Psychologist Cande Díaz explains why online therapy has a lot of potential.
In a short time, online psychotherapy has become popular at a massive level due to the advantages it poses in terms of psychological assistance services. People with little experience using computers have started to take advantage of this format of psychological therapy as patients, given its simplicity of use.
But … what exactly is the potential for online therapy to become popular in a few years? The psychologist Cande Díaz, with years of experience treating people through the video call format, gives us some of the keys to understanding it.
Interview with Cande Díaz: online therapy, from the point of view of psychologists
Cande Díaz is a psychologist, coach and mentor based in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, although thanks to online therapy the people they help are spread out much more in the Canary archipelago. Here she tells us about her experience working with this format remotely.
From the point of view of clients and patients, what do you think are the main advantages of online therapy?
Making the decision to go to a psychologist is very important and even today, it is still full of “resistance.” However, online therapy offers a series of advantages that help make this decision and redirect our lives, with fewer difficulties than traditional face-to-face therapy. I would highlight the following advantages.
On the one hand, it is ideal for people with little time and who live far from the psychologist they want to go to. With this service the need for travel disappears and the time invested in it is reduced.
On the other hand, there is complete accessibility for people with reduced mobility, since it is not necessary for them to leave their home. Physical barriers disappear.
There is also the factor of time flexibility: since it is not subject to the hours of a center, it can be better adapted to the time needs of the patient.
In addition, it is very easy to execute at a technological level, since with simple Apps for mobile, Tablet or PC, completely free for the patient, the sessions can be carried out. Virtually everyone has a mobile. Simply with it, it can be carried out.
To this must be added a reduction in costs, since an online session can cost up to 50% less than the traditional one.
It also offers a high level of privacy: for many people their privacy is very important, and that attending a psychologist is a completely intimate process, without the need to go to a consultation where someone you know can see you.
Online therapy is suitable for people who study outside of Spain or who are traveling for work or any other reason: facilitating connectivity in the same language, in any territory (national or international), including chat therapy if it is an option chosen.
The session via video call also provides the option of innovation, introducing more resources that will help the effectiveness of the therapy for those who enjoy new technologies, also allowing the sending of links, recordings, images, etc.
Finally, it has the advantage of the extra in safety and health: given the special moment in which we live, from the safety of our home, and without exposure to COVID-19, we can have our session in complete peace of mind.
Do you consider that this format of support for people is flexible enough in terms of the types of problems to be solved in which it can be applied?
Of course, online therapy is just as effective as face-to-face therapy and provides, at a minimum, the same resources. In my opinion, it provides even more flexibility.
Is it easy for people without experience in using the Internet to start having psychological support through video calls?
This is one of the main impediments that some people have to carry out these types of sessions. However, when you explain how simple it is to carry out the sessions, and they try it, 100% have repeated.
As simple as doing it from a mobile where we have WhatsApp installed, we can carry out a video call. Also with other applications like Skype. And for those who do not want to use Apps, it is enough to connect to the Internet and access a link that I provide completely free of charge for them, and where we access a space where we see and listen to each other, where I can share documents, videos, images. , audios … completely confidential and private.
In the same way, there is also the online modality of chat therapy. Resource to which more and more people choose for its comfort and daily access.
From what you have seen so far, why has online psychotherapy become very popular in recent years, and not before, with the appearance of video calling services?
More and more people appreciate your time and comfort. Increasingly, we turn to new technologies as a means of communication for absolutely everything.
The video call also gives you the security of seeing and listening to your psychologist with complete peace of mind, wherever you want to be, without physical or practically temporary limitations. You don’t have to miss out on your long-awaited session due to traffic, travel, etc.
What are psychologists who have not yet adapted to the online environment missing out when offering their services to patients?
From my point of view, they miss the option of resorting to a magnificent medium that eliminates borders and provides accessibility to all people. The seriousness, the affection, the trust, the tranquility and the effectiveness that I bring to my patients are exactly the same.
What’s more, many patients find it easier to express their feelings and concerns through therapy online than in person. They are less constrained. At least, from my experience, the connection I have with all the people who have trusted me is wonderful. I could not be more thankful.
Do you think that in the next few years online psychology services will continue to expand, or are they already close to reaching a ceiling in terms of their potential users?
Online psychology is “in its infancy”. She is still a small baby who is beginning to take her first steps. In recent months the requests have increased dramatically. People have started to use this option and have begun to see its usefulness and all its advantages.
In short, we are at the beginning of a path that is being forged thanks to many and many brave people who want to change their lives, enlarge it, overcome obstacles, be happy, in short. And that they decide on this fast, efficient, flexible, comfortable option and, above all, with a high level of privacy.
However, for those people who like or need physical presence, you can choose a combination of both modalities, offering a mixed therapy, where you can offer psychotherapy sessions with a high experiential enrichment.