Online counseling is fast becoming a practice preferred by therapists and clients. The fast and continuous growth of technology has paved the way for such advancements and has changed the way we see counseling. Once formally termed as an alternative therapy, online counseling has surpassed traditional counseling and bridged different issues such as accessibility, convenience and more.
A growing number of mental health services now employ and offer online counseling, and the support the model provides, most especially to young people, offers many benefits. People nowadays utilize the internet for research on a variety of topics, including information on mental health–its diagnosis, symptoms, and treatments.
With the communication process being remarkably faster nowadays due to technological advancements, it is no surprise that therapists are now exploring the World Wide Web to offer their services to promote good mental health.
Years ago, therapy and counseling were limited to in-person and telephone sessions. But the emergence of online counseling changed and improved that. Setting up online counseling blogs poses many significant benefits for both clients and therapists.
As Susan Heitler Ph.D. put it “The times, however, are a’changing. Within Colorado, individuals now can obtain treatment over Skype or by telephone from any Colorado-licensed therapist. For individuals and couples who live in rural areas with few if any therapists, these new rules can seriously enlarge ability to get help.”
Therapists seeking to offer online counseling and setting up blogs should consider some important aspects regarding this concept. Here are some of the benefits associated with online counseling blogs:
Some clients are uncomfortable with the concept of counseling. Employing an online therapist can help the client feel much safer and will encourage them to open up more. Without traditional face-to-face meetings, clients can feel more confident in sharing and opening up about their experiences. Online counseling offers a more discrete alternative to face-to-face meetings, and ultimately, it can motivate clients to seek treatment.
With the faster communication process, counseling and therapy sessions are now quicker and can reach a wider audience. This particular method of counseling is easily and readily accessible for both the client and therapist. Also, differently-abled individuals have equal access to online counseling; therefore, they are more empowered to seek these services. Also, people from isolated areas can now easily remotely access online counseling through the internet.
Correspondence is done at both the client’s and the therapist’s own schedule. It is especially beneficial for the people who live a hectic life with equally hectic schedules. The traditional method of scheduling and setting appointments is foregone as clients can easily shoot a message to his online therapist, and the therapist can quickly correspond to his client’s message. As Stephanie A. Sarkis Ph.D. states it “Online counseling is a good option when you are traveling in a remote area and you need a neutral third-party to discuss issues. It’s also a good option when you have a varied schedule and just can’t make it in for a face-to-face appointment. Just because you’re on the road doesn’t mean your problems go away — they are just different problems.”
The costs of counseling and therapy are significantly lower. On the side of the therapist, operational expenses such as rent and utilities are not essentially significant in online counseling. Thus, overhead costs are lowered. On the side of the client, costs such as transport are not considered anymore as they can easily contact their therapist online.
Clients and therapists are not only allowed to entertain just face-to-face and telephone meetings. Online counseling provides some options to both parties, such as web conferencing, instant messaging, chat rooms, electronic mails, and more. The client can choose the method he is most comfortable with, making the sessions go on more smoothly. And even Robert T Muller Ph.D. says that “Still, face-to-face mental health treatments are far from being replaced. Just as older styles of therapy are used alongside newer ones, online therapy may represent a promising treatment option for those comfortable with the format.”
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