Are you choosing to venture out now that we are in a different phase of the pandemic? Do you find yourself in a quandary, weighing your desire to recapture the freedom of going out as you used to, against continuing fears about your safety? What do you feel comfortable trying?
If you are struggling with life transition issues and difficult decisions, self-esteem issues, or suffering from feelings of anxiety, loss, isolation and fear, choosing to start or resume in-person therapy sessions may be a step you are not ready to take. How can you get the help you really need without feeling at risk? The answer lies in Telemental Health, therapy sessions with your counselor from the safety and security of your home via video or phone sessions.
Women Reshaping Lives now offers you a choice of either in-person sessions or distance therapy, depending on your needs and comfort level. This page will introduce you to what Telemental Health sessions are like, how they might differ from in-person meetings and how they are the same.
1. What Is Telemental Health?
Sometimes known as Distance Therapy, Telemental Health uses the technology of video or phone to enable you to meet with your counselor in your home or another safe, secure location to access your therapy session remotely, rather than in-person in your therapist’s office.
2. Who Is Telemental Health For?
Telemental Health is for those who may not feel comfortable coming to a therapist’s office due to heightened risk factors such as autoimmune deficiencies or health conditions that might make in-person sessions not viable during the current pandemic. In addition, clients from greater geographic distances can work with their counselor of choice without the barrier of travel concerns.
3. How Do Telemental Health Sessions Work?
For Distance Therapy, you would decide with your counselor whether you would like to connect by video or phone. Your counselor will let you know what you will need for the session. Here are the basics that would be essential for your video or phone meeting:
- A private, safe space for your session, one where you will not be interrupted.
- If it is a video session, you will need a working computer which will allow you to access the HIPPA compliant platform for the session. Included on this page is a list of Telemental How – To’s to tell you how this works.
- If it is a phone session, you will need a working mobile phone or landline phone to call your counselor.
- You and your counselor will discuss who will initiate the connection, what to do if the connection gets interrupted, and any other tips to make the call go successfully.
- Your counselor will discuss all necessary informed consent and emergency contacts that apply specifically to Telemental Health.
- The session will last the same standard 50 minutes as in an in-person session. Session fees are also the same as for in-person sessions.
4. Benefits of Telemental Health
Distance and travel time are no longer a barrier for you working with the therapist of your choice. You will have greater flexibility in scheduling your sessions when you do not have to plan on travel time. Unexpected traffic or weather delays will not be an issue and you can come into your session regularly and on-time. This is helpful in deepening your commitment to the therapy process.
Telehealth How – To’s
Before Your Session Starts:
- Make sure you have a private, safe space to be in where you won’t be disturbed or heard. This may be in a bedroom, home office or basement.
- If you live with others, you will need to make sure family members don’t disturb you, including children and pets.
- In most cases you will need a laptop or desktop computer with a video camera and microphone (these are built in to most modern computers). You may be able to use telehealth with a smartphone or iPad.
- Using earphones/buds plugged into your computer or phone helps maintain privacy and improves sound. Your counselor will also be using earphones for privacy and better sound.
- Make sure all unnecessary web-browsers are closed and no one else in your home is using the wifi for streaming.
- Be comfortable! Find a cozy position, perhaps with pillows or a throw blanket. Have a cup of tea, coffee or water to sip. Create a healing and soothing environment for yourself that will enhance the work you do with your counselor.
Research has shown that the benefits of Telemental Health is comparable to in-person services. Women Reshaping Lives is committed to offering both Distance and In-Person Sessions to meet our clients needs. I continue to believe that the most important key to your healing, learning and growth through the counseling process is rooted in the relationship you build with your therapist. A counselor-client bond can be successfully established through either Distance or In-Person meetings. Find the right fit and then choose which manner of counseling works for you. Women Reshaping Lives offers clients the flexibility to find their right fit of therapy through either Distance or In-Person counseling.
I offer a free consult via phone or video for us to meet and discuss how I can help you.
I look forward to hearing from you!