Traditional face-to-face psychotherapy has been around for many decades and it involves a person visiting their qualified therapist but with mental health issues on the rise (esp. due to Covid-19) and with internet bridging the gap between continents, everything has slowly become virtual and accessible with just a few clicks and that’s exactly what has happened with licensed psychotherapists as well.
With online counselling services, you can get the same level of commitment and privacy as with face-to-face therapy, and, with added bonuses too!
If scheduling, expense and urgency are your major pain points in starting therapy sessions, then consider subscribing to an online counselling services which gives you the access to get started with improving your mental health from real online counsellor via voice, video chat and messaging systems. It’s like having a telephone counselling but over the internet!
This is a developing feature where we will be adding more services so you can see how convenient online counselling can be!
How Online Counselling Sessions work?
All online counselling therapy services work more or less the same way; you signup, speak to an agent/bot about what your issues regarding mental health like eating disorder, addictive behaviour, self-esteem, self-harm or any other mental illness you may seem to be feeling.
Depending on the support service, you are then assigned to a qualified therapist. You then pay the fee and get started with your talking therapy.
Now the biggest dilemma here is what if you do not get along with your online counsellor, what then? Not to worry, like most face-to-face therapy, here too you are allowed to change your psychotherapist at no additional cost.
You may wonder if the whole online therapy thing even works? Yes it does! There have been many studies confirming that online medium is effective!
You can effectively shape your mental health with CBT, Hypnotherapy, relaxation techniques, mindfulness, talking therapy, art therapy or even EMDR.
A simple Google search will bring you the required results, studies & compliance by NHS and BACP.
Your next concern could be how do you communicate? Do you use Skype, webcam, video chat or just text, because it is online counselling. The answer is simple, there are text messages, audio notes and video chat – all of it is allowed via a secure platform. I have taken the liberty of mentioning everything with each online therapy service so you can weigh the pros and cons between each online counselling service yourself and decide which support services suits you the most.
ONLINE COUNSELLING SERVICES
The name speaks for itself.
MDLive Therapy is very specifically for mental illnesses. Simply signup for free and request to see a qualified therapist. You can select a time, date and even a psychotherapist if you know whom you are looking for.
Next step is basic questionnaire that you need to fill out like medical conditions, allergies, past surgeries if any, and then you fill out your payment information. Speaking of payment, you pay $108/- for your therapy sessions each.
Something worth mentioning here, if you are looking for a provider who can prescribe medication, then yes at MDLive some specialise in psychiatry and can write a prescription for non-narcotic medications (i.e. no controlled substances), which can be sent directly to the pharmacy of your choice. You should look at their FAQ
With the clean soothing interface and all the relevant information available to convince you that it’s a safe place to be yourself, TalkSpace comes highly recommended.
To start using their online therapy service, simply get started by their quick 60-second questionnaire.
Your messages are encrypted on their servers, and all communication between their softwares/apps and the servers are encrypted as well. Their technology is fully HIPAA compliant too.
Okay, now more about TalkSpace, once you are shown your options, select a certified therapist, pick a payment plan, and that’s it.
All therapists are fully licensed and already have over 3000 hours of clinical experience. TalkSpace has covered every question on their FAQ section, yet you can always reach them via phone or email.
For payment, they accept all major debit/credit cards. They do not have a free trial. Alternatively, if you are not happy with the therapist you have picked, you can ask them to pair you with another person. You can message your therapist 24/7 via iOS and Android apps. If you are not a messaging person, you can send voice recordings and/or video messages as well.
TalkSpace doesn’t require you to be in the USA or UK, you could be anywhere in the world and still be able to get therapy in this pandemic.
Our special links give $65 off on the first month. And their refer-a-friend program gives $50 off every time someone signs up using your special code.
BetterHelp works pretty much the same way TalkSpace does except that BetterHelp has just one (slightly expensive) package.
To get started, you have to answer some basic questions about your current well-being and within few minutes you are asked to create an account.
The plans cost between $60/Week to $80/Week and its charged to either your credit card or PayPal account. They used to have a free trial as well, but for some reason they removed it.
Now, if you are wondering what it is that you get in your package, then the answer is ‘unlimited counselling with your matched psychotherapist which by definition of their FAQ page is messaging via web platform and/or iOS/Android app, live chatting, speaking over the phone and video chatting as well.
If you are anything like me (hesitant & introvert), you will think a few times before typing in your payment info, which will then result in you being paired automatically with a licensed therapist!
So… look out for that email. The messaging area is neat and gives you the option for basic styling, adding attachments, marking a message ‘urgent’ and, a drop down menu for scheduling a live session with your therapist. Even if you haven’t paid for the therapist, this message will showcase his/her license and some credentials that you can Google further.
BetterHelp allows you to change your therapist if you are not satisfied with the current match.
Good Therapy works more like an information and resource centre than a service where you get paired with a therapist. On the upside, they have a huge directory of licensed therapists in many countries round the world such as Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists, Licensed Clinical Social Workers and Licensed Addiction Counselors. The profile of each person is extensive and you can see their rates, contact information, services they provide, types of therapies performed and links to private practice (if any). Like any good listing website, Good Therapy gives memberships to licensed professionals who wishes to be part of their reputed listing.
And that’s our very short list of online counselling services for mental health that we have so far tested out!
Since this is a developing feature, we will be adding more overviews or reviews of where online psychologist are giving therapy sessions and online marriage counselling sessions.
Since our current list is very small, please give us your recommendations in the comments bellow and we will mention them in our feature without mentioning your name 🙂