Therapy is the attempt to treat a medical condition after carrying out an extensive medical exam. You can use therapy on its own or as part of a complete plan to deal with health problems. There are various types of therapy, but this guide will focus on the aspect that deals with mental health.
Therefore, in this context, therapy refers to specialized treatment methods that use the study of behavior as the foundation. The goals of these treatments are to help a person improve their mood, change behavior, and overcome specific health problems.
Therapy can help manage numerous issues, including troublesome behaviors, beliefs, thoughts, and compulsions. Other aspects that therapy can help with are more positive and improved emotions and social skills.
Doctors have designed various therapy types that target adults, children and teenagers, couples, and even families. Therapy may involve many techniques such as one-to-one, family, or group sessions that include other sufferers. An example of group session therapy is an AA group meeting for people recovering from alcohol abuse.
Health experts such as mental health nurses, marriage and family counselors, social workers, etc., can be therapists. They may also come from other backgrounds, but the most important thing is that they are licensed and experienced.
As we have established, therapy involves specialized assistance given to people with mental health issues. As the name implies, online therapy provides this assistance without physical meetings. Experts may provide this assistance via phone calls, video conferencing, or even text and email exchanges.
Today, online therapy has become popular because many people work long hours or do not have the time. Online therapy may also be cheaper, easy to access, and more convenient than in-person therapy. So, if you suffer from anxiety or other mental health problems, online therapy is an email or phone call away. Because they are online, therapists can provide their services 24/7, which is a great advantage.
Also, being able to talk to a therapist from the comfort of your home means you can express yourself better. This freedom also means your therapist can fully understand your problems and provide the right solutions. The crucial thing about online therapy is honesty so that your therapist does not get a confusing prognosis.
Therefore, if you wish to use online therapy, we have listed seven of the best you can try.
Our Top Picks for the Best Online Therapy Platforms in 2022
- Calmerry – Best customer experience
- Online-Therapy.com – Best online therapy that can provide medication
- Talk Space – Best online therapy covered by insurance
- Better Help -Most affordable online care
- Regain – Best online therapy for couples
#1. Calmerry – Best customer experience
Although Calmerry is a new online therapy platform, it has quickly become one of the best on the market. The owners set up the company in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting mental health issues.
Calmerry boasts a pleasant website that is well designed and easy to use, with colors separating each section of information. There are links to customer support contact details, including phone numbers and emails. There are also links to the company’s active social media accounts, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Calmerry provides a range of services, including offering therapy to the oft underserved LGBTQIA persons.
Hand-picked therapists: The platform possesses a team of experienced members on hand to carefully select a therapist for you. This careful selection by hand ensures that your therapist is a good match for you.
Broad FAQ section: Calmerry boasts an FAQ section that answers many questions that you may have. There are questions and answers about the company and how it can help you, privacy, and other essential details.
Active social media accounts: Calmerry has active social media accounts, unlike many online therapy providers. The accounts include Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn, and it often posts on these platforms. It invites its clients to engage with them while providing valuable resources actively.
Resourceful blog: Calmerry has a creative blog that often posts helpful articles. Some articles cover topics such as taking care of your mental health and the importance of therapy. The blog is a nice touch and makes for good reading material between talking to your therapist.
- Flexible scheduling
- Helpful resources on the blog
- Active social media presence
- Responsive customer support
- No group therapy
- Live sessions are short
#2. Online-Therapy.com – Best online therapy that can provide medication
Founded in 2009, Online-Therapy is one of the oldest on our list of best online therapy providers. They have been around for so long, which is further proof of the quality of therapy that they provide.
The website is well designed and packs a lot of valuable resources that you have access to even before registering. Signing up is simple and only requires answering a few questions about your mental health. The service will also ask about your preference for what therapist you want and your preferred discussion method.
This online therapy platform boasts a rich bouquet of licensed counselors providing solutions to various mental health problems.
A vast library of resources: There is a section on the website called the toolbox containing helpful resources. You get access to this toolbox with its array of valuable self-help tools when you sign up. There are journals, worksheets, action planners, yoga, and several other CBT resources included in the library.
Flexible subscription plans: This online therapy platform offers various subscriptions. The base plan provides daily messages with your therapists and access to the toolbox and its rich resources. The other premium plans guarantee quick responses, messages with no limits and no restrictions, and several live sessions weekly.
Qualified therapists: All the therapists on the platform are licensed and authorized to practice in their states. There are experts and mental health counselors, marriage therapists, and clinical social workers. In addition, the therapists all have three years of experience or a minimum of 2000 clinical hours. This focus on experience assures that you will get quality service from them.
Unique privacy policies: Apart from being HIPAA compliant, Online-Therapy.com uses end-to-end encryption for all messages on its platform. The company guarantees not to disclose any data to third parties except in legal cases or with your permission. You are also allowed to download your medical records if you wish.
- Reasonable subscription prices
- Valuable added resources
- Therapist’s bios are on the website
- Discount on the first month’s subscription
- No group therapy
- No Couple’s therapy
#3. Talkspace – Best online therapy covered by insurance
Talkspace is one of the earliest online therapy providers, and it began operations in 2012. The company aims to break the stigma of mental health problems and make help more accessible to anyone. Talkspace is now one of the most well-known online therapy companies endorsed by many superstars.
The website has a modern design and a simple layout that is easy to use. After signing up, there are various options, including couples and teen therapy, from thousands of licensed counselors.
Although Talkspace manages a range of issues, it is notable for its focus on psychiatry. It helps people manage depression, stress, anger, substance abuse issues, and other mental health problems.
Accepts Insurance: Talkspace is one of the few top online therapy providers that accept insurance, albeit from limited vendors. You can check if you are entitled, although the coverage is dependent on the type of insurance plan you have. Talkspace also accepts many companies’ Employee Assistance Programs, making it an excellent online therapy provider.
Flexible subscription plans: Talkspace offers multiple and flexible subscription plans, with the basic one offering no live sessions. The more premium subscriptions provide varying numbers of live video sessions for the month. It is crucial to note that unused live sessions will not roll over to the next month. For this reason, you must utilize live video sessions within the month, or you will lose them.
Free Consultation: Although there are no free sessions, Talkspace allows you to consult with therapists for a limited time for free. You will get the chance to speak with an adviser to answer some questions and help you get started. This feature is essential because it lets you have a feel of the services before you make a decision.
Wide range of services: There is a range of convenient and accessible mental health services on the platform. Talkspace offers couples and teen counseling, drug management for depression, stress, premarital counseling, and other issues. Talkspace is also a good option for teens, college students, and people with busy schedules.
- Accepts insurance
- Offers drug management services
- Allows you to change therapist at any time
- 24/7 access
- Offers couples therapy
- No group therapy
- No therapist bios
#4. BetterHelp – Most affordable online care
BetterHelp is one of the largest and most diverse online therapy providers. Beginning operations in 2013, the counseling platform connects users to a myriad of therapists and various services. The service uses several methods, from family therapy to therapy that focuses on behavior, trauma, and motivation.
BetterHelp will pair you with therapists based on your needs, and these therapists cover a wide range of problems. Some of the issues covered by BetterHelp include anxiety, depression, trauma, anger management, and addiction. Other areas covered are sleeping problems, career issues, grief, coping with drastic life changes, and intimacy problems.
The signup process is simple, and you quickly gain access to a vast network of licensed therapists. One of the best features of BetterHelp is getting you matched to a therapist in less than 24 hours.
Financial Aid: BetterHelp offers financial aid and discounts to those that qualify after an appeal via a provided link. The form asks questions about your employment status, monthly income, military service, number of children, etc. This feature is excellent if the cost of traditional therapy is an issue or you are on a budget.
Experienced therapists: All the therapists on BetterHelp are not only licensed but authorized as well. BetterHelp requires at least three years of experience, 1000 hours of which must be hands-on. Clinical social workers, marriage and family therapists, mental health counselors, and licensed professional counselors are also present.
Also, all the therapists hold either a master’s degree or a doctorate in their fields. This focus on licenses, experience, and education ensures that you will get quality service from BetterHelp. In addition, the website lists the therapist’s experience level and education, so you are aware of them from the beginning.
The matching process: When you sign up on BetterHelp, you answer a few questions to create a profile. The platform then uses a unique algorithm to find the perfect therapist to match your needs. This method is ingenious and makes the process quick, as you can finish the signup in under fifteen minutes. However, if you are not satisfied with the provided therapist, you can request a change of counselor from your profile. Also, you can manually search for a therapist and select from the results.
The number of therapists: At BetterHelp, there are over 21,000 licensed and vetted professionals. This wealth of options means that there will always be a suitable option if you ever choose to switch therapists.
- Mobile app is efficient
- Financial aid for qualified users
- A vast network of therapists
- Simple signup and matching process
- You can message your therapist at any time
- No counseling for children
- Does not offer prescriptions
#5. ReGain -Best online therapy for couples
ReGain is an online therapy provider founded in 2016 and focuses on relationship problems. There is access to over 8000 qualified therapists on its platform for a reasonable fee and convenient schedule.
Signing up is pretty simple, and there are a few questions about the problems you are facing and your goals. The questions also cover if you prefer to focus on conflict settlement skills, parenting, separation mediation, etc. Other areas you can focus on include marriage issues, dealing with adultery, setting boundaries, and dealing with breakups or divorce.
This online therapy service offers a single monthly subscription plan, and the price usually depends on your match or location. The subscription is a general one that allows you to discuss with your chosen therapist alone or with your partner. If you begin the therapy alone, you can add your partner at any time with no effect on the price.
Enlightening website: On its website, ReGain has a library of helpful resources about improving relations with your partner or relative. The library includes helpful blog posts and articles that have been reviewed or fact-checked by licensed therapists. These reviews mean that you can rest assured that the resources are factual and up-to-date.
Customer support: The therapy services’ website has an extensive Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) section that deals with a myriad of issues. The questions cover topics such as the therapy process, pricing and subscriptions, privacy and steps, and the therapist’s skills. If you are not satisfied, you can get further support by filling out a form or sending an email. The therapy provider takes its users’ feedback, complaints, and suggestions seriously, so their response time is quick.
Special discounts: ReGain offers special discounts to select groups of people. From time to time, the company provides special promo codes that can trigger discounts when you sign up. Also, military veterans and college students can get deals if they declare this status on registration. Furthermore, if you face financial hardship and cannot pay the going rates, you can apply for financial assistance.
Privacy policies: There is a lot of concern about users’ data, so ReGain takes its protection seriously. All details you tell your therapist will not be shared, making you feel more comfortable talking to them. The platform hosts its servers on high-grade data centers, which are correctly protected. Apart from being encrypted, you can “shred” messages if you no longer wish them to be visible on the site. However, if you want any of your records released to a third party, you can notify your therapist.
- Subscriptions are reasonably priced
- Modern and easy to use platform
- Impressive privacy policies
- Responsive customer support
- Library of resources is helpful
- No therapist bios
- Matching with a therapist can be impersonal
What We Looked For When We Picked The Best Sites For Online Therapy?
Below are some of the critical areas we considered when making this list of best online therapy.
- Licensing: Because of the delicate nature of therapy, we ensured that the online therapy we chose was licensed. There is a licensing process that therapists and mental health experts must undertake to provide quality service. Using a licensed therapist will also ensure that the codes of ethics and other laws cover you. The providers we selected all had a good reputation for having the best therapists across disciplines. The therapists are all licensed and qualified to practice.
- Delivery methods: Our selection of online therapy providers have efficient delivery methods that are also convenient. Online therapy vendors can deliver therapy via various channels, including phone calls, text messaging, and emails. There are convenient methods that can also be more personal, such as live chats and video conferencing. We chose online therapists that provided several options ao you can pick which works best for you.
- Languages offered: The best online therapy vendor expects that its customers may come from other countries and speak different languages. Many vendors provide their services in as many as thirty different languages to cater to more customers. In making this list, we ensured that our selections had several languages with which you could engage them.
- Pricing: Therapy can be expensive for many, so as part of our criteria, we ensured that our picks were reasonable. However, it is essential to note that cheap does not always mean good. If you pay a low price, you may get limited services. For example, a lower price may only get you a few minutes of phone calls or limited text messages. The picks on our list offered good value for money, with reasonable offerings at their cheaper subscription options.
Factors To Consider Before Entering Online Therapy Sessions:
Online therapy can be convenient and sometimes cheaper than physical meetings. However, before you decide to use online therapy and choose a provider, you must consider a few things.
- Privacy and Security
- Convenient Communication Channels
The best online therapy service will provide several convenient channels via which you can talk to a therapist. Ensure that your chosen therapy provider grants you access to live videos, chats, emails, and telephone calls. Most online therapy services will provide unlimited text messages between you and a counselor. These various options also guarantee that you can be more relaxed when talking to your therapist.
- Special Services
Many people require services that may not be readily accessible, and some online therapy services note this. For example, LGBTQIA persons are often an underserved segment of society. They are abused and subjected to violence, thus, tend to need counseling as much as or more than other people.
Also, some services focus on teenagers, who are another group of people that are underserved in mental health discussions. Therefore, you must consider your unique needs when deciding on online therapy and how the provider can best serve you.
- Read User Reviews
The best way to know about the quality of online therapy services is by reading reviews from verified users. You can search online for these reviews and read what users discuss concerning your chosen online therapy service. Some websites will also rate online therapy services based on specific criteria, including safety, cost, convenience, and quality. For example, an online therapy service may get 5 stars, indicating excellent services.
- Check For Licensed And Experienced Therapists
In choosing an online therapy provider, you should ensure that the therapists on the platforms are all licensed to practice. Also, they must have the requisite training, character, and experience for counselors. The best online therapy providers will require that therapists have at least 3 years of practical experience. They may also request counselors who have at least a master’s degree and sometimes a Ph.D. in relevant disciplines. It is important to consider these factors, as licensed and experienced counselors will ensure that you get quality services.
Few online therapy providers accept insurance for their services, so note that you may have to pay out-of-pocket for therapy. Some may also partner with companies to provide Employee Assistance Programs, offer discounts, or provide financial aid. Military veterans, unemployed [ersons, and other deserving people may qualify for assistance. Therefore, in choosing a provider, ensure that if there are no unique offerings, then the price is reasonable.
FAQs Regarding Online Therapy & Therapist
Is online therapy discrete?
Most people refer to online therapy as Telehealth, and it must comply with ethics and standards like in-person therapies. Many of them also use high-level encryption to protect your messages and data on their websites. In addition, the HIPAA Act in the United States ensures that providers do not disclose clients’ data without their permission.
How does online therapy work?
Online therapy providers will conduct counseling using telephone, unlimited messaging therapy, and video tools. The tool you use will depend on the provider’s offerings or your preference. Some platforms offer a limited number of timed live videos monthly and the option of messaging a therapist any time.
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Is online therapy effective?
Online therapy is an effective counseling method because of the convenience it affords users. It is also helpful when users are busy and cannot take the time to commute to physical locations. In addition, laws require the same ethics as in-person therapists so that you can get the same quality of service.
Can I access online therapy on my mobile phone?
You can access websites of many online therapy services on mobile devices, and they provide all the premium features. Many of them also have Android and Apple mobile apps, with which you can connect with therapists. These mobile accesses ensure that you can get counseling on the go and at your convenience.
Which format is best for online therapy- video, phone, or chat?
The best format to connect to an online therapist depends on your needs and preference. You may realize that you express yourself better when you text or are more relaxed during a live video conference. In addition, you may be happier talking to a therapist on the telephone.
Can online therapists prescribe drugs for me?
Laws concerning prescription drugs limit what online therapists can prescribe for you. Online therapists will not prescribe medicines controlled by the Drug Enforcement Agency. However, online therapists can prescribe high blood pressure drugs, mild painkillers, and some drugs that treat depression.
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Concluding – Are Online Therapists Worth It?
Many people suffer from mental health issues, including depression and stress, and may require some form of therapy. There are also certain groups of people who may be underserved in counseling. These groups may include teenagers and members of the LGBTQIA community, many of whom suffer from abuse and violence.
It is not always convenient for many people to get counseling because of many factors. These factors include distance to travel to counseling, price, stigma, and the quality of the services provided. Sometimes, people may not be comfortable sharing their problems during in-person cognitive behavioral therapy sessions.
Online therapy provides a viable option for many people, as it solves many existing problems of in-person therapy. People can get treatment from the comfort of their homes and at their convenience. This comfort can further ensure that the counseling they get is more effective.
In conclusion, the best online therapy service is one that gives you quality counseling and premium services.