If you want to become a telehealth therapist, you’ll use virtual platforms like video calls or chats to understand what mental health problems people have. Just like regular therapists, you’ll give them personalized help. To become an online therapist, you can learn how and get the right qualifications for the job.
Usually, therapists talk to people in person to help with their feelings and thoughts. This has been the normal way for a long time. Now, as the virus situation gets better, more therapists with their own offices will see patients in their offices again. But many people are also interested in talking to therapists online, using computers or phones. This means there are lots of people who want online therapy, so if you’re thinking about becoming an online therapist, it’s a really good time to start.
What is an Online Therapist?
Online therapists are mental health experts who help people through the internet instead of meeting them face-to-face. You might talk to people using video calls, chats, messages, or phone calls. Online therapists can focus on specific things they’re really good at, like helping people with speech or language, or they might work with certain types of people.
People might call a teletherapist a remote therapist. These professionals can work from anywhere and at any time. Some might even have a main office even if they usually work from a distance. Remote therapists don’t have many extra costs like regular therapists do. Therapists who work this way can be different kinds, like general therapists, psychologists, or counselors.
What are the Qualifications for Online Therapists?
To be an online therapist, you must get necessary qualifications first. The rules for getting a license depend on the state where the therapist works and where the person getting therapy lives. There are also groups like the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy that have rules for licenses.
The qualifications for therapists depend on the type of therapy they do.
A Psychologist is a title for therapists who have special degrees. They have to work under supervision for a while before they can get a license. Psychologists can figure out mental health problems and make plans to treat them. They usually focus on specific issues like substance abuse, personality disorders, or trauma.
Therapists usually have master’s degrees in subjects like counseling, psychology, or social work, and they also do internships. They have their own areas of expertise like helping families or couples. Their job is to help people understand their feelings and make choices to solve their problems.
Counselors might start with bachelor’s degrees, but they need master’s degrees and licenses to work. They also usually do internships. Counselors often do short-term therapy for certain problems like stress or grief.
Steps to Become a Therapist Online
To start your journey as an online therapist, the first thing to do is pick what kind of therapy you want to do and what area you want to focus on. After that, follow these steps:
- Choose what you want to learn about and become a specialist in.
- Look up information and finish the education you need.
- Get experience by practicing or doing an internship.
- Apply for and get a license or certificate to be a counselor. Remember, this can be different depending on the state you’re in.
Skills of a Telehealth Therapist
Here are some skills that remote therapists usually have:
- Good communication skills: Remote therapists are good at talking with clients online. They use their words to talk to clients and write things down when needed.
- Compassionate: Because remote therapists work with people who have different mental health problems, it’s important to really want to help them. Showing that you care and understand can make clients trust you.
- Active listener: A remote therapist listens carefully to what clients say. This stops mistakes and helps build trust.
- Being Organized: This means being good at arranging and keeping things neat, like patient records. Being organized also helps you work better and have a smoother day.
How Much Does an Online Therapist Earn?
How much online therapists get paid depends on different things like how much they studied and if they’re licensed. They can also be paid in different ways, like for each hour they work, for each session, or for a whole year.
Even though the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn’t separate salaries for online and regular therapists, they have some information to share:
Psychologists: They usually make around $39.51 per hour or $82,280 per year on average.
Marriage and Family Therapists: They usually make about $24.69 an hour or $51,340 per year on average.
Counselors: They usually make around $24.42 an hour or $50,800 per year on average.
The APA says that many mental health experts who join online care groups do it to add to their income. Some become online therapists to have a better balance between work and life. This is because you can work from home and don’t need to travel to an office.
Job Outlook for a Telehealth Therapist
Even though the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) doesn’t talk about the future of remote therapists, they do have information about marriage and family therapists. According to them, these therapists can expect more jobs, with a growth of 16% by 2030. This is much faster than most other jobs. The BLS thinks there will be about 8,500 new jobs for these therapists every year from 2020 to 2030. These new jobs might happen because some people stop working or choose different jobs.
Become a Telehealth Therapist and Support People Remotely
Ready to make a positive impact on people’s lives? If you’re interested in becoming a telehealth therapist, you’ll have the opportunity to provide meaningful support to individuals facing mental health challenges through virtual platforms. Whether you’re drawn to psychology, counseling, or specialized therapy, you can build a fulfilling career by connecting with clients online.
Your compassionate listening, strong communication skills, and organizational abilities will shine in this role. Plus, the flexibility and potential for income growth make it an attractive choice. With the demand for online therapy on the rise and the field evolving, now is the time to embark on this rewarding journey.