Mental health issues among the millennials increased in a decade as some of these become harder to cure through medication. Hence, the demand for therapy services also increases. Nowadays, people widely accept therapy as an alternative cure not only for mental health illnesses but also for physical intervention and treatment. A new form of therapy service bloomed as people seek these services. Online therapy services have appeared alongside our technological advancements. In this type of therapy, an online therapist can attend to your needs through your computer.
Our world continues to digitize our practices. With these constant changes, we lose and gain factors that may both improve or decrease the quality of desired outcomes. This case is the same for online and offline therapy services. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. To give you an idea for each, here are some of their prominent advantages and disadvantages.
Offline Therapy Services
Offline therapy services are our traditional set-up where a patient visits the clinic or office of a therapist. Here, there is a face-to-face interaction and at times, physical support and assistance. Each phase of the treatment is conducted regularly held in the therapist’s office.
- You Build A Comfortable Environment
The fact that the patient and therapist are face-to-face enables the therapist to build an emotional rapport. Through this, you get to build a comfortable relationship with your patient. They are more likely to be open about their issues and problems.
- Physical Assistance And Support
Physical assistance and support are essential for physical therapists. It becomes possible to obtain a proper diagnosis of the patient’s condition if they are there with them. Also, this is a necessity for those undergoing physical intervention. By being with their patient, the therapist can conduct regular check-ups. Doing so allows them to create the most suitable treatment plan for their patient.
- All Around Treatment
Specific treatments help you physically, emotionally, and mentally. More options are available through offline therapy. The therapist can visually check for both your internal and external condition. The process is almost like “hitting two birds with one stone.”
- Lack Of Immediate Responses
You first need to check the schedule of a therapist in your area. There are times when they are inaccessible or unavailable. If you are looking to address your mental health issue as soon as possible, this may not be the service you need.
- Difficult For Certain Patients
Some patients remain quiet during the sessions. They are unwilling to cooperate or talk to the therapist. This conduct is the case for those struggling with social anxiety or is merely embarrassed to talk about their problems.
Online Therapy Services
This set-up involves the provisioned use of the internet. It typically comes in the forms of email, video conferences, or real-time chat. This type of service generally is for mental health issues and nutritional therapy.
“Bipolar I includes very clear manic episodes that are hard to miss, whereas bipolar II doesn’t necessarily have that.” – says Sally Winston, PsyD.
There are times when therapists are unavailable. Due to this, you may end up with an expensive one. Online therapists, on the other hand, are a cheaper alternative. You can also cut off expenses from traveling to their offices.
- Logistical Availability
Some mental health issues hinder you from going out, and it makes it harder for you to treat your condition. Therefore, some prefer online therapy where you can get help in the comfort of your home especially if you are far from any available therapy services in your area.
Some online therapy services allow their patients to remain anonymous. Instead of asking their patient’s name, they will only ask for their method of payment and email. The patient can prevent their friends and family from knowing that they are undergoing therapy.
“While bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder (BPD) might sound similar at first, aside from a few symptoms the two have in common—impulsivity, promiscuity, and rage—the conditions are actually very different.” – Kathleen Cairns, PsyD
- Limited To Mental Health Issues
This form of therapy works best for patients undergoing anxiety or depression. It also offers advice on stress management, career, and relationships issues. Those in need of physical intervention may not find the treatment they need through words they only hear or read. Also, different therapy approaches including Art Therapy, Music Therapy, or Eye Movement Edenization and Reprocessing Therapy are almost impossible to conduct.
- Restrictions In Interactions
The relationship between patient and therapist is built on trust. With the lack of specific interactions, it may be hard for the therapist to see improvements or changes in patients. Pieces of advice may not always work out for the best especially when you only see improvement through words. It is for the case of therapies done through real-time chat or email.
Each service has its advantages and disadvantages. Being aware and informed of its pros and cons allows you to choose the most suitable one. Hopefully, this article gave you a better insight into traditional and online therapy.
“Depression treatment that works for one person, however, may not work for another. That’s because depression varies from one person to the next – in severity and type.” – Beth Esposito, MS, LPCC-S, LSW