Faced with signing up with a frantically long NHS waiting list…Invest In Betterhelp… “I simply felt that I couldn’t wait any longer– I was encouraged and ready to deal with my concerns and quite liked the concept of doing so in the convenience of my own house,” said the 29-year-old, who resides in London. After an online search, he found a therapist whose profile matched his needs and scheduled a chat session for the next day.
Remote, text-based counselling is growing in popularity in the UK. The physician app Babylon offers treatment to 150,000 active users, while PlusGuidance, an online counselling service, has 10,000 users. The US-based service BetterHelp likewise has 150,000 signed up 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 United States.
Online training advises therapists on everything from utilizing emojis to avoiding misinterpretations. They likewise require to safeguard clients’ individual data– an issue that has actually caused debate in the United States, where huge online therapy platforms have come under the spotlight.
Buckley said patients need to inspect services’ personal privacy policies before registering. “Not all online counselling websites use professionally trained therapists or stick to a principles policy, so ask your GP for a recommendation in the first instance. Similar to all kinds of services and support, what works for someone might not work for somebody else,” he stated.
Marc Bush, chief policy adviser at Young Minds, stated that while online counselling services are valuable, “they should not replace face-to-face therapy with a skilled expert. If a young adult is struggling, we would motivate them to speak to their GP in the first instance, or to call an established service like The Mix, Childline or the Samaritans.”.
For Rackham, who has generalised stress and anxiety disorder, online counselling wasn’t the best fit. “I felt it was near difficult for the therapist to really get a sense of the problems I was handling, as all they had to go from was my typed-out words. I think I understood after that online session how essential social interaction was.