BetterHelp is one of the largest and most accredited online therapy platforms giving you access to more than 12,000 experienced mental health professionals. You can feel confident about the therapist you work with through BetterHelp therapists, thanks to experience requirements and a thorough research process. Each therapist has a minimum of three years and 1000 hours of practical experience. Talkspace is one of the most versatile online therapy platforms with various communication methods, therapy options and pricing.
With Talkspace, you get a message-based therapy that is a great option for those who are comfortable sharing via video or have a changing schedule that can't commit to weekly sessions. Pride Counseling, a subsidiary of BetterHelp, provides inclusive and accessible virtual counseling specialized to the LGBTQIA+ community to address issues such as gender identity, stigma, eating disorders and stress. Every therapist you come across when you use Pride Counseling has extensive experience working with the LGBTQIA+ community. Regain, a sister site of BetterHelp, is a virtual therapy platform with experts specializing in relationships, intimacy and family issues.
That's why it's our choice for the best online therapy for couples counseling. All ReGain therapists are licensed and have degrees as licensed marriage and family therapists or clinical social workers. TalkSpace positions itself as one of the leading online therapy platforms with its welcoming environment and wide range of services. He has made a name for himself in psychiatry, helping more than a million people treat anxiety, depression, anger and substance abuse problems.
You can start with a plan for individuals or couples. It's very difficult to be a person, and therapy can help. When you can't access an in-person therapist, video appointments can be just as effective. Online therapy services can even make the process of finding someone to talk to easier by expanding the number of licensed mental health professionals you can choose from, eliminating the need to go to a physical facility for an appointment, and perhaps even reducing out-of-pocket costs.
After spending more than 75 hours of research over three years and testing appointments on six platforms, we recommend that you start your search for a therapist online with Amwell. Teladoc offers a safe and nationally accredited video therapy platform, with more total therapist options than Amwell, but lacks the ability to hide the view of your own face on screen. The Doctor On Demand platform also meets our basic security and accreditation requirements, but sessions cost almost twice what they cost through Amwell, and you can't hide your face on screen. Our tests provided an opportunity to examine the processes and video interfaces of each online therapy platform for ease of use and overall convenience, as well as to get an idea of what it is like to see a therapist online.
Although only Amwell offers the option of hiding your own video (so that the therapist can continue watching it, but you can't see yourself), with other services you can always place a sticky note over the part of the screen that shows it, as suggested by a therapist from another platform to one of our testing panels. Psychologists cannot prescribe medication. For prescription drugs, you should contact a health care provider capable of prescribing medications, such as a psychiatrist. Since psychiatrists tend not to provide therapy, most health professionals suggest seeing both a psychiatrist and a psychologist if you (or your therapist) think you might benefit from medications.
Ideally, the two professionals work together and be able to share notes on your progress. Amwell, Teladoc, MDLive and Doctor On Demand offer a separate, more expensive option for people who want to see a psychiatrist (and possibly prescribe or administer medication), while neither BetterHelp nor Talkspace have a separate option to see a psychiatrist specifically. If you feel uncomfortable or disgusted with a therapist's services, all of our picks provide ways to report questionable practices. Amwell makes it easy to change status to see providers and book appointments elsewhere, a benefit for those who travel frequently and want to plan therapy sessions for when they are in different states (licensed therapists are required by law to provide therapy only to patients in states where they are licensed).
If your therapy experience is in any way deficient (something one of our evaluators experienced on this platform), a complaint to Amwell initiates an investigation by its quality management team, according to a company representative, which “determines whether the concern appears to be valid and the severity of the offense. If an Amwell therapist thinks you would benefit from additional testing or care, they can refer you to another specialist within the platform. During our tester's therapy session, held on a computer, multiple distracting push notifications from the Teladoc app appeared on the tester's phone, reminding the tester to log in to his appointment even when he was already talking to the therapist. You can disable notifications after the initial configuration of the application.
Like our other options, Teladoc accepts some insurance and also offers virtual access to all types of medical specialists. Like Amwell, MDLive makes it easy to switch between states to see providers and book appointments in different states. If you are in a state other than the state in which you are booking an appointment, MDLive asks you to confirm what state you are in and suggests that you switch to the state you are currently in, but that doesn't prevent you from booking an appointment in another state. The Doctor On Demand registration page has a field for the genre labeled “other”, a feature that makes this platform feel a little more inclusive than Amwell's.
While online therapy is a much newer form of therapy, current evidence suggests that for many people it can be as effective as face-to-face therapy. Talking from the safety of your own home can even make it easier for you to open up about your problems. Online therapy also allows you to reach a qualified specialist from anywhere in the world, while avoiding the expense, travel time and hassle of having to meet in person. Individuals seeking personal growth and children of alcoholics can also benefit from the online therapy format, according to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology.
Monument is the only online therapy service dedicated exclusively to alcohol use disorders, recovery and associated mental health conditions. This online therapy platform is specifically designed to address relationship issues, whether you are coming together as a couple or on your own. Although online therapy is a relatively new way of providing mental health care, so far, research has shown that it is an effective way to treat a variety of common mental health problems. Online therapy is the provision of professional mental health counseling over the Internet, usually through live video chat, messaging app, email or by phone.
The messaging aspect of some online therapy services can also be useful for tracking your progress and monitoring any setbacks. While not the right solution for everyone, online therapy, also known as telehealth, is quickly becoming one of the main ways people seek mental health services. Sesame is one of the best online therapy platforms if you want to talk to a therapist on demand, don't have insurance and need a prescription. Despite the benefits of online counseling, in-person therapy may be more appropriate for some circumstances and individuals.
The online therapy platforms on this list follow federal guidelines under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) for encrypting information and maintaining the privacy of health data. Trained listeners are counselors who have no professional training in psychotherapy, but who have been trained in listening techniques by the online therapy company that employs them. Unlike many other online mental health services, Teladoc can connect people with licensed psychiatrists who can provide medication administration, a huge advantage for therapy seekers who don't have the time, energy or ability to find a psychiatrist on another service. To maintain compliance, online therapy platforms must use HIPAA compliant systems, such as encrypted video software.
The convenience and flexibility of online therapy quickly make it one of the most popular ways to connect with mental health professionals. . .