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  • Writer's pictureLively Lifestyles Psychology

How To Prepare for your Telehealth Psychology Appointment

In today's digital age, the world of therapy has expanded beyond the traditional office setting. Telehealth psychology appointments offer a convenient and effective way to receive counseling services from the comfort of your own home.

Online therapy may be a great option for you, as:

  • it removes geographical restrictions

  • you wouldn't need to take a half-day or full-day off work to travel

  • you can attend the session in the comfort of your own home, which includes your own setting (if you want to be cosied up on the couch in lounge-wear, that's totally fine)

  • you can create a space in your home which feels right for you

  • you can cuddle your dog while you have the session (win!)

Research has also shown that telehealth therapy is just as effective as face-to-face therapy, but we understand that the idea of engaging in therapy through a screen can sometimes evoke anxiety and uncertainty. In this article, we will delve into some practical tips and guidance to help you prepare for your Telehealth psychology appointment, empowering you to make the most of this virtual therapeutic experience.

Test Your Technology

  • Before your appointment, ensure that your computer, smartphone, or tablet is equipped with the necessary software and a reliable internet connection.

  • Test the audio and video functionalities to ensure a smooth session.

  • Familiarise yourself with the platform being used for the appointment.

Create a Private and Comfortable Space

  • Find a quiet and private space in your home where you can have your appointment without distractions or interruptions.

  • Consider using headphones to enhance the audio quality and maintain confidentiality.

  • Pay attention to lighting to ensure that your face is well-illuminated, allowing for better engagement between you and your psychologist.

  • Ensure to keep your device on a steady surface so that you are focus, and so that your hands are free for holding a warm drink or taking notes!

Reduce Distractions

  • Close all the apps and email accounts on your devices.

  • Switch off notifications or turn your device on mute so that reminders and messages are not popping up during your telehealth appointment.

  • If you find yourself in a situation where you have children and no available childcare, you can try to set them up with their favourite movie or other safe form of entertainment. However, if you do get interrupted by your children, or if you need to attend to an urgent phone call or respond to someone, please know that it is perfectly fine. Once you have attended to whatever it is you needed to do, take a moment to collect your thoughts and return to the conversation with your psychologist when you are feeling ready.

Prepare Notes or Questions

  • A day before your session (or at least a few hours before), take a few moments to reflect on what you would like to discuss during your session, or what you would like to get out of it.

  • Jot down any specific concerns, questions, or topics you wish to address. Having a list of points to reference can help you stay focused and ensure that you make the most of your session's limited time.

Take a Deep Breath and Settle In

It is not uncommon to experience some anxiety before a Telehealth appointment, particularly if it's your first time. Take a few minutes to engage in calming activities beforehand, such as deep breathing, mindfulness exercises, or progressive muscle relaxation. Remind yourself that your psychologist is there to support you and that the virtual format is designed to provide you with convenience and flexibility.

Be Open and Honest

Effective therapy relies on open and honest communication. Remember that your psychologist is trained to create a safe and non-judgmental space for you. You are welcome to express any concerns or apprehensions you may have about the Telehealth format, such as difficulties with technology or discomfort or challenges in setting up your space. By sharing your feelings, you can collaborate with your psychologist to find solutions that alleviate your concerns.

Establish Boundaries and Self-Care

After your appointment, it is important to allow yourself time to process and integrate the session. Engage in self-care activities that help you relax and unwind, such as stretching, taking a walk, journaling, or practicing mindfulness. Be mindful of the impact of the session on your emotions and give yourself permission to experience and process those feelings.

We hope that these tips will assist you in maximising the benefits of your telehealth psychology appointments and enable you to derive the utmost value from your sessions with your psychologist.

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