Answering this question involved doing what any investigative reporter would do, make a beeline for the source. Claude.ai was asked, “could AI replace therapy?”
The response? “AI has the potential to assist in therapy, but likely cannot fully replace human therapists any time soon.”
It went on to list the reasons why—in typical boring unengaging AI fashion—alluding to what we already know. There’s something profoundly remarkable about our connection to one another, and the value of a shared human experience.
With that being said, there’s one point AI got right. It does have the potential to assist in therapy.
Can AI replace the real thing?
Let’s take a closer look at what AI can and can’t do.
Ways AI Can Assist Mental Health
AI is excellent at helping people stay focused on their mental health journey when working in conjunction with a therapist. It has the capacity to advance research as well.
Here are some examples.
Journaling and Well-Being Apps
Some mental health journaling apps let you record your thoughts in a journal-like fashion, and the information is analyzed via an algorithm that can flag mental health professionals if the entries seem concerning.
Some apps encourage you to do check-ins; note and track how you’re feeling and provide prompts and guided exercises.
CBT & Other Therapeutic Interventions
There are many different therapeutic modalities that address certain aspects of behavior. AI can help reinforce some of the ideas or tools learned in session with a therapist which is especially helpful during those tricky moments in day-to-day life when struggles tend to arise.
It can help reinforce Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) skills, such as tracking emotions, and offer reminders to do things like meditate or jot down how you feel.
AI has the potential to uncover some of the mysteries of the brain, helping neurologists and mental health professionals alike fine-tune treatment methods, understand treatment resistance, and more. It can be used for data mining, genomics, brain mapping, and image analysis.
Why AI Will Never Be Able to Replace Therapy
This is a somewhat unintended consequence of AI, and perhaps you’ve noticed. People seem to have a deeper appreciation and understanding of the role they play in each other’s lives.
Life is both tough and wonderful, and who can better understand that than another human being?
Having a real-live human there, holding space for you and your emotions is something technology will never be able to replicate.
Being able to share your challenges with someone who understands the human condition – both from experience because they’re human themselves and as such are not immune to suffering – and also because they’ve studied psychology and are able to intuit the nuances of behavior or pick up signals, such as body language.
In a world where technology seems to be taking everything over, it’s more important than ever to remember how powerful we are, we’re more complex than any AI.
At the Relationship Therapy Center, our human therapists use a highly sophisticated complex blend of compassion, education, and experience to help people work through their challenges and rediscover their joy and zest for life. It may be tempting or alluring to think that technology could meet our needs in some deep and meaningful way, but no matter how advanced it becomes… nothing beats the real thing.
Therapy in Roseville, CA, Fair Oaks, CA, or Online in California:
If you are ready to change your life for the better, we can help. To begin therapy at our Sacramento area locations or online, follow these steps:
- Contact the Relationship Therapy Center and schedule a free 20-minute phone consultation to learn more.
- Meet with one of our talented therapists
Services Offered at The Relationship Therapy Center in California:
Our Sacramento area counseling clinics located in Roseville and Fair Oaks, CA are pleased to offer a variety of mental health services. Our couples services include: Couples Counseling, Counseling after infidelity, sex therapy, co-parent counseling, family therapy, divorce counseling, intensive couples retreats, and premarital counseling. Our individual therapy services include, anxiety treatment, therapy for children, teen therapy, depression treatment, and individual relationship counseling. Our therapists offer online counseling in California to treat a variety of mental health concerns. Please reach out to our Sacramento area therapy office to learn more about the many ways we can help you or your loved ones.