Are you staying at home as much as possible to lower your risk of getting COVID-19?
Do you need mental health or relational counseling, but can’t make it to an in-person appointment?
Telehealth or online counseling is a fairly recent innovation. Telehealth allows the facilitation of health-related services to patients via live video conferencing. Thanks to modern technology, just about everyone in the U.S. has a smartphone or tablet capable of video chat. This ease of access to make video calls has revolutionized the health industry allowing clients to connect with their mental health counselors.
Using your computer or smartphone, you can consult with a mental health professional to receive ongoing care with your counselor without risking your physical health. Also, in addition to our video calls, all texts and e-mails are HIPAA compliant to assure you full confidentiality.
Telehealth appointments can help by removing the need to leave your home to attend an appointment.
The convenience of scheduling an online appointment with a simple phone call cannot be understated. For your appointment, no additional software needs to be downloaded on your computer. You simply click on a link from an e-mail automatically sent to you 48 hours before and once again 10 minutes before your appointment. You can do all of that without leaving your couch. If you have social anxiety or phobias that cause you to avoid social interactions or you are concerned about the COVID-19 outbreak, telehealth makes it easier for you to get the counseling that you need in the safety, privacy and confidentiality of your own home or office.
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Below are some of the benefits of Online Counseling that might help you make a more informed decision.
- Safety: In light of the COVID-19 virus our priorities change. Namely, our physical safety comes first. At the same time, the outbreak of the coronavirus and the anxiety that it can produce can aggravate the reasons why you reached out for counseling in the first place. As a result, online counseling has become a feasible option practically overnight. Still, it’s of the utmost importance that your confidentiality stays intact. This is why all communication in our online counseling is secure and HIPAA compliant. This includes online sessions, text and e-mails.
- Accessibility: Online counseling overcomes barriers that may preclude others from seeking counseling. For example, individuals residing in rural or remote areas where there are no counseling services can benefit from the accessibility of online counseling. Those that are physically disabled or unable to leave their home can also easily access such services with little inconvenience. Those that have visual and hearing impairments can also benefit from such services.
- Convenience: Online counseling is convenient. This style of counseling can take away the hassle of traveling to your appointments and the time it takes for the round trip. This also creates an opportunity for the counselor to extend their services to more clients as appointments and reach a larger geographical region. For those individuals who are ambivalent about counseling or who may be uncomfortable with traditional modes of counseling, online counseling can be more fitting. It may prove to be more suitable than to talk with someone face-to-face. For others, online counseling may be easier due to social phobias, agoraphobia or other anxiety disorders.
- Social stigma: Online counseling may also be effective in eliminating the social stigma associated with receiving face-to-face counseling. Online counseling allows access to such services in private without having to visit the counseling office. Counseling can take on a whole different image when executed by the client in their own home through the computer. It may also allow the client to feel less stigmatized without having to be seen by others in the waiting room, the administrative staff or any other person who just happens to be walking past at the time the client walks through the door. Because of this, online counseling clearly does offer the client a degree of anonymity that may reduce such social stigma and therefore prompt them to seek assistance when they might otherwise have hesitated.
- Anonymity: The absence of face-to-face contact can also prompt clients to communicate more openly without concerns for the bias of race, gender, age, size or physical appearance. This may lead to an increased level of honesty and therefore higher validity in the case of self-disclosure. The internet clearly offers a level of anonymity that is perceived by many users as non-threatening.