And pulling back from my own (reasonably low-key) concerns for a moment. Betterhelp Illustration…could e-counselling be the answer to the mental health concerns intensifying among under-30s? With cuts to psychological health services actually starting to bite, digitised therapy could be just the ticket for young people who already filter almost every aspect of their lives– good friends, work, sex, home entertainment– through a screen.
Not everybody is totally convinced that shifting psychological health care online is the way forward. “You get to know not just what it’s like to talk to the individual, but how it feels to be in a room with them.
” I’ve carried out some research into Skype counselling,” says London-based psychotherapist Dr Aaron Balick, “and it’s not the ‘functional equivalent’ of standard counselling; it’s simply not quite the exact same thing. It’s truly important that individuals who engage in it are aware that it’s a different experience from being in the room with somebody, speaking in person.”
” In terms of ease of access, it’s an excellent start and certainly better than absolutely nothing. It’ll hopefully lead them to eventually showing up in the room.
In cases of mild depression, the NHS is now directing some clients towards online programs instead of face-to-face counselling, a phenomenon that worries Dr Balick.