Online Therapy vs. Traditional Therapy: Which is Right for You?

Traditionally attending psychotherapy would involve the session being held in the therapist’s office, the appointment time and day would usually be the same week to week and the sessions would be held face to face. Since the Covid-19 pandemic, there has been an increase in the number of people accessing psychotherapy services online. As we all mostly made the transition to working virtually, the same trend can be seen for how people chose to attend their psychotherapy sessions. As online therapy is a relatively new service option you may ask is virtual therapy as effective as traditional therapy? Depending on how comfortable you are with using online services, online therapy may be a suitable, convenient option to a more traditional in-person session.

When beginning therapy, either in-person or online, you may need to understand what you are looking to work on with your therapist and what you may require from your therapist in return. The relationship with your therapist is the most important factor to effectively work through your issues in your therapy sessions, for some people they are happy to work in the comfort of their own home while for others they would prefer to see their therapist in-person to build the relationship together. This does not mean that therapy is better in-person or online, it is dependent on how comfortable you feel in the therapy space to allow yourself to open up and speak. If this is your first-time starting therapy you may want to weigh the benefits of therapy online vs in-person, understand what makes the two options different and figure out what is the most effective therapy for you.

Benefits and Drawbacks of Online Therapy

Online therapy is a modern effective method of therapy that can help make access to psychotherapy services more convenient than in-person. There are more options available with online therapy such as through videocall, telephone or using direct messaging. If this is your first-time attending therapy, you may want to choose an option that you feel the most comfortable working with. Some people may feel intimidated by the idea of opening up to someone in person, so online therapy is an alternative option to help manage the anxiety of having to attend a session. The quality of therapy that you receive online is the same as in-person. Most online therapists at Mind and Body Works are fully qualified and accredited so the level of training they have received is the same as in-person psychotherapists.

Some ways that online therapy may not work as effectively to traditional therapy are that you may not feel the same connection to your therapist working online vs in person. Both therapist and client may respond better to seeing body language or non-verbal communication, such as lack of eye contact or folding arms and legs. This can easily be missed if the sessions are not held in person. If you are dealing with a severe mental illness, online therapy may not be the best option for you. While it can be seen as an effective tool as part of treatment, if you have a severe mental health condition it would be advisable to attend in person therapy or treatment as there are more resources for after care.

Benefits and Drawbacks of Traditional Therapy

Traditional therapy usually refers to the process of attending therapy in person. This may be the preferred therapy method as it is what people imagine when they think of attending a therapy session. There is comfort knowing that there is someone you can go to talk to outside of your environment. You may not have access to privacy to facilitate an online call within in your home or workplace. It can then be more private and confidential to attend your sessions in-person where you have a space specifically dedicated to meeting with your therapist. You may feel it easier to relate to your therapist in-person by seeing someone sitting in front of you as it may make you feel more secure when talking about yourself in such a personal way.

For some people, trying to access a therapy centre can prove difficult. You may live in an area where the services may not be as readily available to you as in a more urban city area. Trying to fit in a new routine of attending weekly sessions can be tricky. If you have a busy working routine, your availability may not match up with the therapist you would like to work with, which can make traditional therapy seem like more of a task to attend than online therapy sessions.

How to Choose the Right Therapy for You

There is no right or wrong way to attend therapy and you may see the pros and cons in both online and traditional therapy Knowing which one may work the most effectively for you can help you decide as to which method would work best for you. If you have a busy schedule or feel comfortable enough with technology, then you may feel that virtual therapy is as effective as in person therapy. But if you feel that you connect better with people in-person and would like a space that is specifically catered to you speaking, then you may like to stick with the traditional therapy model.

At Mind and Body Works we offer both in-person and online therapy sessions. If you have any questions about which method you think would be most suitable for you, please contact our administration team who are happy to guide you through what the therapy process looks like for both online and in-person appointments. Being comfortable with your therapist in your therapy space is one of the most important factors within the therapy process. Choosing the right therapy approach can be the start of you making the key decisions that will help guide you through the process.

If online therapy is an option that you would like to pursue, please browse the Mind and Body Works website to read about our online therapists we have working with us. We have a profile and biography for each therapist to help make your choice of therapist easier for you. Alternatively, you can contact us on 01 6771021 or email us at and our team can help offer you some guidance.

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