Confronted with signing up with a desperately long NHS waiting list…Kenyon Talk Space… “I simply felt that I could not wait any longer– I was encouraged and prepared to handle my problems and rather liked the idea of doing so in the comfort of my own house,” said the 29-year-old, who resides in London. After an online search, he discovered a therapist whose profile fit his requirements and scheduled a chat session for the next day.
Remote, text-based counselling is growing in popularity in the UK. The medical professional app Babylon offers 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 many in the United States.
Online training advises therapists on whatever from using emojis to preventing misinterpretations. They likewise need to protect patients’ individual information– an issue that has actually triggered controversy in the United States, where huge online therapy platforms have actually come under the spotlight.
Buckley stated patients need to inspect services’ privacy policies prior to signing up. “Not all online counselling websites utilize expertly trained therapists or abide by an ethics policy, so ask your GP for a recommendation in the first instance. As with all kinds of services and support, what works for a single person may not work for somebody else,” he stated.
Marc Bush, chief policy consultant at Young Minds, said that while online counselling services are important, “they should not change face-to-face treatment with a skilled specialist. If a young adult is struggling, we would encourage them to talk with their GP in the very first instance, or to get in touch with a recognized 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 difficult 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 vital social interaction was.