Faced with signing up with a frantically long NHS waiting list…Therapists Near Me Specializing In Social Skills, Anxiety, Eating Disorders… “I just felt that I couldn’t wait any longer– I was motivated and prepared to handle my problems and rather liked the idea of doing so in the comfort of my own home,” stated the 29-year-old, who lives in London. After an online search, he found a therapist whose profile suited his requirements and reserved 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 likewise 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 United States.
Online training encourages therapists on everything from using emojis to avoiding misinterpretations. They also need to protect clients’ individual information– an issue that has caused debate in the United States, where big online therapy platforms have come under the spotlight.
Buckley stated patients need to inspect services’ personal privacy policies before signing up. “Not all online counselling websites use professionally trained therapists or follow an ethics policy, so ask your GP for a recommendation in the first instance. Just like all sort of services and support, what works for a single person may not work for another person,” he said.
Marc Bush, primary policy advisor at Young Minds, said that while online counselling services are valuable, “they should not replace face-to-face therapy with a qualified specialist. If a young adult is struggling, we would motivate them to speak to their GP in the very first circumstances, or to contact an established service like The Mix, Childline or the Samaritans.”.
For Rackham, who has actually generalised stress and anxiety condition, online counselling wasn’t the ideal fit. “I felt it was near difficult for the therapist to truly get a sense of the problems I was handling, 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.