Today, many of us are ordering groceries online, having telehealth appointments, or meeting with colleagues on Zoom. But what about counseling—is virtual therapy a good option? Since the onset of the pandemic, many mental health practitioners started offering virtual counseling. Here at New Era Therapy, we offer virtual therapy, telephone therapy, and traditional in-office therapy.
Here’s an overview of virtual therapy, if it works, and some benefits of virtual therapy.
What is Virtual Therapy?
Traditionally, therapy was always done in person—a conversation between people. Today, with so many tools and platforms at our fingertips, therapy takes on many more forms. Virtual therapy includes:
- Therapy by video chat (i.e., Zoom)
- Telephone therapy
- Online chats, voice messaging, or texting
In short, virtual therapy is anything that uses technology to support the therapeutic relationship.
Does Virtual Therapy Work?
We should say right away that virtual therapy is not the right choice for everyone. Just like you need to find a therapist or counselor that is the right fit, you need to find the right type of therapy that works for you.
That said, virtual therapy is an excellent option for many people. It’s easier to fit into your daily schedule, which might make it more likely to stay consistent with it. The different platforms also may help clients open up as it’s less “intense” than an in-person session.
Despite this, some people mistakenly believe that virtual therapy is not as effective as in-person. However, literature reviews have shown that virtual therapy has high efficacy and satisfaction with clients.
If you’re curious to learn more about the efficacy of virtual therapy, review this article that compiles the scientific data.
With this overwhelming evidence of virtual therapy working, it really comes down to what works best for you!
Benefits of Virtual Therapy
There are many benefits to virtual therapy. The most obvious is that it is more flexible and can be done from any location at any time, as long as there is an internet connection and devices to use.
Besides that, there are several important benefits to virtual therapy:
- Accessible to people with physical limitations
- More flexible scheduling for people with busy schedules
- Can be more cost-effective, depending on the provider
- Provides more options for those who live in small or remote communities
- Increased options of professionals so you can find the right fit
- May support more frequent, shorter sessions for quick support or help in the moment (i.e., pick up the phone and call when you need immediate help rather than scheduling an appointment many weeks away)
- Can be a preferred option for those who are highly anxious, struggle to leave home, or prefer some level of separation via a screen and device
Because virtual therapy is so flexible, we’re able to offer visits 7 days a week and 365 days a year at New Era. Whatever time of day is convenient for you… we’re here! We work with many insurance providers as well, so there are no barriers to accessing support for your mental health.
If you’re curious to learn more about virtual therapy or how New Era Therapy can support your mental health goals, please get in touch with us today.