And drawing back from my own (fairly low-key) concerns for a moment. Better Help Stock Merger…could e-counselling be the answer to the mental health issues escalating amongst under-30s? With cuts to psychological health services really beginning to bite, digitised therapy could be simply the ticket for young people who currently filter nearly every element of their lives– friends, work, sex, home entertainment– through a screen.
Not everybody is completely convinced that moving psychological healthcare online is the method forward. “For me, what works in treatment is when you meet someone in person, in the same space,” states London-based psychotherapist Sandra Tapie. “You learn more about not just what it resembles to speak to the individual, but how it feels to be in a room with them. Using Skype is the next best thing: it’s ‘sufficient’, however it does not create the nearness, the intimacy, that really gets people to open and explore things.”
” I’ve carried out some research into Skype counselling,” says London-based psychotherapist Dr Aaron Balick, “and it’s not the ‘practical equivalent’ of traditional counselling; it’s simply not quite the exact same thing. It’s really essential that individuals who take part in it are aware that it’s a various experience from being in the room with somebody, speaking face-to-face.”
” In terms of ease of access, it’s an excellent start and certainly better than nothing. It’ll hopefully lead them to ultimately revealing up in the space.
In cases of mild depression, the NHS is now directing some clients towards online programmes instead of in person counselling, a phenomenon that concerns Dr Balick.