A Wonderful Option for Everyone
Online counseling has started to come into its own as an accepted way to deliver mental health and substance abuse services. Vermont, where I am licensed, now requires insurance companies to pay for telemedicine of both medical and mental health services. Research has shown that online counseling is at least as effective as face-to face therapy. There are several advantages to online counseling that make it a viable option for someone seeking services. For one, it is perfect for anyone who for whatever reason has difficulty making it to a therapist's office--whether from living in a remote location, lack of transportation, or conditions such as agoraphobia, getting a DUI, or being shut in by a medical condition. Secondly, it is efficient and flexible in terms of time and space. It is very convenient both for the clinician and the patient to stay at home and have a session at times convenient to both. Finally, for some who have experienced interpersonal trauma, there is a safety factor in the very physical remoteness of the method, while affording the opportunity to interact and connect in a very comfortable way.