Over the past few years, teletherapy has become an increasingly popular method of therapy as it provides mental health treatment to those who previously were unable to receive it. Obstacles like distance, transportation and scheduling conflicts no longer interfere when a counseling session is as simple as a video call on your computer in your own living room.
With specific regard to mental health, teletherapy offers many of the same benefits as traditional therapy, while at the same time benefiting those individuals who prefer, or require, distance.
How does mental health teletherapy help me?
Recent years have seen massive strides in making mental health teletherapy more efficient and overall useful. Most licensed teletherapy providers offer online therapy through encrypted computer connections, allowing clients to receive the same levels of personalized care from safe distances, without a compromise in treatment quality or frequency.
Teletherapy for mental health applications also offers a variety of unique benefits. These include:
- Treatment windows that can accommodate your schedule
- The capacity to receive treatment anywhere, as long as you can establish a secure internet connection
- Virtual therapy group availability, allowing you to share thoughts and feelings in a non-judgemental, confidential setting
- Improved comfort during treatment, since you’ll receive the help you need from the comfort of your own home
- No obligation to drive to treatment, which is especially beneficial to college students, disabled individuals and anyone in especially remote environments
- Reduced wait times and the removal of the need to sit in a waiting room in person
While teletherapy does present its own set of challenges – including the volatility of technology from time to time, and the lack of proximity to your counselor, therapist or psychiatrist – it’s a viable mental health treatment option for many during a time when traditional mental health therapy is more necessary and less accessible than ever.
What can I expect from mental health teletherapy?
Teletherapy can help you address and manage any mental health issues that you may be experiencing or struggling with.
First, you will schedule an individual session with your mental health counselor. This primary session is all about you: it allows your therapist to learn about your situation, your mental health challenges and all of your goals for the future. It also allows you to grow more familiar with the online mental health counseling model. In addition, you’ll be invited to ask any questions you might have, either about the teletherapy process or about mental health treatment in general.
Individual and family mental health teletherapy sessions are then provided on an ongoing basis, as necessary. Qualified therapists lead all teletherapy sessions, and are ready to help all clients continually define ongoing mental health goals.
Each teletherapy program differs from provider to provider, but at The Light Program, teletherapy participants in our intensive outpatient program typically attend an average of 18 sessions across 4-8 weeks; partial hospitalization program clients typically participate in 10-15 treatment days.
Upon completion of a specific program, clients are referred to the next, most appropriate level of care until they establish firm management of individual mental health challenges they face.
How is teletherapy administered?
Currently, teletherapy is offered through an encrypted, online communications platform that confidentially connects clients with counselors while adhering to all HIPAA guidelines.
Therapists suggest that you prepare before your mental health teletherapy session begins, both mentally and physically. Here are a few suggestions to help get your mind and body in the right place before a teletherapy session:
- Make sure your teletherapy room is comfortable
- Use headphones during the session
- If you’re worried about other individuals in the house overhearing, use a noise machine or white noise app on your phone
- Test all technology – computer, headphones, microphone, internet connection – before your teletherapy session begins
- Use the restroom and change into comfortable clothes to set yourself at ease beforehand
Ultimately, teletherapy is not the same as a traditional mental health therapy. You won’t be in the same room as your healthcare provider, and your therapist won’t be able to read body language and nonverbal cues as easily. Still, teletherapy for mental health can help deliver positive, consistent benefits in helping you understand, recognize and mitigate the mental health challenges you face on a daily basis.
Begin teletherapy today
The Light Program routinely delivers the benefits of online mental health counseling to children, teens and adults struggling with mental health issues. Our outpatient mental health treatment programs help you focus on your own mental health, through teletherapy treatment modalities that deliver counseling benefits remotely.
Call 610-644-6464 or reach out through our secure online form, to begin making these benefits your own today.