Why Start Therapy Now?
A recent poll conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 45% of adults in the United States say the pandemic has negatively impacted their mental health. As a therapist, public mental health concerns influence my professional work and my personal life. I’ve heard many friends and family members express their struggles, and then state that they are avoiding starting therapy now because they prefer meeting with a therapist face-to-face. I understand and empathize with this since I currently miss the experience of providing in-person services.
I’ve always been outspoken when voicing my opinions about telehealth and online therapy services. There are individuals who would greatly benefit from therapeutic support who are suffering silently in hopes that they’ll be able to repair post-pandemic, even though there is no definitive end in sight.
I am pro-telehealth, and always have been, presuming the potential client is appropriate for this method of service. Since beginning in private practice, I’ve had many clients participate in and benefit from online therapy services. I conduct the sessions in the same exact way that I would conduct an in-person session. I ask questions, provide support, use techniques to help clients gain insight, and through video technology, I observe behaviors/body language/patterns the same way I would at an in-person session.
Online therapy has been a great option for my clients who I would typically see via in-person therapy. It’s extremely useful when the client wants to come into therapy, but other circumstances get in the way. It’s natural for busy weeks to get the best of us at times, and that’s often when we need services the most. I feel like it’s imperative to be available to our clients when unpredictable circumstances pop up; if the babysitter cancels, busy schedules leave little time for self-care, or they work later shifts and don’t have the ability to make it in for a session.
National Public Radio shared an article entitled, “How to Get Therapy When You Can’t Leave the House”, which provides useful advice. Here are some questions to consider when thinking about getting therapy right now:
1. Do you think that you could benefit from participating in mental health services right now?
2. Are there short or long term results that can happen if you don’t address current issues going on in your life?
3. Are there any areas of your life that are impacted by stress, anxiety, or other related mental health symptoms? (This may be work, relationships, finances, parenting, or anything hindering your routine/functioning.)
4. Are old issues resurfacing or becoming more noticeable with the current circumstances?
5. Are you having a hard time adjusting to recent circumstances?
6. Are you feeling socially disconnected or isolated?
7. Could you benefit from learning new strategies to help adapt to the new circumstances?
8. Are you experiencing discomfort or anxiety because of factors that increase your vulnerability to COVID-19? (Elderly population, pre-existing conditions, or pregnancy.)
9. Are you experiencing any conflict within your home or in your personal relationships that’s impacting your mental health negatively?
10. Are you noticing any symptom changes related to mental health or current mental health diagnoses?
11. Are you being physically impacted by stress or other emotions?
If you feel your mental health deteriorating, don’t try to wait until the pandemic is over to deal with your issues. Council for Relationships’ Online Therapy is an effective alternative to in-person therapy, and you are able to see the same therapist throughout treatment. Whether you’re starting therapy for the first time, returning to therapy, or continuing regular sessions, utilize online therapy to get the support you need. You can connect with the Client Care team over the phone at (215) 382-6680 ext. 1.