And pulling back from my own (fairly subtle) concerns for a moment. Betterhelp Brentwood…could e-counselling be the answer to the mental health issues intensifying amongst under-30s? With cuts to psychological health services actually beginning to bite, digitised treatment could be simply the ticket for young adults who already filter almost every aspect of their lives– pals, work, sex, home entertainment– through a screen.
Not everybody is completely persuaded that moving psychological health care online is the way forward. “You get to know not only what it’s like to talk to the person, but how it feels to be in a space with them.
” I’ve carried out some research into Skype counselling,” says London-based psychotherapist Dr Aaron Balick, “and it’s not the ‘practical equivalent’ of conventional counselling; it’s simply not quite the very same thing. It’s really essential that individuals who engage in it understand that it’s a different experience from being in the space with somebody, speaking in person.”
” In terms of ease of access, it’s a great start and definitely much better than nothing. It’ll ideally lead them to eventually revealing up in the room.
In cases of mild depression, the NHS is now directing some patients towards online programmes rather than face-to-face counselling, a phenomenon that worries Dr Balick.