Faced with signing up with a frantically long NHS waiting list…Betterhelp Business Registration… “I just felt that I couldn’t wait any longer– I was motivated and all set to handle my concerns and rather liked the concept of doing so in the convenience of my own house,” stated the 29-year-old, who resides in London. After an online search, he found a therapist whose profile suited his needs and reserved a chat session for the next day.
Remote, text-based counselling is growing in popularity in the UK. The physician app Babylon uses therapy to 150,000 active users, while PlusGuidance, an online counselling service, has 10,000 users. The US-based service BetterHelp also has 150,000 registered UK users (though not all are active). Talkspace, another online therapy platform, reports it has 500,000 signed up users worldwide, with many in the US.
Online training advises therapists on whatever from using emojis to preventing misconceptions. They also need to protect clients’ personal data– an issue that has caused debate in the US, where big online treatment platforms have come under the spotlight.
Buckley said clients ought to examine services’ personal privacy policies prior to signing up. “Not all online counselling sites utilize expertly trained therapists or follow an ethics policy, so ask your GP for a suggestion in the very first circumstances. Similar to all kinds of services and assistance, what works for one person may not work for another person,” he stated.
Marc Bush, chief policy advisor at Young Minds, said that while online counselling services are valuable, “they should not change in person therapy with a trained expert. If a young person is having a hard time, we would encourage them to speak to their GP in the first instance, or to contact a recognized service like The Mix, Childline or the Samaritans.”.
For Rackham, who has actually generalised stress and anxiety disorder, online counselling wasn’t the ideal fit. “I felt it was near impossible for the therapist to truly get a sense of the concerns I was handling, as all they had to go from was my typed-out words. I think I realised after that online session how crucial interpersonal interaction was.