And drawing back from my own (reasonably subtle) problems for a moment. Nisim Cohen Betterhelp…could e-counselling be the answer to the mental health issues escalating among under-30s? With cuts to psychological health services truly beginning to bite, digitised treatment could be simply the ticket for young people who already filter almost every aspect of their lives– pals, work, sex, entertainment– through a screen.
Not everyone is completely convinced that moving mental healthcare online is the method forward. “For me, what works in treatment is when you fulfill someone face-to-face, in the exact same room,” says London-based psychotherapist Sandra Tapie. “You get to know not only what it’s like to speak to the person, but how it feels to be in a space with them. Utilizing Skype is the next best thing: it’s ‘good enough’, but it does not create the closeness, the intimacy, that really gets individuals to open and check out things.”
” I have actually 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 actually important that individuals who participate in it are aware that it’s a various experience from being in the space with someone, speaking face-to-face.”
” In terms of accessibility, it’s an excellent start and definitely much better than nothing. It’ll hopefully lead them to eventually revealing up in the space.
In cases of mild depression, the NHS is now directing some patients towards online programmes rather than in person counselling, a phenomenon that worries Dr Balick.