Telemental Health: The Viable Alternative to In-person Therapy

As the world becomes increasingly digital, more people are turning to telemental health therapy as a convenient and effective alternative to traditional in-person therapy.  While some may be skeptical about the effectiveness of teletherapy, the truth is it can be just as good, if not better, than face-to-face therapy in many cases. Let’s start by discussing three advantages of telemental health therapy versus in-person therapy and then move onto why telemental health therapy for children, youth and families can be as good or better than in-person therapy.

Accessibility: One of the biggest advantages of telemental health therapy is accessibility. By providing mental health services online, it eliminates the need for clients to physically travel to a therapist’s office. In addition, teletherapy removes barriers related to scheduling conflicts allowing you to book appointments that are convenient for you without having to worry about travel time or traffic.  Additionally, sessions can be scheduled outside of regular business hours making it easier for those with busy schedules to receive therapy. 

Flexibility: Teletherapy also provides greater flexibility in terms of the types of therapy available. Teletherapy has the potential to open new treatment options that were previously unavailable.  For instance, virtual reality therapy is a type of teletherapy that uses a virtual environment to simulate real world situations that trigger anxiety or phobias. Previous research has shown that virtual reality therapy can be an effective treatment for conditions such as trauma, phobias, and anxiety disorders.

Privacy: Another benefit of teletherapy is increased privacy.  Some people may feel uncomfortable discussing personal issues in a face-to-face setting or may not want to be seen entering or leaving a therapist’s office. Teletherapy can provide a more discreet way of seeking treatment, which can help reduce the stigma surrounding mental health.

Telemental Health for Children, Youth, and Families

With the advanced technology available today, children, youth and families can receive high-quality mental healthcare from the comfort of their homes.  Let’s start by considering why this is important for many children, youth, and families. 

  1. First, telemental health therapy provides greater access to care for those who live in remote or rural areas. Many face challenges accessing quality mental healthcare due to the lack of available resources in their communities. Telemental health therapy eliminates this barrier by enabling them to receive therapy from qualified mental health professionals while in the comfort of their homes.
  2. Second, telemental health therapy enables children to feel more comfortable and at ease during their sessions. Some children may feel anxious or nervous about attending in-person therapy sessions. Telemental health therapy allows them to receive care in a familiar environment, which can reduce anxiety and improve their overall mental well-being.
  3. Furthermore, telemental health therapy provides a level of flexibility that is not available with in-person therapy. Children, youth and their families can choose when and where to schedule their appointments, which makes it easier to balance their therapy with their other obligations, such as school or extracurricular activities.

Let’s Talk About Telemental Health Success!

Over the past several years, there has been a growing body of research conducted on the effectiveness of telemental health therapy for children and youth compared to in-person therapy. Studies have found tele mental health therapy can be just as effective as in-person therapy in treating a wide range of mental health conditions.  For example:

  1. Teletherapy was generally as effective as in-person therapy for a range of mental health conditions, including anxiety, depression, PTSD-trauma and behavior disorders in children and adolescents.
  2. Telehealth-based family therapy was an effective method for improving communication and reducing conflict among families.   
  3. Telehealth-based parenting interventions were effective for improving child behavior and reducing parental stress.  
Telemental health benefits

What Do Teletherapy and In-person Therapy Have in Common for Children, Youth and Families?

  1. First, building rapport and a therapeutic alliance with the young client and families is essential in both in-person and teletherapy settings. This involves creating a safe and supportive environment, actively listening to, and validating experiences and feelings while collaborating with the family to establish treatment goals and strategies.
  2. Second, teletherapy sessions, like in-person, can incorporate evidence-based interventions such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), which focuses on changing negative thoughts and behaviors and developing coping skills. For example, CBT, like other modalities, can be adapted to teletherapy by using visual aids, interactive games, or self-monitoring tools that can be shared remotely.
  3. Third, teletherapy can also address socioemotional needs that may affect the child’s mental health. For example, teletherapy sessions may involve social skills training, emotional regulation, or mindfulness exercises that promote self-awareness and relaxation.

In Conclusion:

HopeNation is committed to providing high-quality, personalized, and supportive mental health services to children, youth, and families.  Our team of experienced therapists are passionate about helping our clients achieve optimal mental wellness. We recognize that the world is constantly evolving, and with the advances in technology, telehealth has become a popular avenue for delivering mental health services. That’s why at HopeNation, we stay on top of the latest telehealth research and implementation methods to ensure that we can provide effective delivery of treatment to our clients.

While telehealth is an important avenue for delivering mental health services, we also recognize there are still plenty of opportunities for growth in the telemental health field when addressing and replicating the in-person experience.  This is why we remain committed to offering high-touch therapy and individual engagement in our telehealth services as we strive to bring hope and healing to our clients. Our approach is centered around fostering a supportive, compassionate, and empathetic environment that allows for open communication between our therapists and clients.  We aim to create a comfortable and safe space for clients to share their thoughts and feelings without fear of judgment.

We are dedicated to staying at the forefront of research and implementation of telemental health services to ensure that our clients receive the best possible care.

Contact us today and get started on the path towards hope and healing.

Written By: