7 Benefits of Online Therapy for Mental Health

Online Therapy for Mental Health (Image Source: Shutterstock)

What Is Online Therapy?

Online therapy, in a nutshell, is similar to traditional or in-office therapy. You sign up for an appointment with a licensed therapist or psychiatrist. Then you talk about your day, your feelings, or anything else you like depending on the point of your appointment and your mental health treatment recommendations. The therapist listens to you, offers support and advice, and helps coach you through your thoughts and feelings. Depending on what you need, your therapist may further recommend prescription medications, offer pet therapy to treat PTSD or other conditions, recommend that you try cognitive behavioral therapy, or offer other mental health treatment strategies to assist with your requirements.

What Are the Benefits of Online Therapy?

Even though online therapy doesn’t have you reclining on a couch while a therapist writes on a notepad in front of you, it can still be very effective and results in positive mental health outcomes. In addition, online therapy provides seven distinct benefits of online therapy.

1. Get the Therapist You Want, No Matter Your Location

Firstly, online therapy can be beneficial for those who require mental health assistance because it allows them to choose any therapist they want without considering the location. If, for example, you find an excellent therapist who works in New York City, but you live in California, you might still be able to work with them. Provided that the therapist is covered under your insurance, you can simply account for the three-hour time difference and receive invaluable mental health support each time an appointment rolls around.

2. Accessibility if You Have Limitations

Similarly, if you have mobility limitations due to a physical or mental disability, you can still get mental health support from an online therapist. Your online therapist can schedule your appointments at the ideal times for you, all without you having to sacrifice the quality of your appointments or mental health assistance. You don’t have to get in a car, go into an office, or handle any other aspects of traveling out of your home.

3. Often More Affordable

In addition to the above benefits, online therapy for mental health can be advantageous due to its lower potential cost. Some therapists charge the same amount for online and in-person visits. However, therapists who only treat online patients may charge lower average rates overall. That’s because they have fewer overhead costs to treat their clients — for example, online-only therapists don’t have to rent full offices.

4. More Comfortable Than Traditional Therapy

Perhaps the most important benefit of online therapy for mental health is increased comfort. Many therapy patients find that online therapy is superior to in-person therapy in terms of comfort because:

  • They can go to their therapy appointments from the comfort of their own homes. They don’t have to go outside their comfort zones. This is an important benefit for those who are receiving mental health support for one or more mental health disorders
  • They don’t have to speak to anyone other than their therapist, like a receptionist or assistant
  • They can enjoy a beverage or snack in the middle of their therapy
  • They can rest assured that they can get back to their daily routine or important tasks as soon as their appointment is over

5. Convenient Appointment Times

As touched on above, online therapy is beneficial since you can work with any therapist who provides online services. But this skirts around an additional benefit: extra convenience for appointment times. No longer are therapists required to have their appointments during standard office hours or in the thin stretches of time after the traditional workday to allow for people who visit them after work. With online therapy, you can sign up for a therapy appointment any time you and your therapist decide it is best. Because it only takes a few minutes to connect with your therapist over the Internet, appointment times are further not limited by travel requirements or other prep elements.

6. Increased Privacy

Many people appreciate online therapy for mental health reasons because it offers them increased privacy. What if, for example, you were to drive to a therapist’s office only to find that a neighbor is visiting the same therapist as you? This can’t happen if you stick with online therapy. With online therapy, no one has to know that you visit a therapist if that matters to you. This can be important for your reputation and for your own comfort.

7. Possibly Greater Insights for the Therapist

Lastly, online therapy for mental health could benefit your therapist and, therefore, you by proxy. Since online therapy requires you to use a webcam, you can potentially show your therapist your home environment, like your bedroom, kitchen, or other areas if you and your therapist agree that this may be helpful.

Summary

Ultimately, online therapy — just like regular therapy — isn’t for everyone. But if you’ve already tried in-person therapy and found it to be less than ideal, give online therapy a try. You might be surprised at just how helpful the right therapist communicating with you over the Internet can be.

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
1AND1

1AND1

293 Followers

We’re a BIPOC-owned mental health and wellness company. We create expert-driven content specifically designed to help you become 1% better each day.