The COVID-19 pandemic has pushed many of our day-to-day endeavors online ― school, work, fitness, socialization, and even mental health care. But when it comes to therapy, the virtual medium can present challenges, particularly for young people.
“It is sometimes more difficult to engage kids in sessions conducted via telehealth,” said Nicole Schatz, research assistant professor and clinic director at Florida International University’s Center for Children and Families. “Although many kids can engage with telehealth sessions just fine, some may benefit more from in-person treatment sessions.”
Speaking to a therapist through a screen from home can present concerns about privacy for kids and teens feeling their close proximity to family members. There may also be distractions, discomfort, and a sense of distance that make opening up and engaging with therapy difficult.
But even if in-person sessions aren’t an option at the moment, there are still ways to deal with some of these challenges. That’s where parents and caregivers come in.
So what exactly can parents do to encourage their children to open up in remote therapy and have a healthy and productive experience? Below, Schatz and other experts share their advice.