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The Pros and Cons of Teletherapy: What You Should Know About Remote Therapy

Updated: Mar 15

By Cassandra Goar MA, LPC, NCC

March 14, 2024

A man waving to a person on his computer screen
Teletherapy

In recent years, virtual therapy, also known as teletherapy, has emerged as a convenient and effective alternative to traditional in-person therapy. Despite its growing popularity, some individuals still harbor reservations about the efficacy and feasibility of receiving therapy remotely. However, as an EMDR trained therapist, I've witnessed firsthand the remarkable benefits of virtual therapy, particularly in addressing trauma, stress responses, depression, and anxiety. In this blog, we'll delve into why you shouldn't be afraid of virtual therapy and explore its numerous advantages, including expanded access to licensed therapists, enhanced convenience, and comparable effectiveness to in-person therapy. Additionally, I will address the downsides to teletherapy.


Let's now dive into the pros and cons of teletherapy!


Expanded Access to Licensed Therapists

 

One of the most significant advantages of virtual therapy is the ability to connect with a licensed therapist regardless of geographical constraints. Unlike traditional therapy, where your options may be limited to professionals within your immediate vicinity, virtual therapy opens up a vast network of therapists licensed in your state. This means you have the freedom to choose a therapist who aligns with your specific needs, preferences, and therapeutic approach, without being restricted by geographical boundaries.

 

For individuals seeking specialized treatments such as EMDR therapy, virtual sessions offer access to trained professionals like myself, regardless of whether you reside in a remote area or a bustling city. This accessibility ensures that you can receive high-quality care tailored to your unique circumstances and challenges.

 

Plus, the therapeutic relationship is shown to be THE MOST – yes, that’s right, the MOST – important aspect of effective therapy. So, you need to be sure you connect well with the therapist to get the most out of your therapeutic journey. Having greater access to more therapists for this reason is such a huge benefit.

 

Enhanced Convenience and Comfort

 

Engaging in therapy from the comfort of your own home is another compelling reason to consider virtual sessions. The convenience of virtual therapy eliminates the need for commuting to a therapist's office, saving you valuable time and reducing logistical hurdles. Whether you're juggling a busy schedule, dealing with mobility issues, or simply prefer the comfort and privacy of your own space, virtual therapy provides a flexible and accessible solution.

 

Moreover, the comfort of familiar surroundings can foster a sense of relaxation and openness during therapy sessions. Without the stress of navigating traffic or encountering acquaintances at a therapist's office, you're free to focus entirely on your therapeutic journey and self-discovery.

 

Privacy and Confidentiality

 

Privacy concerns often deter individuals from seeking therapy, particularly in small communities where running into someone you know at a therapist's office can be a possible source of discomfort (though I think everyone should do therapy so there is no need to be embarrassed about it!). With virtual therapy, privacy and confidentiality are prioritized, as sessions take place in a secure online environment. You can rest assured that your personal information and therapeutic discussions remain confidential, without the risk of encountering familiar faces of friends or acquaintances outside of your virtual session. And keep in mind that here at Re-Emerge Counseling, teletherapy sessions are conducted using a HIPAA compliant video platform so sessions are sure to be private and confidential.

 

Comparable Effectiveness to In-Person Therapy

 

One common misconception about virtual therapy is that it may not be as effective as traditional in-person therapy. However, numerous studies have demonstrated the efficacy of remote therapy across various mental health conditions, including depression, anxiety, trauma, and relationship issues. In fact, research indicates that virtual therapy yields comparable outcomes to face-to-face sessions, with many clients reporting high levels of satisfaction and symptom improvement.

 

As an EMDR trained therapist, I've witnessed remarkable transformations in clients' trauma and stress responses through virtual EMDR sessions. I offer EMDR teletherapy in Colorado and it has proven to be a powerful tool for processing traumatic experiences and fostering healing, even in the absence of physical proximity.

 

Specialized Teletherapy Services

 

Virtual therapy offers a diverse range of specialized services tailored to address specific mental health concerns. Whether you're struggling with self-esteem and body image issues, navigating relationship challenges, or seeking support for anxiety and depression, remote therapy provides targeted interventions to promote healing and growth.

 

At Re-Emerge Counseling, I specialize in providing effective teletherapy for a wide range of issues, including grief, self-esteem, body image concerns, anxiety, depression, trauma, general life stress, and relationship issues. Virtual sessions are designed to empower clients to overcome obstacles, build self-compassion, and cultivate a greater sense of well-being, all from the comfort and convenience of their own homes.

 

The Cons of Teletherapy

 

While the benefits of teletherapy are abundant, it's crucial to acknowledge some potential downsides as well. Technology can sometimes be unreliable, leading to connectivity issues or disruptions during sessions. However, it's worth noting that these occasional hiccups are often outweighed by the convenience and accessibility of virtual therapy. Consider the alternative of driving to in-person sessions, especially in regions like Colorado where unpredictable weather patterns can make commuting challenging, particularly in winter and spring months. The peace of mind that comes from knowing you can attend therapy from the comfort of your own home, regardless of weather conditions, is invaluable.

 

Additionally, some individuals may miss the "in-person" feel of traditional therapy sessions and the physical presence of their therapist. While it's true that virtual therapy may lack certain tactile and sensory elements, skilled therapists can still forge meaningful connections and foster deep emotional engagement with their clients, even through a computer screen. In my own practice, I've witnessed the profound impact of teletherapy, with clients experiencing transformative breakthroughs and profound moments of insight, despite the physical distance. Believe it or not, our energies can be felt through the monitor.

 

Furthermore, the absence of a physical therapy room may create a sense of disconnection or lack of containment for some clients. The therapeutic space typically provides a sacred container for processing emotions and sharing vulnerable experiences. To address this, I encourage all clients to establish rituals around their teletherapy sessions, such as setting aside a few minutes before and after each session for reflection, grounding exercises, or self-care practices. By creating intentional rituals, clients can cultivate a sense of sacredness and containment in their virtual therapy experience, enhancing the therapeutic process and promoting emotional well-being.

 

Overall, the pros outweigh the cons when it comes to teletherapy. While there are a few limitations to teletherapy that you’ll want to be aware of, teletherapy is such a positive option for the majority of folks who are really looking to explore the ultimate act of self-care – THERAPY! Additionally, some of these downsides, or hurdles, if you will, are actually just our own limiting beliefs and mindsets about teletherapy that gets in the way. So, if you're interested in exploring virtual EMDR therapy or other specialized teletherapy services I provide, don't hesitate to reach out to me at https://www.re-emergecounseling.com. I’m here to support you on your journey towards healing and growth.

 

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