Using video for therapy sessions

I use video for therapy sessions because it is secure and straightforward to use. To access the programme you can use a computer, a tablet or a smartphone with a camera and a microphone.

All you need to use video for your therapy sessions

  1. A device–mobile phone, tablet, laptop, PC or Mac
  2. A reasonably good internet connection–Wi-fi or 3G, 4G, 5G
  3. Headphones, if possible.

Using video for therapy sessions will suit you if you…

–want your online sessions to be as close as possible to face to face work with a therapist.
–have a suitable phone, tablet or computer to use.
–have a reasonably good broadband connection.
–want to be able to lip read to enhance your understanding.
–know that picking up on verbal clues is important to you.
–are able to set up a suitable space to work in where you will not be overheard or interrupted.

I will provide you with clear instructions. I will not, and ask you to agree not to, record our meetings together. When we make an appointment I set up a meeting space personal to you and send you a link to it.

When you book a free 20 minute chat with me I will set this up on my video meeting app so that you can try it out and see how it feels.

If you want to feel more confident you could always have a practice with someone more familiar with it ahead of our appointment. Perhaps the most important thing is to make sure you set up a private place to sit and that your phone or laptop is securely placed in front of you.

Do I need to wear headphones during therapy sessions?

For three main reasons it will probably work best to use headphones of some sort for your therapy sessions. They should have a built in microphone.

  • Firstly, for clarity. If you try to use the loudspeaker on your device plus the built in microphone the sound will be less clear and we may not be able to hear each other properly, which is very frustrating.
  • Secondly, you will be more comfortable if you can relax in a chair rather than lean over your device.
  • Thirdly, with headphones and a decent microphone near to your mouth you will be able to speak naturally and not too loudly and only you will hear what I am saying.

In ear, on ear or over ear headphones?

You will need a set of headphones with a built in microphone. There are many different types of headphone available.

For example, you could simply use the ear bud ones that came with your device. However, you might be more comfortable wearing an ‘over ear’ or ‘on ear’ pair of headphones with a microphone. Also, you could think about whether it will suit you better to use a headset attached with a wire or a Bluetooth connected one. How convenient will it be to use one that requires charging ahead of the session? There are lots of considerations and you can find help on a site such as this one. I would also suggest asking around for advice. I find a personal recommendation can be the most useful thing. Spending a lot of money is unnecessary but you will need to be able to wear them for an hour without losing charge or becoming uncomfortable.

Data security on video meetings for therapy sessions

No method of meeting with your counsellor is 100% secure, even if you meet in person. However there are measures that can be taken to greatly reduce the risk of a breach in security. Both systems I use, Cliniko and on VSee, are designed for healthcare use and so they have high standards of data security and confidentiality. They protect and encrypt all audio & video data and control access to private meetings. There is no storage of video or audio data and I do not record and request that you do not record our sessions either.