I recently came across this article, and thought I would share it here. It provides a breakdown on what each campaign in the presidential election has to say about mental health, and how they would address it.
When I started my private practice in 2013, I was somewhat "in the closet" when it came to providing online therapy. I knew that I wanted to offer it, but there were very few social workers offering online therapy and our professional organization, the National Association of Social Workers, offered little guidance as to how to provide it. Often, when I shared with others that I offered online therapy, eyebrows would raise.
In four years, a lot has changed. Online therapy has become more accepted. Insurance companies are starting to cover it. People are recognizing that there are many benefits to online therapy, including making mental health services available to those who otherwise would not have access.
But what are the outcomes? Is online therapy "as good" as face to face? It depends on the issue to be addressed. Here are some recent articles that I have come across.
Online Counseling Can be Your Best Option
Online Therapy Effective at Treating Anxiety and Depression
Postnatal Treatment: Online Therapy Produces Outstanding Outcomes
Internet Based Psychotherapy Actually Works (and its effects may even last longer)
If you are in an area where mental health services are lacking, if you are in another country and looking for an English speaking counselor, if you are looking for anonymity, or if online therapy is simply more convenient or comfortable for you, it may be worth looking into seeing someone online. With the advent of online counseling, it means one less barrier to getting help.
We all probably recently heard that a politician indicated that veterans who come back home with PTSD are weak. Why would one suggest such a thing? Because sadly, this is the view that many hold.
The stigmas surrounding mental health challenges, including PTSD, depression, and suicide (among others) are alive and well. All that you have to do is search for hashtags #stopthestigma or #endstigma to see how many people experience stigma.
Stigma is a problem not only because it prevents people from reaching out for help but also because it results in isolation, poor self-esteem, and poor treatment outcomes. You can read more about the prevalence, causes, and effects of stigma here.
If you are a veteran reading this, please know this. You are STRONG. Whatever you experienced and whatever you continue to experience wasn't and isn't your fault. YOU ARE STRONG. THIS ISN'T YOUR FAULT. Help is available, and you are worth it.
Here is a directory of therapists. You can apply many filters, to narrow down who might be a good match for you.
You Are Not Alone. You Are Strong.
Amber is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker. She offers counseling for individual adults and clinical supervision for social workers. For fun, she enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, researching genealogy, reading, and dragon boating.
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