Does Skype Therapy Really Work?

by Andrea Blundell
Reviewed by Dr Sheri Jacobson

Feel nervous about trying therapy by Skype or Facetime? Worry it just won’t be as effective as going to an office and seeing a therapist in-person?

Here are some things to consider.

Skype therapy is shown by research to be effective.

Research shows that online therapy has equally high results at helping clients to feel supported and reach their goals.

Some types of therapy seem more effective over Skype.

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) in particular works well via Skype, with good results when it comes to treating depression. A Canadian study found clients had better results doing CBT over the internet than in person.

Certain psychological issues are better treated over Skype.

With Skype therapy, you don’t have to leave your house. So it's a great fit for social anxiety. A study found that over 90% of test subjects even felt Skype therapy lowered their fear of social situations. And they were still feeling the results three months later.

Skype therapy also scores high for obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and phobias. It offers new ways of doing exposure therapy, where clients face their triggers. Your therapist can be 'present' over video as you face your fears and triggers in real time.

It can work in more ways than just the therapy itself.

Doing therapy via Skype can mean therapy is a better fit for your life. It's easier to fit into your schedule if you don’t have to factor in the hours and cost of travel to your therapist’s office. It can mean you don’t need to find someone to take care of your sick relative or children, who can stay in another room during your sessions. And it can mean you still see your therapist even when you have to travel for work.

It's true there are differences.

There is no point in pretending Skype therapy is exactly the same as traditional therapy. For example, a Skype therapist can’t as easily read your body language. It can be harder for them to draw diagrams for you. And if you are the sort who actually take comfort from being in someone else’s presence, it might not be ideal.

But if you only have time for Skype therapy, it’s a good start.

If you think in the future you’ll be more available for some in-person sessions, you can always ask if your therapist does ‘mixed therapy’, a blend of in-person sessions with ones over Skype.

Ready to give Skype therapy a whirl? We offer therapists for all budgets. Book today, be receiving the help you need as soon as tomorrow.

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