When therapy is done via telecommunication devices or tools it is often referred to as telepsychology. Other names used to refer to it include online therapy, web therapy, text therapy, and phone therapy. So, if you seek therapy sessions online, then you have engaged in telepsychology.
More research is being done to establish how effective telepsychology is when compared to in-person visits. Generally, online mental health counseling has tons of benefits, offering a convenient method of consulting your therapist without necessarily having to go to the office. It is also the perfect way of connecting with your therapist when both of you are located far apart from each other. Even with either willing to commute, it helps to cut the unnecessary expenses.
It gives you the chance to choose the best therapist and a convenient schedule, making it super efficacious. Another major upside is that clients are able to get comfortable and even share things that would be hard to communicate when in-person session. That said, what are some of the ways to get the best results with online therapists?
Is the therapist licensed?
In most states, psychotherapists and therapists are not legally protected, meaning that you might fall in the wrong hands. While licensing is necessary, your therapist might not be as professional as they appear. Licensing ensures that you are protected since you only connect with individuals who are qualified for the job, and with the required credentials. It is also a way of ensuring that your online therapist has a proper understanding of your specific problem. Depending on the state you are in, you can search from the directory offered to see qualified therapists in your area.
Is the psychologist licensed in the state you live?
While licensing is important, you also need to ensure that it is relevant to your state. Each state has its own rules and laws that govern practices in different fields. So ensure to check if your provider is licensed by the jurisdiction of your state.
Is the site or app secure?
With the many online therapy services offered online, cases of identity theft and breach of information have been high. This is because most of these sites and apps used are not safe. You are handing out confidential information about yourself, so the least you can do is conduct proper background information about those platforms. This is to ensure that every piece of information you provide is protected. For instance, is the platform you are using HIPAA-compliant? Also, if it is incapable of verifying the therapist’s identity or yours, then you should be concerned.
Mode Of Payment
Another way to ensure a swift online therapy session is establishing the mode of payment beforehand. The last thing you want is to get frustrated during payment, which is awkward given that you are there to seek a form of mental tranquility. You could also inquire about insurance, since some companies offer packages that you might find helpful. Oftentimes, most insurance companies don’t pay for online therapy services, so it is important that you are prepared to cover the whole cost. However, you can inquire from your insurer first.
Check Their Credentials
One of the most important factors for a great online therapy experience is professionalism and credentials. You would be surprised at how large the number is for people without credentials offering online therapy. Don’t fall for letters meant to signify certifications, these are often very easy to obtain and most importantly, might not align with your personal situation.
It is not a coincidence that ‘online therapists’ who are the least qualified will have multiple letters with the least significance. These are letters possibly awarded in workshops and other insignificant settings. To avoid falling into the hands of unqualified individuals, check if their title is regulated by the state licensing board. Any qualified individual will not hesitate to provide proof of the authenticity of their profession.
Both patients and therapists are exploring online sites trying to find the best channels for their sessions. For instance, text messages are very convenient when you need to quickly check-in with your therapists or even pass a reminder. Some of the apps created for therapy have been designed to track thoughts and moods, making them a convenient tool.
In addition, services such as real time streaming or web-conferencing are perfect for situations where either the therapist or patient are inaccessible in person. While online therapy provides a wide array of benefits and conveniences, some people still end up getting underwhelming results. The above tips will help you get the results you expect for your online therapy.