“Online therapy allows you to meet with your therapist online using a HIPAA-compliant platform,” explains Dr. Tracy W. Lowenthal, a registered clinical psychologist in California.
It is also known as telemental health care and is usually done using a messaging app, video chat, or even the phone.
According to multimodal therapist Marilyn Denovish, “online therapy may be just as beneficial, and sometimes even more successful, than traditional face-to-face services” since it is available via an Internet connection and a device, and in a situation where cost is minimized, its win win.
This is because it may be easier for people to open up to a therapist when they can do it from the comfort of their own home.
Can Free Online Therapy Truly Be Beneficial?
Several studies have found that free internet treatment can be just as beneficial (if not better) than traditional forms of therapy. It all relies on how successfully your therapist and treatment plan meet your requirements.
For example, 2020 research published in the Journal of American College Health on goal setting and problem solving discovered that both in-person and online treatment lowered anxiety similarly.
Using online counseling programs like 7 Cups and ReGain can be highly useful, depending on the person and the circumstances.
What issues may free online counseling assist with?
Free internet counselling can assist with the following ailments and feelings:
Fatigue or Stress,
Worry or Anxiety,
However, keep in mind that these programs are not appropriate for emergency circumstances or more serious conditions such as addiction or eating disorders. Furthermore, some disorders may necessitate medication, in-person conversations, or group therapy.
How did we select the greatest therapeutic services at reasonable prices?
We choose each free or low-cost online counseling service based on essential criteria to guarantee that the mental health care provided is:
We also looked at how long you had to wait for an appointment, if the business provides 24/7 help, and whether it provides video and phone chat, live chat, and text messaging.
Choosing an Online Therapy Service
When selecting an online treatment service, keep your mental health requirements in mind. Service cost, insurance coverage, and appointment kinds available (chat, video, or phone call) will all help you choose the best online counseling service for your specific requirements and lifestyle.
A Comparison of The Most Effective Free and Low-Cost Online Counseling Options
|Therapy Service||Price||Appointment type||Accept Insurance||Same day appointments/On demand messaging|
|7 CUPS||Chatting with volunteer listeners is free, but speaking with a professional cost $150 per month.||Chat||No||Yes|
|Doctor on Demand||Therapy costs between $129 and $179 each session, with first psychiatrist sessions costing $299 and 15minute follow-ups costing $129.||Video||Yes||No|
|ReGain||One-week free trial to from $60 per week||Chat
|Therapy Aid||Free to $50 per session||Video||NA||No|
Healthline’s Suggestions for The Top Seven Free and Low-Cost Online Treatment Services
Best for Teens – 7 Cups
Volunteer listeners are provided with free access.
- For kids aged 13 to 17
- there are free specialized chat rooms and community support forums.
- messages on demand
Professional help must be paid for; insurance is not accepted; and only chat-based treatment is available.
Best for Depression support – Doctor on Demand
- Accepts insurance
- Offers live video chat
- Physical health services are also provided
It also has
- Limited treatment choices
- No free trials
- Consultations are not free
Get started – with on Demand Doctor
Best for Couples – ReGain – Get Started with ReGain
Best for those with busy schedules – Bliss by the Centre for interactive health solutions
- available to anyone with internet access
- lessons are self-guided
- specifically targets depression
- doesn’t offer any appointment with trained professionals
- one may lose motivation to complete program
Get Started with Bliss – Sign up for free
Tips for finding free online therapists
It is not always simple to find free online therapists. If you have insurance, contacting your benefits department is an excellent place to start. You may also conduct a quick online search.
Here are a few resources to assist you locate free or low-cost Online therapy:
- Your health-care provider. Because of the growing epidemic, most health insurance companies have begun to reimburse the cost of various online therapy platforms. Check with your insurance company before committing to a costly program.
- Most employers provide free counseling sessions using their preferred platform. Whether you have one, don’t be scared to write an email to your benefits center or human resource official asking if they provide any services.
- Your college or university. If you’re a student or professor, your school probably includes a counseling facility or a social worker who can help you find options for help. If the institution has a psychology department, it may organize free clinics where students may put their knowledge to use and assist the public.
- Organizations for mental health. A number of national organizations, including the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), can assist you in locating free or low-cost online therapists or services. These are generally reliable resources with whom they’ve already worked and who they know can assist you with your predicament.
When To Meet a Therapist One on One
If you desire more closeness or are dealing with significant difficulties that need exposure treatment or lengthy talks (such as addiction, eating disorders, or severe depression), you should consider seeing a therapist in person.
That being said, everyone is different, and this will be a personal choice. If you have faster access to an online therapist, you might choose to start there and then move to in-person if it works better for you overall.
Signs That Online Therapy Might Just Be the Answer You Have Been Waiting For
Free Online Therapy, How true is it?
A number of online sites provide free or low-cost therapy. These free services may be provided by peer counselors or coaches, although working directly with certified mental health specialists may need money. Furthermore, certain insurance plans or EAPs may cover specific online services.
In addition, a variety of mental health organizations, such as SAMHSA and NAMI, can offer free peer therapy through their hotlines or link you with a free or low-cost online therapist.
Who needs Online Therapy?
Online counseling may assist anyone who is prepared to listen, focus, and devote to bettering their mental health without having to break the bank in the process. However, internet treatment is not appropriate for many illnesses.
According to a 2013 review Trusted Source, patients suffering from depression, PTSD, and drug abuse problems can benefit from internet counseling. Online therapy is also an excellent choice if you are unable to locate a therapist in your area who meets your requirements.
Someone with a more direct mental health illness, such as schizophrenia or psychosis, may require rapid, face-to-face attention. Online treatment may not be beneficial for persons suffering from schizophrenia since it may intensify the sense of being watched surreptitiously.
Furthermore, if you or someone you know is having suicide thoughts, in-person counselling may be a better option.
To be on the safe side always
Taking care of your mental health does not have to be time-consuming or costly.
There are a variety of online counseling platforms that may assist you in locating support groups or certified therapists who can educate you how to handle anxiety, depression, PTSD, and other mental health disorders for free or at a very little cost.