The effects of therapist support and treatment presentation on the clinical outcomes of an Internet based applied relaxation program
2015 (English)In: Internet Interventions, ISSN 2214-7829, Vol. 2, no 3, 289-296 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Symptoms of stress are common in the general population and associated with health risks and economic costs. Applied relaxation training has shown to be effective for reducing stress and worry both as a self-help treatment and as an internet-based intervention with therapist support. However, what factors may affect the outcome of internet based relaxation training is unclear. The aims of the present study were to investigate the effect of a brief internet based relaxation program for people with symptoms of stress or worry and to assess whether enhancing the quality of intervention presentation or therapist support had an impact on outcomes.
Participants were randomized in a full factorial design to either Normal or Enhanced treatment Presentation and either Normal or Enhanced therapist Support in a four-week online program with applied relaxation. The main outcome measures were self-report instruments of stress and worry.
A total of 162 participants were included in the study and 94 and 84 participants completed the post and follow-up measurements respectively. Participants in all conditions improved significantly on the main outcome measures, and the different levels of Presentation or therapist Support did not significantly affect treatment outcome. Registered number of completed exercises was a predictor of better treatment outcome, but this effect was independent of treatment condition. Enhancing internet based interventions by improving presentations and the quality of support may thus not be the best way to further improve the effect of internet based interventions. More specific knowledge of the mechanisms that affect outcomes in online psychotherapy is needed.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 2, no 3, 289-296 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-260069DOI: 10.1016/j.invent.2015.07.005OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-260069DiVA: diva2:846198