Specialists see rise in virtual therapy among young people

NOW: Specialists see rise in virtual therapy among young people

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- According to health officials, the Coronavirus Pandemic has increased the need for mental health resources. For the first time, no matter someone’s previous circumstances, worldwide, people are exposed to an entire new situation which results in a distress reaction.  

Social distance has taken on a form of social isolation for many. Now the Saint Joseph Health System has seen an increase in therapy requests. Back in March, they introduced “virtual” therapy, a way to still work with patients from their own home.

Even as in-patient visits are an option today, the health officials say there is a 30% increase for virtual therapy, and it is mostly from - young people.

“They are much more confident talking virtually then coming to the office and going through check in and all of that process. It is us as health care workers who had to adapt to the younger generation. More reluctance was on our side, of how do we do therapy? And it has been a big learning process and connection. We thought we could not connect, but actually they are connecting, and they are doing more in therapy now then in person,” says Majid Malik, M.D., Medical Director of Behavior Health at Saint Joseph Health System.

Dr. Malik believes the virtual options will continue beyond the pandemic and says this comes at a time when taking care of your mental health is more important than ever. He explains the pandemic has disrupted people’s routines which plays a big role in mental health.

“Maintain a routine, then comes the other issues, sleeping on time, waking up on time, eating on time, the way the normal structure works if you disrupt that. You are having sleep problems, your hygiene is not good that will play a role in your mental health or mental illness,” says Dr. Malik.

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