E-counseling has been preferred by both counselors and clients nowadays. The primary goals of e-counseling are to provide accessibility, affordability, and convenience. Let’s further discuss e-counseling in this article.
E-counseling services is administered by licensed e-counselors as advisers who know how to identify goals and potential solutions to people’s life problems and difficulties. Fortunately, alongside the difficulty of providing guidance services is the opportunity given by technological advancement. E-counseling comes now into the picture of mental health services
What entails e-counseling? And how does it work? More about the treatment here.
Technology is now an essential part of counseling as it potentially increases free time in the lives of patients and practitioners. Those individuals who previously could not find even a little dedicated time for treatment sessions could now access professional help with the tip of their hands through online therapy sessions.
With the help of mobile devices, both patients and online counseling mental health professionals
can interact and assist in building a relationship. Aside from that, mobile devices can support better communication, especially in remote areas where treatment is somehow out of reach. The best part of utilizing mobile gadgets is that both patients and e-counselors can secure convenience, affordability, and fewer restrictions. E-counseling then can be a very good option.
But it is essential to note that while technology may be a good source of collaboration, it can still fail in some aspects. Both patients’ and professionals’ safety and privacy can be at risk. That is because utilizing technology in treatment only works when information gets transmitted online. Therefore, information leaks and hacks can become more of a concern. Aside from that, while technology offers convenience, it lacks in response to critical situations, meaning it would be difficult to access treatment when it gets badly needed by patients.
Utilization of Virtual Augmented Reality
Technology has come a long way at it now proved that it is capable of almost anything. Thus, the utilization of virtual-augmented reality in mental health counseling is becoming extremely sophisticated. In addition, therapy online can support patients-professionals relationships so that both can benefit from the look and feel of an in-person consultation.
A recent study about patients’ simulations shows that virtual-augmented reality can be an effective instrument for the increased brief clinical interviewing skills applicable for people who have behavioral problems. Therefore, shortly, everyone can expect VR technology to help provide standardized and more accessible clinical training in environmental exposure.
But then again, though VR technology sounds very promising, it may still have difficulties in erasing the patients-professionals barrier for giving mental health care. Yes, it can be useful in various situations, especially when the concern is an in-depth understanding of the patient’s condition. However, VR cannot process immediate support and assistance from a trained e-counselor. It would be very difficult to assist the patients with severe symptoms of a mental health condition. The scope of mental health treatment can be limited to instructional procedures only, which is typically not effective in more complex situations.
Computers And Internet Can Save The Day
As bad as the situation of individuals could get, they can still rely on virtual counseling anytime and anywhere. They can utilize technology and the internet due to the flexible nature of its services.
Some e-counselors believe that the even more encouraging effect of digital interventions in giving pieces of advice is to provide a positive experience for patients to convince them to go on and consider seeking face-to-face guidance. And since there is a positive approach in treatment sessions, patients and professionals can build strong connections even before they get in touch personally. Thus, other mental health professionals believe that it can bridge the gap of social interaction. In addition, technology can help encourage patients’ to verbalize particular subjects of their conditions and even make personal interpretations.
But despite the compromising benefits of the treatment, there are still some issues that e-counselors need to address in particular. The most common thing that patients and e-counselors complain about it is miscommunication. Professionals cannot easily access body language information from the patients, leading to a greater risk of missing significant non-verbal cues. In some aspects, the patients might also have serious mental health problems bringing their complex thoughts and emotions into words. And the worse of all, a very unreliable internet connection may jeopardize and interrupt the delivery and flow of the treatment session.
Treatment in a technologically innovated world comes with pros and cons. If people want to utilize convenience and affordability, that is okay. However, they should also consider looking at some important factors that might affect such service. Technology is okay as it provides great benefits when it comes to immediate response. However, it might threaten human-to-human relationships at some point. So, again, people should take time to learn what is more convenient and effective for their mental health needs.
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