Psychologists Learning How To Use Online Therapy

Are websites helping people cut the losses of suicide, depression, and drug addiction?

Experiencing mental illness? Consider using in-person therapy, but do it online. Psychologists are writing the books on how to create good online therapy for patients who don’t want to come to the doctor’s office, when computers are needed and sitting still long enough is unattractive, writes Alexander Schmitz. The book excerpted here comes from Psychology Today.

Can computerized therapy treat depression and anxiety? In a new article in the American Journal of Psychiatry, a panel of psychological experts examine a number of potential obstacles to online cognitive behavioral therapy. Along with the exciting information, the article also illustrates how online therapy can help people with mental health issues by providing easy access to the right therapist at the right time. The most important lesson from the study is a simple one: If you’re experiencing anxiety or depression, online or in-person therapy may make sense. In an increasingly information- and culture-laden world, therapy is becoming a more important part of the health care system. Thanks to the trend toward mental health “on demand,” psychologists and other mental health professionals are now able to offer online therapy to patients who want to access cognitive behavioral treatment, often in lieu of in-person counseling. In many ways, the study informs the large field of online behavioral medicine. The first question answered in the study was whether patients with anxiety and depression can benefit from online CBT. According to clinical psychologist Aruna Kala, PsyD, MD, both patients and therapists find difficulty in accessing the right therapists. Many therapists are not trained to provide online therapy, while many patients may not be willing to put in the hours required for an office visit. If these barriers could be addressed, however, patients could expect to benefit from the same type of therapy that they would get in a therapist’s office.

Can computerized therapy treat depression and anxiety? In a new article in the American Journal of Psychiatry, a panel of psychological experts examine a number of potential obstacles to online cognitive behavioral therapy. Along with the exciting information, the article also illustrates how online therapy can help people with mental health issues by providing easy access to the right therapist at the right time. The most important lesson from the study is a simple one: If you’re experiencing anxiety or depression, online or in-person therapy may make sense. In an increasingly information- and culture-laden world, therapy is becoming a more important part of the health care system. Thanks to the trend toward mental health “on demand,” psychologists and other mental health professionals are now able to offer online therapy to patients who want to access cognitive behavioral treatment, often in lieu of in-person counseling. In many ways, the study informs the large field of online behavioral medicine. The first question answered in the study was whether patients with anxiety and depression can benefit from online CBT. According to clinical psychologist Aruna Kala, PsyD, MD, both patients and therapists find difficulty in accessing the right therapists. Many therapists are not trained to provide online therapy, while many patients may not be willing to put in the hours required for an office visit. If these barriers could be addressed, however, patients could expect to benefit from the same type of therapy that they would get in a therapist’s office. Don’t deny people mental health. Psychologists are writing the books on how to create good online therapy for patients who don’t want to come to the doctor’s office, when computers are needed and sitting still long enough is unattractive, writes Alexander Schmitz. The book excerpted here comes from Psychology Today.

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