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What Is Teletherapy?
Teletherapy can be defined as using technology to gain access to mental health services. Technically, you can receive teletherapy through phone, text, video, and e-mail. Currently, when people talk about teletherapy, they are most often referring to online counseling provided through video conferencing.
What: Quality online counseling
Where: Provided to you in the comfort of your own home or office! I provide online counseling to residents of North Carolina and Florida. Florida residents can visit the Florida Telehealth website (http://www.flhealthsource.gov/telehealth/) for more information about out of state providers offering telehealth services.
Why: I understand what you’re going through and the challenges you’re facing. I’ve helped many clients work through similar problems and I can help you too.
How: I use a HIPAA compliant secure video conferencing platform called Doxy.me to make online counseling convenient AND confidential. All you need is a comfortable private space, good internet, and a smart phone, tablet, laptop or personal computer and we’ll talk together! There is nothing to download. You simply click on the link that I send you and our session will begin.
Who: I’m a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) with experience providing online counseling in the mental health field. I specialize in eating disorders, body image issues, anxiety, and depression.
When: Let’s find some time to talk. We can meet by phone or video for a free 30-minute consultation so that we can learn what you need and if online counseling is the right fit for you! I can usually schedule you within the same week. If you are interested in scheduling a free consultation to see if online counseling would be a good fit for you, contact me today at 980-689-1794 or [email protected]
The Benefits of Teletherapy
The following are advantages of teletherapy:
The primary benefits of teletherapy are convenience and flexibility. As long as you have a computer or smartphone, you can access help from wherever it is most comfortable for you. This saves you time and money in traveling to a therapist’s office. In addition, you can avoid the stigma and confidentiality issues that occur by having to go to a place where you might see people you know.
Some communities do not have access to therapists. Teletherapy gives people in rural areas counseling options that they never had before. Additionally, people may have problems that need specialized assistance that they can’t find locally. Fortunately, teletherapy can help those people find someone who specializes in their issues online. Further, people with disabilities may have difficulty physically getting to a therapist's office.
Depending on your therapist, teletherapy may allow you more regular contact than one weekly appointment. Certain platforms enable you to communicate through text message, chat room, e-mail, or video conferencing at times when you need to seek assistance outside your regular therapy session.
One question you may have is whether or not online counseling works as well as in-person therapy. Although research into teletherapy is just beginning, the early evidence appears to indicate it is as effective as conventional therapy.
Is Teletherapy Right For You?
Despite its many benefits, there are some issues to consider to make sure online counseling is best for your particular needs.
Are You Covered?
Some insurance plans do not cover or partially reimburse teletherapy services. Although you can still pay out of pocket, that can be very expensive, especially on an ongoing basis. Fortunately, as the popularity of teletherapy increases, it is likely that more insurance companies will cover online counseling.
For some people, an online relationship with a therapist just does not feel the same as if you see someone in-person. Certain people may have difficulty connecting with their therapist through phone or video. Because the therapeutic relationship is so integral to the success of therapy, it is an important consideration.
May Not Be Right For All Problems
If you are having serious difficulties (e.g., suicidal thoughts) teletherapy may not be right for you. It can be much more difficult for a therapist to accurately assess a person if they are not in the same room. Additionally, if a crisis arises, counselors will frequently want to be able to deal with those situations in person. Further, certain types of therapy may not be conducive to online counseling. For example, if you need exposure therapy, that is more difficult to administer remotely.
Should I Try Teletherapy?
The flexibility and increased access teletherapy provide are very attractive to many people. While it has several advantages, it might not be right for everyone. It is important to consider your specific situation to determine if online counseling will meet your emotional needs.
Who Can Benefit From Online Counseling?
- People with disabilities who lack mobility to physically attend face to face counseling sessions and are able to work a keyboard or assistive technology.
- Those who live in isolated areas or have no access to mental health therapists
- People who prefer to seek therapy outside of their community
- Clients who are caretakers and unable to attend therapy sessions outside of the home
- People who have varied work schedules and are unable to plan for appointments
- People with anxiety , coping skills, depression, life transitions, school issues, and self-esteem
- Persons who do not have access to direct public or private transportation services
- College Students
* Please note that online counseling is available for North Carolina and Florida residents only due to state licensing laws.
What to Expect: Our first session will be an assessment. Think of it as a mental health check up. I'll ask lots of questions to get a good sense of who you are and how you might be helped. I'll offer recommendations for treatment. They may be with me, or in cases where others would be a better fit, I promise to share that recommendation as well. The first session is not a commitment to therapy. You can choose to proceed or not. It is an opportunity to learn more about yourself and about the process. Each day is a new chance to invest in your best self.
If you are ready to learn more about online counseling, contact Calm Blue Waters Counseling at 980-689-1794 or you may email me at [email protected], or complete the contact form for a free online counseling consultation today.