Since the pandemic started in March 2020, the acceptance of online therapy & teletherapy as a viable care option has grown exponentially.
Currently, I see my clients via phone or zoom. Once it is deemed safe, I look forward to seeing my clients back in my Valencia Street office.
COVID-19 and the mental health crisis
Much of the attention surrounding COVID-19 has focused on the physical threat posed by the virus. It is certainly an issue for those at higher risk, including the elderly and anyone with underlying health conditions.
However, we cannot ignore the rise in mental health problems that many have experienced during lockdown. Social isolation, a constant flow of negative news, the loss of loved ones, and the current social unrest have led to increased levels of stress, anxiety, and depression for many. They have also led to a rise in alcohol and substance abuse as a way to escape.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 40% of U.S. adults reported struggling with mental health or substance abuse. As of late June: 31% reported increased symptoms of anxiety and depression, 13% started or increased substance use, and 11% considered suicide, which is an alarming statistic.
Mental health is a serious crisis that we cannot ignore. Unfortunately, the current social distancing mandates often make it difficult to seek individual or group therapy. You may be afraid to visit a therapist’s office even if restrictions have lifted.
Fortunately, we now have the technology and experience to offer safe and effective therapy solutions.
Online therapy works very much like a regular session, except you are not in the same room as the psychologist. We use the latest technology and specialized platforms to connect with patients in a safe and secure environment. All HIPAA privacy rules are strictly enforced.
Online therapy can also be surprisingly intimate, even without the usual “face-to-face” interaction. In fact, it may be even more intimate since your therapist is afforded a real-time glimpse into your life in a way that could never be fully revealed in an office setting.
Studies cited by the Telemental Health Institute indicate “that telemental health is equivalent to face-to-face care in various settings and an acceptable alternative.”
1. Increased access flexibility with scheduling
Since everything is done online, you can schedule sessions that fit your life. You can schedule therapy around your work schedule, family obligations, or caring for a loved one. The convenience and flexibility are ideal for making therapy a comfortable part of your routine.
2. More consistent therapy
Traffic, bad weather, and illness are just a few reasons why patients miss therapy sessions. Online therapy presents a solution to these hurdles, allowing clients to continue care on a more consistent basis and increasing their chances of improvement.
3. More frequent sessions
Because there are fewer issues with travel, taking time off work, and juggling schedules, clients can schedule more frequent sessions if the need arises.
4. Increased progress
Due to the ability to schedule more sessions, you may start to feel better faster. You do not have to wait a week or two between appointments.
5. More comfortable for clients
Some patients like that they can experience a session in the comfort of the environment of their choosing, whether it’s the living room couch or the nearby park bench.
6. Most Safety without sacrificing care
The COVID pandemic and fear of being in public settings has caused millions of Americans to avoid in-person care. Online therapy lets you practice social distancing – protecting your physical health without sacrificing or limiting your mental health care.
1197 Valencia Street, SF, CA, 94110