Online counseling provides people with an opportunity to receive help and assistance over the internet. Counselors work with clients on their particular concerns and issues, as they would when providing counseling face to face.
Counseling can be provided in a number of ways. Some users use email, others use programs that enable real-time chat. This can be through text, voice or video. Sometimes counseling can be provided through a discussion board. Whatever the format, a professional counselor will take steps to try to ensure your security and privacy is upheld, as they would with traditional counseling.
The great thing about online counseling is that you can see a counselor when it suits you, and can do so from the comfort of your own home. You do not need to travel to an office or worry about child care costs. Furthermore, it makes counseling more accessible, provided you have access to the internet. Some people prefer the greater anonymity it brings and where they would normally be associated to go to a counselor's office may be willing to receive help remotely.
Communication has changed dramatically in recent years and many people now use the internet as the central role in their contact with friends, family, work collections and services. It is now common for a person to make new friends and engage in discussions with people they have never physically met and probably never will. This social side to the web (commonly referred to as Web 2.0) has been very successful and is almost the expected way to do business. As such web based counseling provided this way can be very beneficial as it is performed in an environment and using tools that a person is used to.