The current COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted lives all across the country and the world. And while concerns about physical health remain a priority, those with mental health conditions know that these events can easily lead to an emotional crisis.
If you’re struggling with anxiety or you’ve been diagnosed with some form of depression (just like 350 million people worldwide), you may feel helpless at a time like this. To make matters worse, stay-at-home orders may make it more difficult for people in need to receive help.
Fortunately, there is a solution: therapy via video. But if you’ve never tried therapeutic teleconferencing before, you might understandably have some questions about the process. We’re answering some of those questions in today’s post.
How Does Telehealth Therapy Work?
Essentially, teleconference therapy sessions work like any other video chat. Both the therapist and the patient remain in remote locations and use video conferencing technology to connect during their session. The therapist would provide a secure portal that allows both parties to “dial in” to the shared, virtual conference room for each session.
Is Therapy Via Video as Effective as In-Person Therapy?
While it’s easy to dismiss the idea of seeing your therapist via video, consider how many businesses have now made the transition to teleconferencing as part of their daily operations. Many of us now rely on these platforms to meet with both colleagues and clients — and while there are prone to be some technical glitches from time to time, these portals have allowed us to largely continue without too many disruptions or a drastic decrease in quality.
It may also be helpful to note that online therapy, in general, has been found to be highly effective. In fact, a handful of studies found that online therapy sessions were just as effective as in-person sessions in treating anxiety disorders, depression, and more. Of course, experiences can vary depending on the quality of the therapist and the circumstances surrounding the client. However, it’s promising to know that it’s not the medium of delivery that matters — it’s the content of the session and the willingness of the client to make improvements.
Are There Drawbacks to Teleconference Therapy Sessions?
Like any kind of telehealth appointment, video therapy sessions can potentially make treatment more accessible. However, there are some barriers that accompany video therapy. If a patient doesn’t have access to an internet connection at home and is unable to use a smartphone to connect with their therapist, therapy via video may be out of the question.
Along the same vein, a patient who may not have enough privacy at home or who may be involved in a volatile home situation may not feel comfortable engaging in this type of therapy. It’s also important to note that video therapy or any type of online therapy may not be recommended for those who are experiencing psychosis or suicidal thoughts, as these mental health concerns may require more immediate medical attention.
What Should I Do If I’m Interested in Pursuing Therapy Via Video?
More and more therapists are offering this option in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, Pax Renewal Center has long since offered therapy via video for our clients. It’s easy to make an appointment for video therapy — simply call us, email us, or fill out the contact form on our website.
Whether you’re new to talk therapy or you’re interested in transitioning to an all-video format for the foreseeable future, we’re here to ensure you get the support you need. For more information, get in touch with our team today.