Therapy has become more accessible than ever, and the stigma toward seeking mental health assistance has also reduced over the years. Through online counseling, individuals can now access mental health assistance without leaving their homes.
Teletherapy services became especially useful during the pandemic when lockdowns limited physical access to therapists. It led to a surge in therapy platforms available online, and it’s now harder to identify the most reliable services. We aim to make that decision easier. Here are five affordable and reliable services for anyone searching for online therapy options out there.
Calmerry was established in 2019 in response to the recent pandemic. It has quickly built a reputation as one of the reliable online therapy choices around. The platform is accessible through a computer or their official mobile application, and both are optimized to allow for easy navigation.
Calmerry offers access to a wide selection of specialists. All of them are licensed with a minimum of 2500 hours’ worth of clinical experience. The platform also offers access to other licensed professionals such as psychologists, social workers, and marriage counselors who help couples resolve relationship issues.
With Calmerry, you can choose your preferred therapist based on factors such as gender, religion, and even experience. The therapists are granted the freedom to use different techniques to treatment, including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).
The platform specializes in issues such as:
The service offers two forms of communication; video call sessions and text messages. Each client gets to enjoy 24/7 access to their therapist through text messaging. Getting therapy starts with a questionnaire that you fill out with general and some information about what you’re experiencing. Your questionnaire answers are later used to rate your emotional well-being.
This Calmerry review confirms that the service is subscription-based, and its plans are split into tiers. The higher tiers offer more features, so clients get to choose according to what they’re willing to pay for. The rates are constant, and unlike other platforms, prices don’t change according to location. The only major downside with Calmerry is that it does not take insurance.
Doctor on demand is a teletherapy service initially founded in 2012. It offers access to different specialists, including doctors, psychotherapists, psychiatrists, and clinical psychologists. The platform provides various forms of care. Among them is behavioral care, which involves conditions such as:
The specialists are allowed to provide prescriptions except for controlled substances. To access the service, one needs the Doctor on Demand app, which is available for free in mobile app stores. The app has a simple interface that makes it easy to use. Through it, you can access a licensed therapist 24/7 after following several steps.
Alternatively, you can skip some specifics and see the first professional available, which takes up to 5 minutes. It helps in emergency cases, for example, someone who needs urgent assistance to deal with depression or other mental health conditions.
As a client, you can only communicate with your specialist through video chat, and you don’t require a subscription. Just sign up, and the service will be available anytime. For therapy pricing, you can opt for a 25-minute session for $129 or a 50 minute one for $179. The platform accepts insurance from most providers, but it will depend on your type of coverage.
Cerebral is an excellent choice for people seeking long-term help. It is a telemedicine service that assists with specific issues, including anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder (some states), insomnia, and PTSD (some states).
With Cerebral, you start by signing up and completing an evaluation that aims to identify what you’re dealing with. After the signup process, you can choose a therapist and start booking appointments. There is a healthy number of specialists on the platform ready for selection, and you can check their bios to make your decision. Cerebral also allows you to switch therapists in case you feel the need to.
You can also communicate with the therapist through a phone call or videoconferencing. Clients can also message their assigned specialists, but only through the platform’s text chat.
Pricing is subscription-based, and there are three plans:
The therapy plans include a weekly phone session/video session with a therapist, and you can reach them at any time via text through the platform. The service also provides progress tracking, which is done by the therapist. Cerebral accepts some insurance plans; thus, clients can reduce their costs significantly.
It is a multipurpose telehealth website that provides therapy sessions and assistance with other medical issues. If you want to schedule a normal medical visit, you can get in touch with a doctor within an hour of signing up. However, you can wait up to a week to find a professional for psychiatry and psychotherapy. Thus, MDLIVE is not the place to go for an urgent psychiatric crisis.
The platform offers assistance for specific conditions, including:
Communicating with the therapist can be either through a phone call or videoconferencing. The platform doesn’t allow the use of text messages. Depending on what seems easier for you, you can opt to use the site or install the MDLIVE app.
MDLIVE is straightforward when it comes to pricing. It doesn’t offer subscriptions, so you’ll pay for every session you attend either through your funds or insurance. You will need about $108 for every session to see a psychotherapist. Seeing psychiatrists requires an initial $259, which drops to $108 after consultation. The platform is clear on its rules regarding refunds or cancellations.
It is a telemedicine platform that offers both teletherapy and medical visits. It’s suitable for individuals with a good internet connection who prefer to access therapy from home or work. On its site, Amwell has listed the different conditions its professionals treat, including:
It is not recommended for individuals suffering from mental health crises like thoughts of self-harm or those who pose a threat to themselves and others.
Amwell provides you with different therapy options depending on your preference. You can opt for a therapist with a doctorate or a Master’s degree. You can even choose to see a psychiatrist who is authorized to provide prescriptions.
Amwell primarily allows communication through video chat, but phone calls are used in case of technical difficulties. Amwell is quite affordable compared to most teletherapy sites in terms of pricing.
What you pay varies with the level of experience the specialist has. For example, a session with a therapist with a Master’s qualification will cost you $109. For a doctoral-level specialist, you’ll pay $129 per session. Amwell also takes insurance, which makes it more affordable.
The above platforms are all worthy options when you’re searching for affordable but reliable sources of online therapy. Eventually, the choice boils down to preference. You can even try the different services before committing until you find the right fit.
Online therapy can provide you the support you need during tough times, and the best thing is that it’s accessible from the comfort of your home or workplace. But it’s only recommended for non-urgent issues. If you need urgent assistance during a crisis, it’s better to seek out ordinary therapy.