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Advantages of Telephone Counseling Over Face-to-Face Therapy

Telephone therapy offers several advantages over face-to-face counseling.

Telephone therapy offers several advantages over face-to-face counseling.

Telephone counseling may seem new to laypersons, but it has been around for a long time in the form of crisis counseling - on suicide hotlines, for example. However, you don't have to be in a state of crisis to benefit from telephone therapy; more and more individuals are finding that because it's easy and convenient, telephone therapy fits into their busy lives much better than traditional face-to-face counseling.

Telephone counseling is available and suitable for people who need therapy:

  • as a second opinion on a psychological matter.
  • for depression or anxiety.
  • for parenting or caregiver issues.
  • while considering, going through, or recovering from divorce.
  • for work-related concerns.
  • to deal with aging and life transitions.

Benefits of phone therapy over face-to-face counseling include:

  • the decision about which therapist to work with isn't limited by geography; you can choose to work with the counselor with whom you have the best rapport or because she or he specializes in the issue for which you're seeking counseling.
  • you don't have to travel anywhere for your appointment, which makes carving out time for therapy easier. You don't have to deal with traffic or other transportation problems, making the overall therapeutic experience less stressful.
  • you can participate in therapy even if you aren't feeling completely well or are particularly upset, because no preparation is required. If you're having a bad day, you may want to let your therapist know, but you don't have to worry about whether or not your nose is running or your eyes are swollen from crying.
  • it is usually easier to schedule an additional appointment if one is needed (for example, after a difficult divorce court hearing). Your schedule won't have to change much to fit in another hour of counseling, and your counselor will likely have a more flexible schedule than someone with a brick-and-mortar practice.
  • continuity of care: you can maintain your relationship with your counselor even when you go on a business trip, go on vacation or move to a different state - or even a different country. And should you wish to reestablish contact with your therapist after you have terminated counseling, she or he is only a phone call away, no matter where you happen to be living.
  • many telephone therapy clients feel there is greater equality between themselves and the counselor than in traditional face-to-face sessions. This can be comforting for clients who don't like the power disparity that sometimes accompanies face-to-face analysis.
  • many phone counseling clients find it easier to talk openly about deeply personal issues, emotions and experiences over the phone than in person. Knowing that the therapist can't see your face when you discuss sensitive issues can make it easier to talk about them. This is particularly comfortable for clients who don't like to show their emotions to others.

If you've been thinking about trying telephone counseling, all you have to do to see if it's right for you is pick up the phone.  What could be easier?

Comments

Rachaelle Lynn (author) from Gainesville, Florida on June 04, 2011:

Thanks for the kind feedback, smcopywrite!

smcopywrite from all over the web on May 22, 2011:

thanks for sharing this useful information on telephone counseling, i wasn't aware of all of the uses. great hub.

Rachaelle Lynn (author) from Gainesville, Florida on August 05, 2010:

Marie, I'm glad you liked the article. I'm sure you would agree that the benefits of phone counseling have not been extolled enough. This article is an effort to correct that imbalance. Thanks so much for reading and commenting!

Marie on August 05, 2010:

Hi, I am based in London and work in the Telephone Counseling field. It was very nice to come across this article. Thanks for posting it!

Rachaelle Lynn (author) from Gainesville, Florida on July 28, 2010:

Thanks Jaggedfrost and belliott! I'm glad you both liked the article!

belliott on July 28, 2010:

Good information. I can see that it might be easier for a variety of reason for some people to use Telephone Counseling.

Jaggedfrost on July 28, 2010:

I appreciate the perspective. It has reminded me that it is a form that I could look into.

Rachaelle Lynn (author) from Gainesville, Florida on July 27, 2010:

Thanks so much, Susan!

susanlang on July 27, 2010:

Wonderful insights for telephone counseling...we all need alittle of that from time to time :) I rated up.

Rachaelle Lynn (author) from Gainesville, Florida on July 27, 2010:

You are welcome, kaltopsyd, and I'm so glad you found the article helpful! Thanks for reading and commenting!

kaltopsyd from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA on July 27, 2010:

I think telephone counseling is a great idea. I wasn't aware of the other types of telephone counseling (only depression and suicide hotlines). So thanks for educating me.

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