Faced with joining a desperately long NHS waiting list…Betterhelp Therapy Phelps… “I simply felt that I could not wait any longer– I was inspired and prepared to deal with my issues and quite liked the concept of doing so in the comfort of my own home,” stated the 29-year-old, who lives in London. After an online search, he discovered a therapist whose profile fit his needs and booked a chat session for the next day.
Remote, text-based counselling is growing in popularity in the UK. The physician app Babylon provides treatment 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 actually 500,000 registered users worldwide, with most in the US.
Online training encourages therapists on whatever from utilizing emojis to avoiding misinterpretations. They also need to secure clients’ personal information– a concern that has caused controversy in the US, where huge online therapy platforms have come under the spotlight.
Buckley stated patients should check services’ personal privacy policies prior to registering. “Not all online counselling websites use professionally trained therapists or adhere to an ethics policy, so ask your GP for a recommendation in the first circumstances. Just like all kinds of services and support, what works for a single person might not work for someone else,” he stated.
Marc Bush, chief policy advisor at Young Minds, stated that while online counselling services are valuable, “they shouldn’t replace in person treatment with a qualified professional. If a young person is struggling, we would motivate them to talk with their GP in the first instance, or to get in touch with a recognized service like The Mix, Childline or the Samaritans.”.
For Rackham, who has actually generalised anxiety condition, online counselling wasn’t the right fit. “I felt it was near impossible for the therapist to really get a sense of the problems I was dealing with, as all they needed to go from was my typed-out words. I believe I understood after that online session how vital interpersonal interaction was.