Therapy is a fantastic tool for anyone who faces mental health struggles or wants a neutral opinion on coping with challenging situations. Teletherapy is a popular option that became especially prominent during the COVID-19 pandemic. Clients enjoy its convenience and have a large pool of therapists to choose from.
If you want to try teletherapy but are concerned about finding the right counselor, here are four tips that can help.
Isolate Your Needs
Just as medical doctors have specialties, so do mental health professionals. Therapists focus their education on helping people struggling with anxiety, depression, addiction, marriage issues and many other areas where talking to a skilled individual can help.
It’s OK not to understand why you feel the way you do. However, if you can identify what goals you’d like to achieve, you can search for a teletherapist that knows how to help people get to where you want to be.
Different clients respond better to certain types of therapy. If you’d like to try talk therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), art therapy or another technique, you can search for someone with trusted experience providing that service.
Research Your Options
There are thousands of teletherapists to choose from, but you must do your research to protect yourself and your wallet.
The first thing you can do is figure out what your insurance covers. While you can pay solely out of pocket, you can expect to spend at least $200 monthly. Research what online platforms accept your insurance and how much you could save using it.
You should also check if your insurance is willing to cover teletherapy. While it’s becoming more mainstream, some companies still hesitate to pay for virtual mental health. If your plan doesn’t, you should isolate the services you can afford without it.
Find out whether therapists in your area offer teletherapy services. Many professionals provide in-person and virtual sessions, which could be a great option if you can’t do in-person now but would like to try it later.
Suppose you know you want to stay virtual or wish to expand your options. In that case, you can look through online databases of accredited professionals helping people with your goals. Read reviews to avoid red flags once you narrow down the platforms or therapists you’d like to try.
Ask friends or family engaging in teletherapy sessions about who is trustworthy.
Set up an Intake Appointment
Once you’ve identified who you want to have an appointment with, contact them about setting up an intake. It is the initial appointment when the therapist introduces themselves and learns about you so you can set goals together.
This appointment is an excellent opportunity to ask any questions about starting the teletherapy process with them and determine whether you will be comfortable working with them.
An advantage of teletherapy is that you can do it from the comfort of your home. Choose a spot where you are cozy but can concentrate on the information you learn during the appointment. Decorate your therapy space with plants, pictures and knickknacks. Just ensure the items don’t distract you from your session.
Trust Your Instincts
Don’t let a nonproductive session or two discourage you from continuing to seek help. Therapists have different approaches, personalities and expertise, and teletherapy allows you to consult with professionals worldwide.
You can move on to someone else if something doesn’t feel right about your care. Finding the right provider is similar to shopping. It’s OK to change your mind and try another therapist if you don’t feel you’re getting the most out of the experience.
Know that seeking mental health care is as essential as doing so for your physical health. Trust yourself to make the right choices and lean on those you can trust to give encouragement and advice.
Connecting With a Teletherapist
Starting therapy can be exciting and nerve-wracking. Teletherapy offers more options and flexibility to help you find the right fit. Knowing your options, conducting research and trusting your gut will uncover the teletherapist right for you.
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