Where To Find the Best Free Online Therapy And Why It Matters

Updated August 17, 2021

Introduction To Online Therapy For Mental Health

Are you struggling with chronic mental health disorders like anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and trying to find relief? If you’re experiencing chronic mental health issues like the ones listed above, you may find yourself searching for free online therapy or online therapy chat to find relief. You may be surprised to find that you’re not alone in your search. Over 43 million Americans in the United States experience symptoms of mental illness annually.

As the stigma surrounding mental health begins to change, many people are waking up to the importance of taking good care of their mental health to have a healthy and productive life. In this article, we discuss options for finding the best online therapy, provide resources on where you can get free online therapy for depression, and give you the scoop on one of the best online therapy apps that can introduce you to the concept of online therapy.

What Is Online Therapy? Can A Therapist Or Psychologist Really Treat Someone Online?

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Online therapy (or online counseling) is a service by mental health professionals that allows over a million people to access mental health services from across the globe. Patients who struggle with depression, anxiety, addictions, and relationship conflicts can easily contact licensed therapists from anywhere in the world. You can enjoy the best mental health services from the comfort of your home. Online counseling platforms like BetterHelp, Talkspace, Pride Counseling, and many more offer impressive and affordable online counseling services to their clients. Therapists can hold face-to-face conversations with their clients through the internet.

Patients can easily locate a licensed mental health professional through the internet. They are saved the discomfort of long trips to the therapists’ office and can easily contact their therapists on the mobile during life-threatening situations. They can access mental health professionals that can help them using various therapies like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), Eye Movement Desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), psychotherapy, and many more.

People can easily find a licensed therapist that is peculiar to their needs in saved time. For example, a person seeking to build a better intimate relationship with their spouse can easily access marriage and family therapists with a click of the hand. They are provided with the best family therapists across the world and can easily set up a couple’s therapy. Even though they may not be in the same location, the couple can easily have a live video session with their licensed therapist. Although some may be skeptical about the pros and cons of online therapy, vast research, testimonies, and reviews from clients across the world proves that online therapy is a trusted means of accessing therapy and is equally effective. Online counseling has a whole lot of benefits that make it easier for people to access licensed mental health care professionals from across the world.

Let’s get started with what you get when you search for the best free online counseling.

Best Free Online Therapy Sites To Speak With A Therapist Or Psychologist

The online therapy platforms in this section provide free access to therapy in the forms of free counseling consultations, free online therapy sessions, free trials, or by providing free access to online self-guided resources. It’s important to note the distinction between licensed and board-certified therapists who provide therapeutic care – and experts who have been trained in the art of providing general advice. You may need to access a free online therapy chat consultation with a licensed therapy provider if your symptoms require therapeutic intervention.

This is especially true in the case of chronic mental illnesses like anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Over 40 million people in the United States are living with mental health symptoms annually, with anxiety and depression listed as the top two mental illnesses. When it comes to the number of cases reported annually – depression and anxiety are followed closely by eating disorders and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Chronic mental health disorders like these require trauma-informed care with licensed and trained professionals who can recognize the appropriate treatments, medications, and resources to provide based on their client’s condition. The following are leading mental health sites that you’re likely to come across when you do a Google search for the “best free online therapy sites.”

BetterHelp

This is one of the world’s leading (and largest) therapy providers online. BetterHelp.com boasts a staff of over 14,000 licensed therapists and clients can access their platform online directly and by logging in to the therapy app. The therapists at BetterHelp are psychologists, licensed professional counselors, marriage and family therapists, and licensed clinical social workers. This platform’s therapists can provide a wide variety of counseling services including services for individuals, couples, and families. Clients can easily access mental health professionals that would help them with depression, anxiety, and other mental health-related issues. With a wide range of professional counselors, licensed clinical social workers, family therapists clients available at their disposal, clients can easily select licensed therapists that would suit their mental health needs.

BetterHelp is known as one of the leading therapy platforms due to its’ ease of use, affordability, and live video chat features. BetterHelp rates range from $60 to $90 per week (billed every 4 weeks) for unlimited messaging sessions with a therapist that is available to answer questions daily, seven days a week. This includes one weekly live session with your therapist.

ReGain

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ReGain.us is another one of the leading therapy platforms that have been voted the best platform for couples. ReGain specializes in providing couples and relationship therapy for married and dating couples. Couples who use ReGain therapy report high levels of success in the improvement of their relationships after applying the strategies and techniques learned in therapy. Couples therapy is an effective way to build emotional connection and intimacy between couples, and Regain offers a unique platform to make this a reality.

The costs for ReGain couples therapy are comparable to the starting costs of BetterHelp.com and range between $60.00 – $90.00 per week. Couples using the platform also have 24-hour access to login and chat with licensed and certified relationship providers who specialize in counseling for dating, marriage, and intimate relationships. This couples-focused site is available to provide services individually, couples sessions, and has resources for access to other online couples resources to help the counseling process along.

Talkspace

Talkspace is another popular therapy provider that has become well-known for its popular celebrity spokesperson Micheal Phelps. This is online counseling platform (also accessible via their free therapy app) offers services similar to the previous platforms that we’ve mentioned – at a slightly higher cost. Talkspace has a staff of about 3000 therapists who provide online counseling services for individuals, couples, and families.

To get started with Talkspace services online, the cost starts at $65.00 – $99.00 per week. You have to be subscribed to the higher price plan on this platform to gain access to live-chat therapists on this platform. Many people like the Talkspace platform, but it’s not necessarily the best option available online for the price.

7 Cups Of Tea

7 Cups is a free peer-to-peer counseling platform that provides free online therapy sessions for people who need someone to talk to. The creators of 7 Cups of Tea understand that everyone may not be able to afford traditional therapy. This platform provides free access to trained listeners that provide non-therapeutic advice on its online platform.

This versatile free platform provides access to online support options for people of all age ranges. 7 Cups even has a separate support section that specializes in providing support for teens via age-appropriate teen listeners that have been trained to provide general advice. Suppose you need to go beyond the free options offered on the 7 Cups platform. In that case, you can upgrade your membership to a paid plan to be connected with licensed therapy providers, licensed clinical social workers that can provide you with a therapeutic level of support.

If you find that you need to go beyond the free options offered on the 7 Cups platform, you can upgrade your membership to a paid plan to be connected with licensed therapy providers that can provide you with a therapeutic level of support.

However, it’s important to note that if you need free emotional support, 7 Cups of Tea can connect you with trained, caring listeners for free. These listeners are generally not licensed therapists, so when it comes to treating mental illnesses like depression or anxiety, online therapy platforms may be a better option.

The Average Costs Of Therapy With A Therapist Or Psychologist

Now that you have some insight into today’s leading free and paid therapy providers, let’s dive further into the average costs of therapy. The following is a brief overview of what today’s therapy clients can expect to pay for therapy – depending on their chosen method and location.

In-Office Therapy Costs

The national average for getting in-office therapy in the United States ranges between $65.00 an hour and can go up to as much as $200.00 an hour to start. Sessions with in-office therapists are often scheduled by preference, provider health care referral, or other means. Cash-pay clients can expect to pay the full costs of in-office visits and can also expect to incur additional costs for gasoline, auto maintenance, and other fees that apply when they make the drive into the office for therapy. Health insurance benefits can cover the costs for behavioral health care (in some cases) under the Mental Health Parity Act of 2008.

Online Therapy Costs

The costs of online therapy are drastically lower than in-office therapy in the US. Online therapy costs range as low as a few dollars to an average of about $100.00 per week. Remember that the $100.00 end of the online therapy spectrum is more likely the exception – than the rule. The costs for seeing a therapist online include many benefits that visiting an in-office therapist can’t provide. People who go to therapy online save less on gas as they no longer have to attend therapy sessions in person – or have reduced the number of therapy sessions they need to attend in the office. Online mental health clients also gain access to 24-hour a day always on therapy support that an in-office therapist may not be able to provide.

Free Counseling Options

While there are free options available for therapy, they require a little more legwork to find than the options that we discussed above. Free options for therapy can normally be found with a quick Google search that is likely to yield offline results located in or near your neighborhood. Free options for getting therapy locally include your local Department of Public Health, Department of Family and Children’s Services, and private sliding-fee or reduced fee options that you can find locally. Limited free options for therapy are available online by using peer-to-peer counseling services like 7 Cups of Tea online.

Benefits Of Online Therapy

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People who get therapy online are finding out that the benefits are endless. Not only do you get to improve the quality of your life from the privacy and comfort of your own home – you have access to an affordable necessity that helps you to live a more balanced and productive life. As we begin to learn more about the importance of maintaining good mental health, we’re learning that the consequences of “not” taking care of our mental health can be detrimental.

Recently, we’ve learned that mental health is just as important as physical health. Without a combination of a harmonious mind and body, we may be limiting the amount of joy and happiness that we can experience in our lives. Getting therapy and learning how to pick yourself up after getting knocked down to develop mental toughness and resilience – is one of the best gifts that we can ever give ourselves. Having 24-hour access to therapy online can help make it easier.

Final Thoughts About Online Therapy

In this article, we’ve talked about the best free online therapy sites, the average costs of therapy, and the benefits of getting online therapy. Now that you have more information on how therapy works, how much it costs, and how vital therapy can be for maintaining good mental health – what will your next steps be?

If you’re ready to get started with maintaining better mental health with a licensed therapy professional, contact a therapy support specialist at BetterHelp.com to get started today!

If you need a free crisis hotline or want to learn more about therapy, please see below:

For more free information on mental health, please see:

Get Free Help Now

  • National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1- 800-799-7233
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
  • National Hopeline Network: 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433)
  • Crisis Text Line: Text “DESERVE” TO 741-741
  • Lifeline Crisis Chat (Online live messaging): https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/chat/
  • Self-Harm Hotline: 1-800-DONT CUT (366-8288)
  • Family Violence Helpline: 1-800-996-6228
  • Planned Parenthood Hotline: 1-800-230-PLAN (7526)
  • American Association of Poison Control Centers: 1-800-222-1222
  • National Council on Alcoholism & Drug Dependency Hope Line: 1-800-622-2255
  • National Crisis Line – Anorexia and Bulimia: 1-800-233-4357
  • LGBTQ+ Hotline: 1-888-843-4564
  • TREVOR Crisis Hotline: 1-866-488-7386
  • AIDS Crisis Line: 1-800-221-7044
  • Veterans Crisis Line: https://www.veteranscrisisline.net
  • TransLifeline: https://www.translifeline.org – 877-565-8860 APA Youtube
  • Suicide Prevention Wiki: http://suicideprevention.wikia.com

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