Online therapy services present a convenient and innovative approach to mental healthcare. The fact is, in-person therapy has its limits in terms of flexibility, availability, and pricing. Perhaps more significantly, in-person sessions became exceedingly more difficult to attain in the wake of lockdowns and social distancing requirements. These changes resulted in the increased utilization of online healthcare over recent years—and studies suggest that the rise is here to stay.
As the field of online therapy—also referred to as "e-therapy" or "internet therapy"—continues to expand, so does the number of providers available to choose from. When searching for the right virtual therapy service for your needs, it’s important to consider factors such as pricing, modes of communication, and therapists’ backgrounds.
To help guide your selection, we’ve reviewed the best online therapy services available today.
To find the best e-therapy options, we compared several key factors including:
BetterHelp is one of the largest providers of online therapy services, letting you get matched with a licensed professional therapist in less than 24 hours. You’ll be able to communicate with your therapist by phone, video call, live chat, or text messaging.
While the platform doesn’t take insurance, it does offer financial aid for patients with tighter budgets.
Why we chose BetterHelp: BetterHelp’s app and online platform are both user-friendly, giving you access to self-help worksheets on various topics, including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and conflict resolution.
Our experience: BetterHelp reviews are positive and the service is reasonably priced. We like the fact that BetterHelp counselors each go through a rigorous vetting process.
Cerebral offers online talk therapy sessions for people suffering from conditions such as anxiety, depression, and insomnia. Their team of professional counselors provide you with a holistic treatment plan tailored to your needs.
Cerebral’s two-tiered approach of talk therapy and proper medication prescriptions allows you to manage your symptoms and achieve a more balanced lifestyle.
Why we chose Cerebral: Cerebral is one of the more affordable options on our list, while still providing you with a high quality of care.
Our experience: We like the fact that Cerebral’s team checks in with you every month, monitors your medication reactions, and helps you make the necessary adjustments to ensure your treatment progresses as intended.
Online-Therapy.com has a network of counselors from various fields of expertise, with a primary focus on CBT. In addition, their platform hosts a range of interactive worksheets, activities, and self-help assignments to help guide you through its program.
Depending on your preference, you can communicate with your counselor via text, audio, or video chat.
Why we chose Online-Therapy.com: This online therapy provider allows you to switch therapists at any point during treatment. Their journaling tool is another helpful way to keep track of your efforts and improve your well-being.
Our experience: In contrast with some other online therapy services, Online-Therapy.com allows you to view recommended therapist profiles and choose your own counselor based on user reviews, specializations, and accreditations.
Thriveworks’ services include online, face-to-face, and over-the-phone therapy sessions. Their network of professionals are experienced across a wide variety of specialties, including individual talk therapy, psychiatry, couples/family therapy, child therapy, and more.
Why we chose Thriveworks: Thriveworks is in-network with most insurance plans, so you only have to cover a copay for therapy sessions. Even if you’re not covered by insurance, Thriveworks is still a very affordable option.
Our experience: Thriveworks stands out from other online therapy services by offering same- or next-day appointments, keeping wait times to a minimum. You can also contact your therapist between sessions if needed.
ReGain offers convenient online relationship therapy for couples and individuals. Their service matches you with a licensed therapist specifically chosen to address your needs and goals. Its monthly subscription grants one live video or phone session per week, along with 24/7 access to an online therapist.
Why we chose ReGain: ReGain understands everyone’s situation is different and offers reduced fees to those with financial difficulties or disabilities.
Our experience: With ReGain, you can pick and choose your therapy appointments entirely around your schedule. This makes it a particularly convenient option if you are restricted in time.
Pride Counseling boasts budget-friendly online therapy for members of the LGBTQ+ community.
Pride Counseling charges weekly rather than per session, allowing for multiple meetings within the same week. It also has a mobile app that offers access to all of the website’s features, with the added benefit of receiving mobile mental health support.
Pride Counseling does not include family therapy, support groups, which could be beneficial to LGBTQ+ individuals. They also do not work in-network with insurance providers, although its low weekly counseling rates make it more affordable than traditional in-person therapy.
Why we chose Pride Counseling: Perhaps Pride Counseling’s greatest benefit is that it offers a safe, supportive environment for LGBTQ+ community members to address their mental health issues, with all therapists trained specifically for this community’s needs.
Our experience: Pride Counseling places a strong emphasis on discretion, by giving you the option to sign up with a nickname, while other services typically require your full legal name.
Talkspace is an e-therapy platform that offers counseling and psychiatric treatment for teens, adults, and couples. They employ a detailed matching process to connect you with a licensed and experienced therapist based on your circumstances.
They accept insurance and offer three weekly payment plans. The two higher-tier plans include live sessions, but only the highest tier plan includes therapy via messaging with guaranteed daily text responses to any questions you may have.
Why we chose Talkspace: Talkspace specializes in over 40 areas of clinical therapy, so you can feel confident that your needs will be met.
Our experience: We were impressed by the expedient response times that Talkspace therapists and counselors demonstrate. Whenever you need the help, their care providers are available to lend support.
Calmerry is an e-therapy network with therapists trained in a wide range of specialties, including grief counseling, couples counseling, and LGBTQ-related therapy. They give you two ways to communicate with counselors–texting and video sessions.
All plans include unlimited texting 24/7, daily responses from therapists, and the option to switch counselors or cancel at any time.
Why we chose Calmerry: Calmerry performs thorough background checks on its therapists to ensure the quality and reliability of the counseling services you receive.
Our experience: Calmerry doesn’t simply match you with a therapist; their blog provides information about therapy methods (including CBT, emotion-focused therapy, and dialectical behavior therapy) so you can understand which approach truly fits your needs.
Amwell offers flexible online therapy with a network of over 350 professional counselors specializing in a variety of therapy methods. Their platform is accessible through their website or mobile app, and doesn’t require you to subscribe—instead, they conveniently allow you to pay per-appointment.
You can search for available therapists by using the filters on the platform, and easily schedule an appointment once you’ve found the right fit. While this means you won’t be able to contact therapists between sessions, the upside is you spend less time waiting for the help you need.
Why we chose Amwell: Amwell is a one-stop-shop for all of your healthcare needs, including but not limited to therapy services. Its professionals can even write you a prescription if necessary. Additionally, Amwell is connected to 125 insurance providers, which can help lower your out-of-pocket costs.
Our experience: Unlike most online therapy providers, you don’t have to wait to be matched to a therapist when using Amwell. Their filter-and-find process puts more agency in your hands, giving you the relevant information you need to choose the right counselor.
Faithful Counseling is an online therapy platform that specializes in delivering clinical therapy that includes Christian teachings from the Bible. Its therapists are all licensed and certified within their field and submit declarations as to their beliefs to ensure they conform to the Faithful Counseling statement of faith.
The provider employs a sophisticated matching process to connect you with a therapist that specializes in both your mental health difficulties and your branch of Christianity. This means it’s a suitable platform if your faith is important to you and wish to include biblical teachings in your therapy. Its easy sign-up process, clear and appealing display, 24/7 messaging service, and simple functionality in terms of booking appointments make it easy for Christians who want faith-based counseling to try Faithful Counseling.
Why we chose Faithful Counseling: In-app journal
Service quality, therapist accreditations, cost of care, and modes of communication are essential features to look at when comparing the best online mental health services. We've compiled the chart below so you can easily see how our top 10 online therapy platforms differ in terms of overall user reviews, affordability, and how you'll communicate with your counselor.
For instance, if you prefer to communicate with your licensed therapist via phone calls, you should check whether this medium is available with a given online counseling service.
|Compare Top Online Therapy Websites|