Kooth (Everything you need to know about Kooth)

In this brief guide, we will discuss Kooth: a guide, and review. We will also discuss how counselling has progressed in the era of instant messaging and how many new ways there are to communicate with therapists, like free online counselling services.

Kooth: A guide and review

Kooth is an online mental healthcare service which aims to provide mental health service to individuals under the age of 21, and it exists only in the UK, currently.

Kooth is different from a lot of other mental healthcare services that are based online in that it allows for a variety of things that the person can do, including talking to a community, talking to a professional, and having an online journal in which they can write.

In 2001, Elaine Bousfield, the founder of Kooth, established XenZone, so that she could explore how mental health services could be delivered online, because it was already becoming apparent that there was a need to explore such a method to deal with the burgeoning mental health issues in the society, particularly among young people.

A year later, in 2002, XenZone began delivering an email counselling service and magazine focused on young men’s mental health, and this kept developing till 2 years later, in 2004, on the 4th March, XenZone launched Kooth.com in partnership with Stockport Local Authority and Stockport NHS Primary Care Trust with the express purpose of delivering online mental health services to children and young people.

After that Kooth grew steadily still, and by 2008, it had expanded to 8 local authorities and NHS trusts in the North West, which was a huge deal considering it was one of the earliest services of its type to do so.

While Kooth was only paying attention to children and young people up until this point, the makers also realised that there was a need to include adults as well, and they launched their service aimed at taking care of mental health issues in adults in 2018.

Currently Kooth offers 2 different services for adults and children, and they have a separate mental healthcare service for young students, because sometimes students can have very specific issues that may need to be addressed.

Kooth proudly proclaims that they have the world’s largest mental health anonymised data sets which they make use of to help improve their products continuously, which then improves the outcomes for people who utilise the services, including both children and adults. 

It is very admirable that kooth has over 24 m data points across 15 years of service delivery. 

The kooth service aims to provide their clients, that is, children and adults with unique insights about the forever changing and latest emerging trends in mental health and mental healthcare, and they also promise to use their collected data to continually improve their pre-existing services and clinical models so that they can continue to change things accordingly and improve on their existing repertoire of aids for mental health.

The kooth service technology is divided into three parts, they have the main service for users, then they have a community or clinical engagement area and they also have a separate wing for insights and intelligence. 

Koth works and improves by using co-production to build out their welcoming user friendly platforms that users interact with and find the help they need with.

Kooth also provides the users with a range of different therapies and tools that they can use to set goals and receive support.

The Kooth patient administration system has been designed and built with the help of counsellors to ensure it meets the needs of therapeutic intervention for children specially and they make use of their collated insights to help their data technology by doing the appropriate research and evaluation of the things they learn from user feedback and where they are not able to do well enough. 

Kooth Reviews

Here are some of the best kooth reviews to help you understand if kooth is right for you:

“Kooth is really useful! You can speak to a counsellor over a message for up to an hour once a week! The people are really nice and make you feel like you aren’t alone and they are really there for you. 10/10 recommend it.”

“I had my counselling through Kooth and it helped  it was a while ago tho”

“I’ve heard really positive reviews about Kooth, although it’s not available in all areas (not in mine, anyway). I would echo the suggestion above – Childline is great as well if you don’t find Kooth helpful/if you’ve already used your one hour once a week”

“Hi, this is a really late comment but I 100% recommend Kooth. I’ve been speaking to the same counsellor for about a year and half and could not be happier. Admittedly I am still struggling but counsellors can’t change our lives. We have to do it ourselves. But, if you are looking for support and maybe just someone to talk to when things aren’t feeling so great then Kooth is just brilliant. You can have an hour session a week with a counsellor and you can message the team as much as you need throughout the rest of the week. You can write magazine articles explaining your struggles and read how others have managed to cope. There’s also live forums where loads of users come together to discuss different topics. It really is absolutely fantastic.”

“I’ve used kooth, and I do find it effective, the counsellors seem really nice. And it feels good to help others on the discussion forum. I’m sure it would help you as well”

“I totally agree , I was scared and needed help and they said I wasn’t able to talk to anyone and there was still 20 mins till closing time and I was in urgent need. Childline is soooooo much better !”

“Kooth is honestly garbage. The counsellors speak in such manners that it makes you feel like you’re talking to a bot or someone completely unqualified. The sessions hardly help, and you have to wait for literal HOURS in the queue. Don’t bother. Use an alternative.”

“For me it’s not good. It’s really rubbish. The counsellors seemed like they didn’t care”

Childline

Childline is another service similar to kooth, and it also seeks to help children and young people with their mental health issues.

According to the childline website, you can talk in a community of like-minded individuals or you can talk to a counselor, and they offer call services as well as web services.

Childline also offers articles and games about mental health, so that they can spread awareness and post the relevant mental health information that they think young people need to have, and one may find a lot of information here.

Here are some reviews for childline:

“I was a bad kid. At like 14-16 I was SH badly. I spoke to them when I had no one else. I didn’t want anyone to know. They never sent out an ambulance or reported it. They just spoke to me. They understand they’re very good at what they do.”

“I can hear how alone you feel. I don’t know much about Kooth, but I can also highly recommend Childline as an alternative! I’m a volunteer counselor for them and I think it’s a wonderful service.

Here’s some info:

– up to age 19

– free phone, 24/7 (and won’t show up on phone bills)

– really useful website with message boards and loads of info and advice

– if you make an account, you can have an online -1-2-1 chat with a counselor

– confidential most of the time unless you’re in serious danger etc.

feel free to ask me any other questions!”

Kooth Adult: Qwell

There is also an adult mental healthcare service by kooth, which is known as Qwell, and it was started in 2018.

According to Koothplc.com, which is the newest XenZone platform to consolidate all their services:

“Mental Health is one the largest challenges for Global Public Health. 1 in 4 adults experience mental health issues. At Kooth, we believe access to immediate high quality mental health care is a right, not a privilege.

Qwell.io is commissioned by NHS, Local Authorities and Charities to improve the mental health of entire populations of specific cohorts. Adults accessing Qwell can do so without the waiting lists or thresholds often associated with traditional services. They can join online peer support communities, access self-help materials or engage in drop-in or booked one-to-one online chat sessions with our experienced counsellors.

Qwell works in partnership with traditional community health providers and provides links and pathways to traditional and specialist face-to-face services.”

Quell provides significant mental health services to adults all over the UK.

Free Counselling Services

There are some other mental healthcare services as well, that one can call in the UK or visit the website, and these are as follows:

Shout

Shout is the UK’s first 24/7 text service, free on all major mobile networks, for anyone in crisis anytime, anywhere. We can help with urgent issues such as: suicidal thoughts, abuse or assault, self-harm, bullying and relationship challenges

Text Shout to 85258

(https://www.giveusashout.org/)

“Mental Health Matters

Helpline for people with mental health problems, their carers, families and friends. The Team can offer emotional guidance and information and help people who may be feeling low, anxious or stressed or in extreme emotional distress and feel that there is nowhere else to turn. Support is also provided to people caring for another person and finding it difficult to cope. The service is confidential unless it is considered there is a risk to yourself or others. Webchat available 24/7

Phone: click here to find the different numbers for the geographical areas covered Email: [email protected]

Supportline

We offer confidential emotional support to children, young adults and adults by telephone, email and post. We work with callers to develop healthy, positive coping strategies, an inner feeling of strength and increased self esteem to encourage healing, recovery and moving forward with life.

Phone: 01708 765200 (hours variable – ring for details)

Email: [email protected]

The Silver Line

The Silver Line operates the only confidential, free helpline for older people across the UK that’s open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days of the year. We also offer telephone friendship where we match volunteers with older people based on their interests,  facilitated group calls, and help to connect people with local services in their area.

Phone: 0800 4 70 80 90

Email: [email protected]

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we discussed Kooth: a guide, and review. We also discussed how counselling has progressed in the era of instant messaging and how many new ways there are to communicate with therapists, like free online counselling services.

Kooth is just another one of the great free online counselling services that have changed the face of online mental health support, both because of the ongoing lockdown and even before it.

If you are in need of counselling or want to try to talk to someone online, you can certainly try kooth, as it has been shown to have great promise.

If you have any questions or comments about Kooth, please feel free to reach out to us at any time.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Kooth guide and review

What is Kooth?

Kooth is a mental health care service that is based online and attends to young people below the age of 21.

Is there a service like Kooth in the US?

No, there isn’t a service exactly like Kooth in the US, but there are online mental health care services in the US as well, like 7 cups of tea and Supportiv, where one can go to get the mental health related help they need.

Does Kooth work with the NHS?

Yes, Kooth has been working with the NHS for about 15 years, pretty much from the start, to provide the highest level of healthcare possible to everyone under the age of 21.

Citations

https://www.kooth.com

https://www.theguardian.com/social-care-network/2014/may/16/day-in-life-online-counsellor

https://www.towerhamletsccg.nhs.uk/our-work/kooth-online-counselling-for-young-people.htm

Divya is currently a Clinical Psychology Trainee in a Master of Philosophy program and holds a Master’s in clinical psychology. She has a special interest in Personality studies and disorders, having researched the subject before, and Neuropsychology; with an additional interest being Mood disorders. She likes to write about Psychiatric issues, having worked in multiple specialty setups during her time as a clinical psychology student, and in her free time she likes to cook and read.