Updated: Jun 14, 2020
You may have considered joining Ayana Therapy’s Crowdfunding Campaign in order to take advantage of a free month of therapy; however you might be skeptical of participating in a therapeutic relationship over an app. You are not alone in feeling hesitant to engage in therapy online. For many of us who are approaching teletherapy for the first time it can be helpful to learn from the experiences of others. I personally felt that my experience with teletherapy was comparable and at times much more convenient than my experience with traditional therapy. It can be difficult to try something new, so let’s break down some myths about teletherapy for those of you who are considering joining our Ayana Therapy community.
Myth #1: Teletherapy doesn’t work. It can’t be as effective as in person therapy.
This is the most common myth about teletherapy and it simply just isn’t true. Therapists who provide teletherapy are mandated by national associations to provide the same quality of care in person as they do online. Research has suggested that participating in teletherapy can yield similar results as in person therapy. Additionally, teletherapy tends to have a wider appeal in marginalized communities because online therapy increases accessibility for folks who struggle to find time to travel to a therapist’s office.
Myth #2: Teletherapy cannot treat severe mental illness.
One thing to remember about teletherapy is that the actual therapy is not different, the mode of delivery is. A therapist is still able to support you, and if you choose Ayana you can have your therapist at your fingertips with daily texting through our app. For those with severe cognitive difficulties, teletherapy may be extremely beneficial as well. Dot Com therapy suggests the following, “Here are some examples of some other populations that could benefit from teletherapy services: an individual with autism that communicates via picture exchange, an individual with cerebral palsy who is NPO (nothing by mouth) with the exception of speech therapy feeding trials, individuals who are deaf/hard of hearing and use sign language, an individual with Down syndrome who is learning how to use an AAC device, and individuals with severe behaviors. In fact, often times I’ve seen an increase in performance in speech therapy and decrease in behaviors, e.g. meltdowns, when using the web-based therapy platform.”
Myth #3: Online Therapy is not secure.
At AYANA your privacy and safety are always the first consideration. Like many teletherapy services, we go to great lengths to ensure that you and your data are always kept safe and confidential. Our technology is fully HIPAA compliant and your safety is our #1 priority. All of your chat data is encrypted on the servers, and all communication between our software and the servers is encrypted.
Myth #4: It is easier to be distracted while in a therapy session online.
Working from home is a challenge in itself, so how could one go about initiating a therapy session from home? I have found that communication with your family members is key. Be clear about your need for quiet time away from others so that you may speak freely with your therapist. If finding a place in your home to be alone is difficult, consider stepping outside for your session. It can also be helpful to switch off notifications on your phone and avoid being near any devices that may distract you during your session.
Myth #5: It is harder to work in depth in online sessions.
Though it may seem strange at first, teletherapy can be tool that invites open and honest communication. Connecting with your therapist in a place that feels safe can be conducive to a deep level of healing. Additionally, Ayana is unique in that we offer the opportunity to engage in therapy anonymously. This can be a good option for folks who are just starting out with therapy, especially if the stigma of seeking mental health services is a concern.
I hope that we have shed some light on the true nature of teletherapy. If you have more questions head on over to our FAQ page for more information on how Ayana Therapy functions. Given the Covid-19 pandemic, we urge you to stay home and be safe. However, that does not mean that your mental health needs to suffer. Take advantage of a free month of therapy services by visiting our Crowdfunding Page and exploring our options. Continue to take care of yourself physically and mentally. We are so excited to welcome you to the Ayana Therapy community.