Faced with joining a frantically long NHS waiting list…Betterhelp Reviews Google… “I simply felt that I couldn’t wait any longer– I was motivated and ready to deal with my concerns and rather liked the idea of doing so in the convenience of my own house,” stated the 29-year-old, who lives in London. After an online search, he found a therapist whose profile matched his requirements and booked a chat session for the next day.
Remote, text-based counselling is growing in appeal in the UK. The medical professional app Babylon provides 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 signed up UK users (though not all are active). Talkspace, another online treatment platform, reports it has actually 500,000 registered users worldwide, with a lot of in the United States.
Online training advises therapists on everything from utilizing emojis to avoiding misconceptions. They also need to protect patients’ individual information– an issue that has actually caused controversy in the United States, where big online treatment platforms have come under the spotlight.
Buckley stated clients should examine services’ personal privacy policies before registering. “Not all online counselling websites use expertly trained therapists or abide by a principles policy, so ask your GP for a recommendation in the very first circumstances. As with all type of services and support, what works for one person may not work for another person,” he said.
Marc Bush, primary policy consultant at Young Minds, said that while online counselling services are valuable, “they should not replace in person treatment with an experienced professional. If a young person is having a hard time, we would encourage them to talk with their GP in the very first instance, or to contact an established service like The Mix, Childline or the Samaritans.”.
For Rackham, who has generalised stress and anxiety disorder, online counselling wasn’t the right fit. “I felt it was near impossible for the therapist to actually get a sense of the problems I was dealing with, as all they had to go from was my typed-out words. I believe I realised after that online session how important social interaction was.