease of Scheduling a session:
Some professionals need the urgent attention of the Psychologist. However, due to their work timings and the distance between Psychologist clinics, they may avoid or be unable to book a session. There is lots of Ease of Scheduling an online session even during work hours. More ease one can get while booking an online session.
Above are the major benefits of Online therapy. And thanks to Telepsychology. At the time of Covid 19, many preferred to take online therapy to cure them and overcome their mental illness.
Still, let’s also check benefits of the in-person counselling. Booking a session for one-on-one counselling or Group counselling always raises lots of questions in mind.
In-person sessions have less or no disturbance. Because the environment works behind the scenes. A place is quiet and cozy. While sitting in a relaxed armchair or lying down on a couch a person feels to open up more. The session grows more towards the direction of deep thoughts and feelings.
The client is feeling more heard and self-fulfilled. While therapy session grows a person can feel and analyze his thoughts and feelings while interacting with the Psychologist.
Easier to Establish Rapport:
It takes just a few minutes to establish a rapport. Only two persons are facing each other. With few direct questions and through the motivational interview method a client immediately sets the tone of the Psychologist.
Many psychologists use the method of Socratic questions which makes a person more self-aware. Which builds an immediate connection between both.
Increased Engagement Between Therapist and Client:
Finding cues in clients is more difficult if rapport is not established. Clients have so much to share and discuss but the Therapist knows what to get more on the surface.
There are so many cues but finding that one cue is more important and is more easier and beneficial, in-person session or one-on-one counselling.
Which area of life is responsible for mental illness can be addressed quickly in one-on-one counselling. Also, practicing various exercises in the presence of the Psychologist is very useful. So all confusion and unclarity can be addressed immediately.
Understanding Nonverbal Communication:
All clients are not always able to communicate verbally. Their body language, facial expressions, gestures while addressing the pain area, and movement of their eyes and body can be understood by the Psychologist. A sigh of relief also works better in a session as the Psychologist can understand a client is getting a cure and relief from a session.
Hope you may get information what you look for. If still you have any more topics to know you can definitely scroll to other articles as well and Book The Session Online.