Should E-Counseling be Considered a Real Alternative for Mental Health Help?


Many people have become aware of a relatively new form of counseling that is available nowadays. Thanks to the advent of computer technology and the internet, we can now seek online counseling, or e-counseling, without having to leave the comfort of our home.

Many people, oftentimes those who have been raised with more traditional methods of counseling, are skeptical of the benefits of e-counseling. However, it is considered by many to be a viable and effective method of therapy. Today we’ll talk about e-counseling, so you can decide whether you think it’s the right method of therapy for you.

What is E-Counseling?

E-counseling, or online counseling, is quickly becoming a more popular model for therapeutic treatment. It’s particularly popular among youth, who have been raised with technologies such as cell phones, computer, and the internet.

There have been a number of studies done on other benefits of e-counseling that have revealed it to be quite an effective form of treatment. Given that you are getting your treatment from a qualified instructor, there is no reason that you shouldn’t receive the same benefits from online counseling as you would from regular counseling.

There are a number of ways that one can participate in e-counseling:


  • Online, with webcam. This is the closest way that one can participate in a face-to-face therapeutic session on their computer. By using webcams, a therapist can communicate directly to a patient. By seeing facial expressions and hand gestures, they can communicate quite well.


  • Online, without webcam. There are several ways that this can be done. One of the ways is through instant messaging. Patients may confer directly with a counselor or become a part of a chat room in which many people interact. You can also have online phone calls.
  • By phone. There is some debate as to whether or not this is considered true e-counseling. Regardless, receiving counseling over the phone is a viable option for those without proper access to the internet.



Benefits of E-Counseling

There are a number of benefits attributed to e-counseling, and many reasons why someone might prefer this type of counseling over more traditional methods. Here are the most popular reasons that some people decide to take part in e-counseling:


  • It’s accessible. Some people simply aren’t able to get themselves out to a counselor’s office every week. Using the internet makes it possible to receive these benefits without having to leave their home.


  • It’s flexible. While it’s important to make sure that you’re present for your sessions, you don’t necessarily need to build your whole week’s schedule around your counseling sessions. Online counseling is generally much easier to navigate with and it’s easier to change dates and times than it would be otherwise.
  • There’s no stigma. Some people are embarrassed to be receiving counseling and don’t want their families or friends to find out. E-counseling can help to prevent this stigma from reaching the patient.
  • It’s affordable. Some more traditional counseling methods are often considered to be quite expensive. Fortunately, online counseling is generally much cheaper. That said, it’s important to make sure that you balance the price of your treatment with the quality. Some online counselors are not as qualified as they claim to be.



In Conclusion

There are a number of reasons that some people find e-counseling to be more practical than traditional therapeutic practices. Hopefully after reading this article, you’re better able to decide whether or not e-counseling is a good fit for you.


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