Before the pandemic, virtual counseling and health services weren’t as widely available as they became once things began to close down. We were suddenly in a world that relied on digital tools that helped us social distance while remaining connected. The closures and quarantines created a more widespread need for telemental health services, as the prevalence of mental health issues, such as depression and anxiety, increased.
Telehealth and telemental health services are health and mental health services that are provided on a digital platform. Telemental health refers specifically to mental health services. These digital visits are very different from regular visits, but the value is just the same, if not greater, than in-person in many ways.
What Does Telemental Health Consist Of?
Telemental health services are accessed by using a digital platform. At Lisa Rogers Counseling we use a HIPPA approved digital video platform called Doxyne. Video communication apps allow you to see your counselor, regardless of the location you are in.
You don’t need anything fancy to attend a telemental health appointment. All you need is a phone or other internet device, such as a computer or tablet.
During your appointment, you may have the chance to:
- Talk to your counselor directly, live, over a digital platform.
- Receive or send messages to your counselor over a live chat, secure instant messaging, email, and secure file exchange.
- Use remote patient monitoring. This service is used so your counselor can monitor you at home without having to be present. Different devices can be used to gather vitals and other information.
What Kinds of Care Can You Receive with Telemental Health?
Telehealth itself is a broad category of services, but telemental health focuses solely on your mental health. There is a wide variety of services you can receive. Some of these services include:
- Online Counseling
- Supplemental Support Services
- Self-Directed Services, such as online cognitive behavioral therapy
These services can help you manage every part of your mental health, from therapy to medications. Your therapist may ask you to keep track of your symptoms and report them back.
Therapists can also send you information over digital platforms, including:
- Reminder notifications for you to do specific tasks such as taking medications.
- Encouragement for you to stick with your treatment plan.
- Suggestions for improving your diet, exercise, and stress management.
- Detailed instructions on how to follow your care plan at home.
Your therapist or counselor can help you manage any of your mental healthcare concerns, including depression, anxiety, other mental health disorders, couple and marriage issues, substance abuse and addiction, and so much more via telemental health services.
What Are the Benefits of Telemental Health Services?
In the past, telehealth and telemental health services might have seemed like a lesser option, but the pandemic bringing it about as a more ubiquitous tool allowed countless people to learn the benefits they didn’t know the services had. Some of these benefits include:
- Limiting physical contact and reducing everyone’s exposure to COVID-19.
- Virtual visits help address mental health issues no matter where patients are and from the comfort of their own homes.
- Staying home decreases travel in bad weather, time away from work, and the need for child care.
- Using virtual healthcare tools can decrease wait times to see a therapist and expand the range of access to specialists who are further away.
- Services can be easier to access if you have issues leaving your home.
- Services are usually more flexible than in-person visits.
- Internet games are sometimes used as part of treatment plans.
Studies have shown that telemental health care is beneficial. It helps fill existing gaps, even gaps that were present before the pandemic, especially for people who are unable to leave their house or travel to a provider.
Support For You, Wherever You Are
At Lisa Rogers Counseling, I offer a wide range of therapy and mental health services for several areas. You are not alone in your struggle and neither are your loved ones. Reach out today to make an appointment.
I provide services in:
- Adult Therapy: Individual, Group, Family and Couples Therapy.
- Child Therapy: Individual, Group and Family TherapyAdolescent Therapy: Individual, group, and family therapy.
Since 1993, I have been providing a combination of all my years of training tailoring specific treatments based on the individual needs and challenges of my patients, facilitating healing. I make every effort to accommodate the busy schedules of my patients by offering evenings, weekend appointments and Telemental Health (Online Counseling-Virtual/Video Conference and Phone Sessions) offered in the following states I am licensed in: New York, California, Illinois, Texas, New Jersey, Florida, and Vermont.