Recovery Center Blog

How to Choose the Best Online Therapy Services

Written By Recovery Centers - December 2nd, 2022
How to Choose the Best Online Therapy Services

One in six Americans started therapy for the first time in 2020. Therapy is becoming more commonplace and accepted than ever, and that’s great news for anyone who’s been considering mental health treatment.

Unfortunately, it also means that many therapists are booked months out and difficult to access. With the rise of online therapy services, however, this doesn’t have to be a problem.

If you’ve been considering seeing a therapist, we want to help you find one. Read on to learn how to find the best online therapy services for you.

Consider Different Types of Therapy

There are multiple different types of therapy available. While not all of them work well in an online format, you do still have options when you’re trying to choose online therapy services.

Most people opt for cognitive behavioral therapy as their first choice because it’s effective for a wide range of conditions. CBT works well for patients struggling with drug addiction, eating disorders, alcoholism, and a wide range of other mental health conditions.

Other popular forms of therapy include eye movement desensitization and reprocessing, dialectical behavioral therapy, and more.

Evaluate different types of therapy and find one that you think may benefit you. If you’ve had success with therapy in the past, see if you can find an online therapist that offers the same methods.

Choose a Communication Method That Works for You

When you think of online therapy services, what do you picture your sessions looking like? Different online therapists and online therapy platforms have different communication methods available. Pick what feels right for you.

Often, you can choose between text-based therapy, phone calls, and video calls. Some therapists may mix and match these methods while others will have a preference.

When you’re reaching out to therapists, communicate your preferences and see if they’re able to work with them.

Consider Local Providers if Possible

Even if you’re looking for the best online therapy service, it may benefit you to look at local therapy options. Due to COVID-19, many therapists started using telehealth to treat their patients. As a result, you may be able to find an online therapist in your area.

Finding a local therapist who happens to treat patients online comes with several benefits. They’re more likely to be in your insurance network and they may be associated with a local psychiatrist or other local mental health resources.

They’ll be able to help you find other forms of care in your area, and if you ever decide to try in-person therapy, they may be able to do that for you.

That said, local therapists may be in short supply. If that’s the case, using a nationwide online therapy service is still a good option.

Find Options That Suit Your Budget

It’s no secret that mental health services can be expensive. It’s okay to “shop around” until you find something within your budget.

If you’re lucky, your insurance plan may cover online mental health services. This isn’t always the case, however. If you don’t have health insurance or if your insurance plan doesn’t work with popular online mental health services, you may need to pay out of pocket.

Most of the popular online therapy services charge a weekly fee that is often lower than traditional therapy fees, but you will need to check with each provider to learn their costs.

Don’t feel shy about asking about the cost of mental health services. Mental health professionals understand that you need to find an option that’s compatible with your budget.

Find a Therapist That Specializes in What You Need

Why is it that you’re seeking therapy? Therapists often specialize, and it’s best to find one that specializes in the condition that you’re struggling with.

Some therapists focus heavily on addiction. Their clients are either struggling with addiction themselves or they’re the loved ones of people who are struggling with addiction.

Some therapists focus on personality disorders, psychotic disorders, or general “hard to treat” conditions.

Some therapists are generalists. They’re happy to welcome patients regardless of their struggles.

It’s okay to ask a therapist if they have experience with cases like yours, though many therapists will have this information available on their websites.

Ask About Availability

If you have a specific therapist in mind, inquire about their availability. If you’re using one of the popular online therapy services, you will likely be matched with an available therapist by default.

Many therapists have full schedules, so find one that has time for you on a weekly basis (or however often you choose to see them).

Consider Your Personal Preferences

This is similar to choosing a therapist that specializes in your specific condition. It’s okay to choose a therapist that suits your preferences and lifestyle.

Many people want to find therapists who understand them best. It’s not uncommon for people to want to find a therapist who’s the same gender, sexuality, religion, or even race. If something is an important part of your life or identity, it makes sense that you’d want your therapist to be understanding.

Don’t Feel Pressured to Commit

Choosing a therapist is hard. Trying to choose one online can be even harder. Don’t feel like you have to commit to a therapist after a single session.

If you have a virtual session with a therapist and it doesn’t feel like a good match, it’s okay to let them know and begin your search again.

Find the Best Online Therapy Services for Your Situation

Finding the best online therapy services is tough. It’s fantastic that there are so many options, but all of those options make it more difficult to make a decision. Take your time, keep these tips in mind, and make sure that you find a good match.

The right therapy will be life-changing.

Are you looking for in-person mental health services? Check out our national directory so you can find the care you need.