Telephone Counseling refers to any type of psychological service performed over the telephone. Telephone counseling ranges from individual, couple or group psychotherapy with a professional therapist to psychological first aid provided by para-professional counselors. In-person therapists often advise clients to make use of telephone crisis counseling to provide the client with an avenue to obtain support outside of therapy if they cannot be reached in an emergency or at the conclusion of a therapeutic relationship.

Researchers have begun observing a growing trend in which licensed psychotherapists and psychologists are now seeing at least some of their clients via the telephone. A body of research exists comparing the efficacy of telephone counseling to in-person counseling and to no treatment. A recent study found that more than half of clients (58%) who had experienced both in-person and phone counseling preferred phone counseling. A 2002 study found that phone counseling clients rate their counseling relationship similarly to in-person clients. Phone counseling has been established as an effective treatment for diagnoses ranging from depression to agoraphobia.

Important

  • Counseling is a profession
  • Therefore practitioners should complete a prescribed course to receive a good academic and practical background
  • Counselor should be a member of a professional organization