One of the best things about being counseled by a therapist is the human and physical connection between the two of you. By sharing your emotions, the therapist creates a safe environment for free and empathetic conversation. Now imagine sharing your feelings with an AI therapist. Yes, some sort of an AI-powered robot to take you through your sessions.
That is what some experts think might solve the situation of scarce therapists worldwide. These experts believe that AI can be more affordable and accessible since human therapists are inaccessible due to their low numbers. According to the Wall Street Journal, these AIs could offer therapeutic services via smartphone Apps, websites, and even social media.
In their report, the Wall Street Journal also suggests that clinicians and researchers often turn to AI for an objective definition of mental health and ensure quality care among patients. This suggestion somewhat elevates the quality of the services the AI can provide beyond affordability and accessibility scope.
The AI may be affordable and easily accessible. However, its accuracy and efficacy are still scrutinized since it relies entirely on algorithms. The algorithms constitute extensive data fetched from individual brain scans, therapy session transcripts, digital well-being data, individuals data from social media posts, etc. All these seem good but not enough for the therapy sessions for various reasons.
Referring to the same report on the Wallstreet Journal, one of the issues lies with different companies producing AIs. Among the problems is that most AI-producing companies don’t tell us how their AI works. Since we can’t tell how the AI works, it’s hard to understand its efficacy, which puts its quality in jeopardy.
Concealing essential details about the AI, the producing companies elevates our skepticism about the machine’s accuracy. It, therefore, means that the dangers associated with the recommendations given to patients could only be magnified, especially when the patients are unable to contemplate the diagnosis.
Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, some experts believe that AI could help a lot in psychology. “On an analysis entrance, AI may also help us unlock among the complexities of the mind and work towards understanding these sicknesses higher, which may also help us provide new, efficient therapy.” Said Dr. Torous