Using Telehealth on a personal computer
You will set up a session using my on-line portal like you always do. Then send me an email to let me know you would like to make it an on-line appointment. Once this is done,
To join a Telehealth call on your computer, there is nothing you will have to install or download. You can begin your Telehealth appointments simply by clicking a link.
You will automatically receive an email and/or text reminder for Telehealth appointments 10 minutes prior to their start time, as long as the appointment was set up before the email/text reminder window.
The text reminder directs you to check your email, while the email reminder includes the link to join the video call. This email reminder is sent in addition to any email, text, and/or voice reminders you are set up to receive.
The reminder email will include details about the appointment, as well as the link to join the video call:
When you click the Join Video Call link, a new tab will open in yourr browser that looks the same as what I see. Just enter your name and then click Join Video Call.
Using Telehealth on a mobile device
You also have the option to download the Telehealth by SimplePractice mobile app to join the video call from a smartphone or tablet. You can download it from the app store. Once you have the app, follow these steps:
Open the email reminder you received for the appointment
Click Join video call
The Telehealth by SimplePractice app will launch automatically
The first time you launch the Telehealth app, you'll see a Welcome screen
Enter your name for the call
Click Enter Video Call
Here is a helpful PDF which gives guidance on your upcoming video session.
Video Therapy for Couples
UNCERTAINTY AND CHANGE
Due to the novel Coronavirus, we are all facing stress levels that are much higher than usual. You may be filled with uncertainty, and feel triggered by the constant stream of bad news and rapidly changing restrictions to our lives. As of this writing, Santa Clara County has placed a “shelter in place” order. This directs everyone to stay inside their homes and away from others as much as possible until April 7, 2020.
Here is a very helpful downloadable guide called "Living with worry and anxiety amidst global uncertainty".
TURNING A CHALLENGE INTO AN OPPORTUNITY
This new reality can place a real strain on navigating your most important relationships. In addition to normal challenges in life, couples are also experiencing:
disagreements about the severity of the Coronavirus,
arguments about ways to deal with day-to-day decisions regarding safety,
tension about finances,
fear about loved ones' health,
feelings of isolation,
anxiety that shows up as irritability and anger...
and the list goes on and on.
Here are two excellent videos on how to diffuse fights during this time:
1) Fight about strict we should be in our sheltering
The main points are agree to disagree and opt for safety during a crisis.
2) When you feel anxious, here's some coping strategies.
The main points are figure out what you're feeling and then, when you're both in a good place, express them to your spouse. Make the virus the enemy, not your spouse.
Please know that I am available to support you using Teletherapy (Video or Phone). In fact, I encourage you to use this time at home better your communication, improve your marriage and strengthen your family.
VIDEO COUPLES THERAPY
I use SimplePractice Telehealth, which is based on a Zoom platform and is compliant with industry standards (HIPAA). In order to take advantage of telehealth services, all you need is a computer or smartphone with a working webcam and access to high speed internet or good cell reception.
LIMITATIONS OF VIDEO
The most common obstacle is a concern about interruption from children. There are several ways to deal with this. First, if you are interrupted, we pause for a moment, ask the kids to leave, and then restart. It's not ideal but we usually recover quickly. Second, depending on the age of the children, you can ask them to not disturb you in advance. Clearly explain that you are working on your communication with each other. This sets a great example of working on relationships for their later lives.
There are several limitations to online couples counseling that you should be aware of. At a most basic level, you need to be willing to have an open mind to building emotional connections using technology. Often, clients talk themselves out of trying online counseling because they think “they’ll be talking to a computer.” Many of these folks are pleasantly surprised by how easy it is once they get started. In fact, some clients actually feel more comfortable being in the privacy of their own living room.
Security and Privacy:
Even though I use a well established service, SimplePractice based on Zoom, it is never 100% risk free. Even the most secure system can be hacked. I hope this does not deter you but I feel it's my duty to mention it.
BENEFITS OF VIDEO
The benefits of video therapy can be tremendous. You can maintain the progress in therapy that you've already invested in. If you're new to therapy, you begin the process of healing and growth in the comfort of your own home.
If you would like to schedule a session, please click here.