Throughout the past several years, the use of online video conferencing for therapy and in the medical field in general has grown exponentially.
Traditionally, clients seeking treatment would meet with a therapist in person. However, several years before COVID-19 made video therapy mandatory, studies showed that many patients preferred online therapy to in-person counseling.
n fact, research completed and published by the Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare showed that therapy from a distance can be just as effective as in-person therapy. According to the study, clients utilizing teletherapy “reported similar levels of overall satisfaction and comfort as in-person ones” the authors wrote.
So, is online therapy or video therapy as effective? The answer largely depends on the individual seeking treatment. Many studies about online counseling have determined that not only was online counseling effective, in some cases it was even more so.
View the pros and cons to online therapy and its effectiveness below:
Benefits of Onine Video Therapy
See Your Therapist When You’re Traveling
For certain clients, the ability to see a therapist remotely can be very beneficial.
Frequent travelers would miss their sessions and lose the momentum of continuous treatment without the ability to seek online therapy.
Knowing you can see your therapist remotely during work gives clients the flexibility to continue treatment regardless of their work or travel schedule.
More Frequent Contact
Weekly sessions may not be adequate for many clients. For those requiring more frequent sessions, utilizing online therapy can be very helpful. The ability to schedule last-minute appointments is a huge benefit for these clients and allows them to reach out about issues immediately rather than waiting a week or more. This can be very effective in progressing treatment.
Seeing Clients Is Better Than Simply Hearing Them
With the advancement of video on phones, computers and tablets, it has become much easier to see someone remotely. One advantage of remote therapy is that therapists are able to see their clients’ facial expressions, body language and tone. Vocal signals, body language and expressions can be quite telling and give a therapist a better picture of how their clients are feeling, as well as their thoughts, moods, and behaviors.
Much of the communication in therapy is non-verbal, so it is important to use online video therapy if in-person sessions are not an option.
Drawbacks of Online Therapy
Some Clients Need Human Interaction
Although you can see a person through video, experience their behavior and see their facial expressions, many clients find in-person therapy to be more effective. After all, humans are social beings and having face-to-face time can be beneficial throughout the course of a client’s treatment.
Lack Of Intimacy
While every person is different, many clients desire the connection that comes with seeing a person face-to-face in order to make meaningful changes through therapy. Effectiveness of treatment largely depends on the individual. So, while many clients can make meaningful and impactful change through online therapy, others find seeing a therapist in person to have more benefits.
Find The Right Fit For You
Counseling and therapy is extremely beneficial for those going through specific struggles, and in general for clients who aren’t suffering but want to seek treatment to have someone to speak to.