“The new normal” is already starting to feel like a cliché as we navigate this COVID-19 pandemic. But it’s true, we’re all experiencing huge disruption, stress and overwhelm in our lives due to this public health crisis, and it really is creating a new way of life for everyone. While the state of Ohio and many others are starting to open up some of the economy, it’s definitely not business as it was a few months ago. This coronavirus is still among us and wants to spread, and until we’re able get ahead of it with a vaccine, we’ll be living with it and many new protocols for the foreseeable future – incorporating physical distancing of at least 6 feet, wearing masks, using barriers, limiting capacity all with constant hand washing and disinfecting. Everyday life is different and many plans have changed.
Our new normal is going to have many bumps along the way, but there are some positives. We’re seeing creative innovation like never before. Savvy businesses and incredible scientists are thinking of new ways to do things from how to sanitize N95 masks at Battelle here in Columbus, Ohio to hooks used to open doors and contactless pickup at many restaurants and retail stores. Health care is also pivoting in response to COVID-19, and telehealth is becoming more popular than ever. And mental health care is no exception. We’re fortunate to have technology on our side during this crisis, and mental health agencies are able to convert to offering treatment through online therapy. And while it’s not the same as seeing your counselor in person, there are many benefits to online counseling. Here are a few…
YOU CAN “GO” TO YOUR COUNSELING APPOINTMENT
There can be a lot of anxiety associated with routine things like going to the grocery store right now in the midst of this pandemic. What did I touch? Did I sanitize my hands after touching that door? Did I touch my face? How do I wipe down my groceries when I get them home? There’s so much stress over things that used to be so simple. The basic things now take a lot of planning and energy when they used to take little to no thought at all. To have an outlet for your stress and anxiety that doesn’t add to it is so important right now more than ever. With online therapy you can “go” to your appointment from the place you feel the most safe and comfortable – your home. We have the technology, and getting the help you need is the perfect way to use it.
ONLINE THERAPY WORKS!
With technological advances and the introduction of telehealth options, many studies have been conducted on the validity of online mental health counseling. There are reports on the effectiveness of online cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) with a study from the Journal of Anxiety Disorders stating internet-delivered CBT “for anxiety and depressive disorders is effective, acceptable and practical health care.” Another study found that online therapy can work for veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) just as well as in-person counseling.
Online therapy may not be the best choice for more severe mental health issues or those experiencing a mental health crisis, but for many it’s a viable option that we know works and one that mental health therapists are grateful to have during pandemic times where face-to-face interaction must be limited.
FLEXIBLE SCHEDULING WITH ONLINE COUNSELING
When you don’t have to physically go to an appointment, it’s amazing how your scheduling opportunities increase. Suddenly lunch breaks and kids’ nap times become options you would never consider for an in-person counseling session. And you don’t have to incorporate drive time or consider traffic in your scheduling decisions. Maybe you have a teenager who’s home now during the COVID-19 pandemic and can now have an online therapy appointment when before they didn’t have a ride because you were at work – and most teens genuinely thrive with online counseling. Online therapy offers much more flexibility than in-person scheduling, and now is the time to take advantage of that.
ONLINE THERAPY IN OHIO
The COVID-19 health crisis is disrupting our lives, and many are experiencing anxiety and depression symptoms for the first time. Symptoms are worsening for those who already have anxiety and depression issues, and the stresses of daily tasks that now take so much energy are taking their toll on mental health. If you or someone you love is struggling right now, you’re not alone. Blue Boat Counseling offers online counseling, and we can help. Contact us today to schedule an online appointment with one of our Columbus therapists. We’re here to support you.