Therapists do not have to just exist during your sessions at their office. There are some therapists who use Instagram as a way to communicate with their clients such as posts about self-care, mothering oneself, imposter syndrome and trauma. By using pictures and inspiration texts on Instagram to get through to their clients, therapists have the opportunity to provide emotional support to their patients even after their therapy session is over.

Which Therapists Use Instagram to Reach Their Clients?

Lisa Oliveria is a pioneer of being a therapist on Instagram. She started her Instagram account @lisaoliveriatherapy in November 2017 while going from private-practice work to community mental health. She used Instagram as a way for clients to find her. Oliveria has gained 161,000 followers in two years which is more than the mayor of New York City has. She said that she found it inspiring to see the number of people who wanted to learn about emotional health and were willing to do the work even if they had no access to therapy.

Marriage and family therapist Allyson Dinneen has an Instagram account @notesfromyourtherapist. She writes handwritten advice on scrap pieces of paper to show on her account to 130,000 followers. Dinneen opened her account also in 2017 while she started her private practice. She liked the way of using Instagram as a way to open up to more than one person. While these accounts should not be used in the place of therapy, they can be a good way to heal yourself. Both therapists spend 10-15 hours a week generating Instagram content, responding to comments, and reading messages on their account.

What Do Therapists in Online Spaces Need to Watch Out For?

Lynn Bufka who is in charge of policy and research at the American Psychological Association believes therapists online need to be careful about soliciting patients and advertising products. They also need to make sure that they are not treating someone outside of the state that they are licensed in. Both of these therapists say that they do not give individual advice to their followers since Instagram is not a confidential platform. If followers want specific advice, these therapists will reply with another Instagram account or a link to a book. By having therapists reach out to their clients through Instagram, they are saying to them that they are there for you in and out of the office.

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