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Top Online Therapy Platforms for Managing Anxiety in 2023
Online therapy is a convenient and private way to access treatment for anxiety. Anxiety is a common mental health condition that can interfere with your daily life. According to Harvard Health Publishing, daily anxiety involves minor levels of fear or doubt about performing a task. This type of anxiety may cause symptoms such as muscle tightness or sweating, but it should not interfere with your ability to function. On the other hand, severe anxiety can be debilitating and may require professional help.
Thankfully, online therapy companies provide a platform that allows you to connect with licensed mental health professionals from the comfort of your own home. Here are our top 8 picks for the best online therapy for anxiety in 2023.
- Best Overall: BetterHelp – BetterHelp is a popular online therapy platform that offers individual counseling for anxiety, as well as group counseling and self-help resources. With BetterHelp, you can access therapy via video, phone, chat, or messaging. Their licensed therapists specialize in treating anxiety and can help you manage your symptoms.
- Best for Medication Management: Brightside – If you are looking for an online therapy platform that also offers medication management, Brightside is an excellent option. They offer a comprehensive approach to treating anxiety, which includes both therapy and medication management. With Brightside, you will have access to a licensed psychiatrist who can prescribe medication to help manage your symptoms.
- Best for Insurance Coverage: Talkspace – Talkspace is an online therapy platform that accepts insurance, making it an affordable option for those who need therapy for anxiety. They offer both individual and couples counseling, and you can choose to have therapy sessions via text, video, or voice call.
- Best for Couples with Anxiety: ReGain – If you and your partner are struggling with anxiety, ReGain is a great option for online couples counseling. They offer therapy sessions via video, phone, or messaging, and their licensed therapists specialize in treating anxiety in couples.
- Best for Teenagers with Anxiety: Teen Counseling – Teen Counseling is an online therapy platform that specializes in providing therapy for teenagers with anxiety. They offer individual counseling sessions via video, phone, or messaging, and their licensed therapists have experience working with teens.
- Best Self-Paced Option: Online-Therapy.com – Online-Therapy.com is a self-paced online therapy platform that offers a range of resources to help you manage your anxiety. Their program includes cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and other evidence-based techniques to help you overcome your anxiety. You can access therapy sessions via video, phone, or messaging.
- Best for LGBTQ+ Individuals with Anxiety: Pride Counseling – Pride Counseling is an online therapy platform that specializes in providing therapy for members of the LGBTQ+ community with anxiety. They offer individual counseling sessions via video, phone, or messaging, and their licensed therapists have experience working with LGBTQ+ individuals.
- Best for Same-Day Sessions: Sesame – Sesame is an online therapy platform that offers same-day therapy sessions for anxiety. They offer individual counseling sessions via video, phone, or messaging, and their licensed therapists can help you manage your symptoms in real-time.
Best Online Therapy Platforms for Anxiety: A Comprehensive Comparison
Online Therapy Platform 1: BetterHelp
BetterHelp offers messaging and live chat, phone, and video sessions to its users. The cost of therapy ranges from $60 to $90 per week, based on your location, preferences, and availability of therapists, with plans billed monthly. While BetterHelp does not prescribe medication, they do not accept insurance either.
Online Therapy Platform 2: Brightside
Brightside provides live video and messaging therapy to its users. Their pricing structure includes $299 per month for unlimited messaging and four live video sessions. Additional video sessions can be added for $59 each. The medication plan costs $95 per month, plus pharmacy copay. The medication plus therapy plan costs $349 per month. Brightside prescribes medication and accepts insurance.
Online Therapy Platform 3: Talkspace
Talkspace offers text, video, and audio messages, live video, and workshops to its users. The cost of therapy ranges from $69 to $109 per week, depending on the subscription, with plans billed monthly. Psychiatry services cost $249 for the initial consult and $125 for subsequent sessions. Talkspace prescribes medication for Talkspace Psychiatry only, and they accept insurance.
Online Therapy Platform 4: ReGain
ReGain provides messaging and live chat, phone, and video sessions to its users. The cost of therapy ranges from $60 to $90 per week, based on your location, preferences, and availability of therapists, with plans billed monthly. ReGain does not prescribe medication and does not accept insurance.
Online Therapy Platform 5: Teen Counseling
Teen Counseling offers messaging and live chat, phone, and video sessions to its users. The cost of therapy ranges from $60 to $90 per week, based on your location, preferences, and availability of therapists, with plans billed monthly. Teen Counseling does not prescribe medication and does not accept insurance.
Online Therapy Platform 6: Online-Therapy.com
Online-Therapy.com provides messaging and live video and voice-only sessions to its users. The cost of therapy ranges from $39.95 to $79.95 per week, depending on the subscription, with a 20 percent discount for the first month. Online-Therapy.com does not prescribe medication and does not accept insurance.
Online Therapy Platform 7: Pride Counseling
Pride Counseling offers messaging and live chat, phone, and video sessions to its users. The cost of therapy ranges from $60 to $90 per week, based on your location, preferences, and availability of therapists, with plans billed monthly. Pride Counseling does not prescribe medication and does not accept insurance.
Online Therapy Platform 8: Sesame
Sesame provides live video sessions to its users. The cost of therapy ranges from $60 to $300 and up per session, depending on the therapist, the type of session, and your location. While Sesame offers medication services through doctors or authorized providers, they do not accept insurance.
Top Online Therapy for Anxiety: BetterHelp
BetterHelp is an online therapy platform that offers a large network of more than 24,000 mental health professionals, including psychologists, therapists, and clinical social workers. This platform is considered one of the best for anxiety treatment due to its large pool of licensed therapists and resources dedicated to anxiety-related topics.
- More than 24,000 mental health professionals available
- Between-session “homework” to improve the therapy experience
- Financial assistance available
- Insurance not accepted
- Only serves adults
BetterHelp offers messaging and live counseling sessions by chat, video, or phone. This gives users a variety of ways to receive treatment that best suits their needs and comfort level. Users can also access a library of articles and worksheets dedicated to anxiety-related topics, including medication, lifestyle modifications, and everyday tips for managing symptoms.
Cost and Payment Options
BetterHelp’s weekly subscription prices range from $60 to $90 per week, depending on location, preferences, and financial aid eligibility. Plans are billed monthly and include unlimited messaging and one live chat, phone, or video session per week. BetterHelp is a subscription-based service, so it may not be a good fit if you’re looking for a pay-as-you-go platform.
BetterHelp does not prescribe medication, but users can discuss medication options with their licensed therapist.
BetterHelp does not accept insurance, but the platform offers ongoing financial assistance for individuals who qualify, such as veterans and people experiencing financial hardships. Users can complete a financial aid application after signing up to see if they qualify.
Overall, BetterHelp is a great choice for individuals looking for a variety of treatment options for anxiety and access to a large network of licensed therapists. Plus, with the platform’s financial assistance program, it’s also a great option for individuals who may need financial support to receive therapy.
Best Online Therapy for Anxiety With Medication Management: Brightside
Brightside is an online therapy platform that offers specialized programs to help individuals manage anxiety and depression. Their programs consist of self-care tools, private weekly therapy sessions, and medication management when deemed necessary. Here’s a closer look at Brightside’s features, benefits, and pricing.
- Offers therapy plus medication plan, therapy-only plan, or medication-only plan
- Offers a free assessment to help determine whether the platform is right for you before signing up
- Accepts insurance
- Offers 45-minute therapy sessions
- Has an app for iOS devices
- Limited availability of some therapists
- Only available to individuals aged 18 and older
- No app available for Android devices
- Offers messaging and live video sessions only
Brightside provides personalized treatment plans for individuals suffering from anxiety and depression. Treatment plans may consist of self-care tools, private weekly therapy sessions, and medication management when deemed necessary. Brightside psychiatrists are able to prescribe medication and provide ongoing monitoring of the patient’s care.
Users fill out a questionnaire during the sign-up process to help match them with the best provider for their needs. Providers include physicians, psychiatrists, therapists, and psychiatric nurse practitioners. Brightside states that their therapists typically respond to messages within 24 to 48 hours on weekdays.
Brightside’s medication management option is a major benefit for individuals who require prescription medication to manage their anxiety. According to our reviews team, more than 29 percent of online therapy users surveyed reported that the ability to receive medication was the most important factor when choosing a platform. Brightside also offers a free assessment to help individuals determine if the platform is right for them before signing up.
Brightside offers three plan options, including a medication-only plan, a therapy-only plan, and a medication plus therapy plan. The cost and payment options for each plan are as follows:
- Medication plan: $95 per month plus pharmacy copay, or $15 per medication for delivery to your home
- Therapy plan: $299 per month for unlimited messaging and four monthly video sessions with a licensed therapist; additional video appointments cost $59 per session
- Medication plus Therapy plan: $349 per month, including everything in the medication plan and the therapy plan, plus your pharmacy copay or $15 per medication
Brightside accepts insurance, and if you have insurance benefits for prescriptions, you may pay less, depending on your plan.
Brightside offers personalized treatment plans that include medication management for anxiety and depression. Their platform offers a variety of benefits, including the ability to choose between therapy plus medication plan, therapy-only plan, or medication-only plan, and a free assessment to determine whether the platform is right for you. Brightside’s pricing varies based on the plan you choose, and they accept insurance.
Top Online Therapy Platform for Anxiety with Insurance Coverage: Talkspace
- Accepts multiple insurance plans
- Prescription medication available through Talkspace Psychiatry
- Offers individual, couple, and teen counseling sessions
- Additional fee for live video sessions
- Costly if seeking a limited number of sessions
Session Types Text, video, and voice messaging; live video, audio, and chat sessions; live workshops
Cost and Payment Options – Talkspace prices vary depending on the location, but generally start at $69 per week for Messaging Therapy, $99 per week for Video Therapy Plus Messaging, and $109 per week for a combination of Live Therapy Plus Messaging Plus Weekly Workshops, with monthly billing plans. Talkspace Psychiatry costs $249 for the first session and $125 for follow-up sessions.
Prescription Medication – Talkspace Psychiatry provides online psychiatric services and medication management for adults, making it stand out from competitors that do not prescribe medication.
Insurance Coverage Yes
If you’re looking for a comprehensive online counseling platform that offers mental health and psychiatric services to individuals, couples, and teens aged 13 to 17 living with anxiety, Talkspace might be worth considering. Our review found that Talkspace has licensed therapists and anxiety counselors who have expertise in areas like anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), phobias, mood disorders, and more. With a minimum requirement of a master’s degree and a minimum of 3,000 hours of clinical experience, you’ll have access to highly qualified mental health experts.
Talkspace Psychiatry sets the platform apart from competitors that do not prescribe medication. This feature provides online psychiatric services and medication management for adults. While the cost of combining medication management with counseling can add up, this approach can be beneficial for people with anxiety, as anxiety symptoms often respond well to a combination of psychotherapy and medication.
Talkspace accepts insurance, which is one of the few online therapy platforms that do. This may help you manage your costs. According to our reviews team’s April 2022 survey of 1,000 online therapy users, nearly 39 percent reported choosing a platform primarily because it accepted their insurance.
Talkspace offers a couple of options for meeting with a therapist for anxiety and depression, including “messaging-only” and “messaging + live session” subscription plans. It’s important to note that a messaging-only plan means no live video or phone sessions with a therapist. Patients only have access to their therapist via messaging in the virtual therapy room. While you can upgrade to other plans that include video and audio messaging, it does increase the cost.
Although Talkspace’s homepage mentions that it has more than 60,000 five-star reviews, the platform has a customer review rating of just 1.09 out of 5 stars from the Better Business Bureau and 1.3 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot. Common complaints include problems with billing and poor customer service.
Pricing and Plans
Talkspace offers various subscription plans that cater to different needs. However, the pricing is not upfront and transparent, and you need to fill out an intake questionnaire to get exact pricing. Here’s some general pricing information to help you get a better idea of how much their programs cost:
- Messaging Therapy – Text, video, and audio messaging; starts at $69 per week or $276 per month
- Live Therapy – Four 30-minute live therapy sessions per month plus messaging therapy; starts at $99 per week or $396 per month
- Live Messaging Plus Therapy – Text, video, and audio messaging; four live 30-minute sessions per month; starts at $109 per week or $436 per month
- Teens Therapy (Ages 13 to 17) – Text, audio, and video messaging only (no live sessions); $260 per month
- Psychiatrist Sessions – $249 for the first consultation and $125 for any follow-up visits.
In conclusion, Talkspace is a reputable online counseling platform that offers anxiety counseling and psychiatric services. The platform has licensed therapists and anxiety counselors with expertise in various areas, and it’s one of the few online therapy platforms that accept insurance. The pricing and plans vary, and it can be costly if you need both medication management through the psychiatry plan and counseling through the therapy plan. While Talkspace’s customer reviews are mixed, the platform may be worth considering if you’re looking for an online counseling platform for anxiety that accepts insurance.
Best Online Therapy for Couples With Anxiety: ReGain
If you’re looking for a comprehensive online counseling platform that offers mental health and relationship services to couples living with anxiety, ReGain may be worth considering. Here’s what our review found:
- Providers who specialize in anxiety-related relationship issues
- Offers financial aid to eligible individuals
- System does not support three-way live sessions
- Insurance not accepted
- Cost for one person is the same as the cost for two people
Session Types: Messaging and live chat, phone, and video sessions
Cost and Payment Options: ReGain offers a weekly subscription plan that ranges from $60 to $90, depending on your location, preferences, and therapist. Plans are billed monthly.
Prescribes Medication: No
Accepts Insurance: No
ReGain’s online counseling platform is designed to help couples with various mental health and relationship issues, including anxiety. The platform is owned by BetterHelp and focuses on relationship therapy.
ReGain therapists are highly qualified mental health experts with a master’s or doctoral degree in their field and at least three years and 1,000 hours of clinical experience. They specialize in relationship therapy and have a specific interest and expertise in anxiety-related issues.
The platform offers unlimited messaging so that you can communicate with your therapist between live sessions, which are held weekly. Both you and your partner share an account and can view all of the information provided by the counselor and your partner.
ReGain Plan Options and Prices:
- ReGain weekly subscription averages $60 to $90 per week, depending on your location, preferences, and financial aid eligibility.
- Plans are billed monthly and include unlimited messaging as well as weekly live sessions via chat, phone, or video.
While ReGain does not support three-way live sessions and does not accept insurance, the platform is a great option for couples seeking specialized anxiety-related relationship therapy from highly qualified mental health experts.
Best Online Therapy for Adolescents with Anxiety: Teen Counseling
Adolescents experiencing anxiety often lack access to mental health resources. This problem is especially concerning as anxiety is the most common mental health issue among children and adolescents. Fortunately, online counseling platforms such as Teen Counseling provide teens with a safe and secure space to meet with licensed therapists and receive the necessary treatment. In this article, we will examine Teen Counseling, its pros, and cons, and discuss its cost and payment options, session types, and plan options and prices.
- Therapists specialize in counseling for teens ages 13 to 19
- Parents can be invited by the teen to view the counseling room
- Financial assistance available
- Insurance not accepted
- Unable to fulfill court orders, make any official diagnosis, or prescribe medication
Session Types: Teen Counseling offers messaging and live chat, phone, and video sessions.
Cost and Payment Options: Teen Counseling offers weekly subscriptions that range from $60 to $90, depending on geographic location, preferences, and therapists. Plans are billed monthly.
Prescribes Medication: No.
Accepts Insurance: No.
All therapists on Teen Counseling have a master’s degree or doctorate in their field and have additional teen-specific training or experience.
Online Counseling “Room”:
Teens meet with their therapist in an online counseling “room” that only they and their therapist have access to. Parents typically complete the onboarding process, but most teens meet with a counselor alone.
Messaging and Live Counseling Sessions:
Anxiety counselors offer live counseling sessions via chat, audio, or video. Teens can send an unlimited number of messages to their therapist. However, Teen Counseling is not transparent about how often the therapist is required to respond.
The information discussed during an appointment is private, unless the patient discloses that they’re being neglected or abused or that they’re thinking about harming themselves or someone else.
Teen Counseling Plan Options and Prices:
Teen Counseling offers a weekly subscription that ranges from $60 to $90 per week, depending on geographic location, preferences, and financial aid eligibility. Plans are billed monthly and include unlimited messaging and one live session per week via chat, video, or audio.
Teen Counseling offers adolescents experiencing anxiety an online space to receive counseling from licensed therapists. With its specific focus on adolescent therapy and additional teen-specific training or experience, Teen Counseling provides a valuable resource for teens in need. While it does have some limitations, such as being unable to prescribe medication, Teen Counseling is an affordable and accessible option for those seeking help.
Best Self-Paced Online Therapy for Anxiety: Online-Therapy.com
If you’re struggling with anxiety and prefer a more self-directed approach to managing your mental health, Online-Therapy.com might be worth exploring. The platform offers a range of self-paced tools and resources to help individuals challenge and overcome anxiety-related problems, in addition to hosting live therapy sessions.
- Online-Therapy.com provides a range of self-paced tools and resources to help manage anxiety symptoms between sessions.
- New subscribers can get a discount of 20% off their first month.
- Individual sessions only.
- Basic plan does not include live sessions.
- Services are not available for children or teenagers.
Session Types: Online-Therapy.com offers messaging and live chat, phone, and video sessions with some plans.
Cost and Payment Options: Depending on the subscription, prices range from $39.95 to $79.95 weekly, with a 20% discount for new subscribers in their first month. Subscriptions are billed monthly.
Prescribes Medication: No.
Accepts Insurance: No.
Online-Therapy.com includes self-paced worksheets, journaling, activity plans, tests, and yoga and meditation videos to help patients improve the outcome of their therapy and learn to better manage anxiety symptoms on their own. With the basic plan, your anxiety counselor will provide ongoing feedback on the worksheets, based on the information you share. For those who need more in-depth treatment, the standard or premium plan includes live sessions with a therapist and unlimited messaging.
Plan Options and Prices
Online-Therapy.com offers three subscription plans: basic, standard, and premium. The basic plan costs $39.95 per week and comes with self-paced worksheets, yoga and meditation videos, a journal, an activity plan, and tests, with daily feedback from the therapist. However, the plan does not include live therapy sessions.
The standard plan includes the same features as the basic plan, with the addition of one live session per week and unlimited messaging. This plan is $59.95 per week.
The premium plan includes the same features as the basic and standard plans, with the addition of two live sessions with a therapist per week and unlimited messaging. This plan is $79.95 per week.
Top Online Therapy for LGBTQ+ Individuals with Anxiety: Pride Counseling
- Therapists specializing in anxiety-related issues of LGBTQ+ individuals
- Option to use a nickname for confidentiality
- Financial aid program available for affordability
- Not available for individuals under 18 years old
- Insurance not accepted
- Therapists cannot prescribe medication or diagnose conditions
Session Types: Messaging and live chat, phone, and video sessions
Cost and Payment Options: $60 to $90 weekly, based on location, preferences, and therapist; plans billed monthly
Prescribes Medication: No
Accepts Insurance: No
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), LGBTQ+ individuals are at a higher risk of mental health conditions than heterosexual individuals. In our review of 1,000 online therapy users, 18.5 percent reported that the availability of an LGBTQ+-affirming therapist was the most important factor when choosing an online therapy platform.
Pride Counseling offers online therapy for anxiety, addiction, eating disorders, trauma, grief, and more. The counselors and therapists specialize in issues that are common among the LGBTQ+ community. All therapists on the platform have a master’s degree in their field, with many having extensive experience supporting LGBTQ+ individuals. This means they have more hands-on experience and time spent working with clients in the LGBTQ+ community, compared to some therapists on other platforms, which are also owned by BetterHelp, the parent company of Pride Counseling.
Patients get a private virtual room where they can message their therapist anytime, but the therapist may respond only once a day from Monday through Friday. Live sessions can also be scheduled and conducted via live chat, video, or audio. Pride Counseling offers ongoing financial assistance to eligible individuals. However, as a subscription-based service, it may not be the best option if you are looking for a pay-as-you-go platform.
Pride Counseling Plan Options and Prices
Weekly subscription prices range from $60 to $90, depending on location, preferences, and financial aid eligibility. Plans are billed monthly and include unlimited messaging via text, audio, and video, as well as one live chat, video, or audio session per week.
Best Online Therapy for Anxiety with Same-Day Sessions: Sesame Care
Anxiety can be debilitating, and finding the right therapy can be a challenge. Sesame Care, a direct-to-patient care marketplace, provides on-demand access to mental health and medical services via a pay-as-you-go model, making it a great option for those who prefer to make appointments as needed. Here are some pros and cons to consider.
- May be helpful for people who prefer to make appointments as needed
- Can pay for therapy à la carte instead of paying for a monthly membership
- For individuals, couples, or families
- Only offers video appointments
- May be limited provider availability in certain geographic areas
- Can get costly if you need long-term or frequent sessions
Session Types: Sesame Care offers only live video sessions.
Cost and Payment Options: The cost of therapy on Sesame Care ranges from $60 to $300 per session, depending on the type of session, therapist, and geographic location. There are no monthly membership fees or long-term contracts, so you can pay for therapy à la carte. Unfortunately, Sesame Care does not accept insurance.
Prescribes Medication: Yes, if seen by a medical doctor or other authorized provider.
Finding a therapist can be a daunting task, but Sesame Care makes it easy to find an expert and make an appointment. Once you enter your location, you’ll see a list of available providers, along with the price you can expect to pay depending on the type of session. The site provides therapist credentials, specialties, training, and experience, which makes it easy to search for a counselor who specializes in treating anxiety, panic disorders, or phobias.
Sesame Care has a variety of therapy offerings, including video therapy, video mental health consultations, video psychiatry, prescription refills, and video couples therapy. The platform allows you to cancel up to three hours before a scheduled visit. This is a great feature since 38 percent of online therapy users surveyed reported that the ability to cancel, reschedule, or postpone appointments was the most important factor when choosing an online therapist for anxiety and depression.
Sesame Plan Options and Prices
Sesame Care’s pricing varies depending on where you live. Once you input your location on the website, you can see rates in your area. Here’s a sample of pricing for someone living in Washington state:
- Video Therapy Session: $61
- Video Mental Health Consult: $29
- Video Psychiatry Consultation (New Patient): $110
- Psychiatry Consultation Session (New Patient): $385
- Video Couples Therapy Session: $193
- Video Prescription Refill: $24
In summary, Sesame Care is a great option for those who need same-day therapy sessions for anxiety, as well as other mental health or medical concerns. Its pay-as-you-go model and flexible cancellation policy make it an attractive choice for those who may not want to commit to a monthly membership.
Pros and Cons of Online Anxiety Therapy: What You Need to Know
Online therapy has become a popular option for those seeking mental health treatment. With its convenience and accessibility, more people are turning to online therapy for anxiety. However, there are both pros and cons to consider before deciding if this is the right option for you.
- Access to more providers: Online therapy can provide access to a wider range of licensed providers beyond your local community.
- Increased comfort and privacy: Many people feel more comfortable talking about personal issues online, without the risk of being seen at a therapy office or recognized by someone they know.
- More openness: Some people may feel more open to sharing information online, leading to more productive therapy sessions.
- Comfortable environment: Being in a familiar environment can help to decrease anxiety and support the therapy process.
- Time and transportation: Online therapy eliminates the need for travel time and transportation, making it easier for patients to attend sessions.
- Flexible scheduling: Online therapy platforms often offer more flexibility with scheduling than traditional in-person counseling.
- Accessibility: Online therapy is more accessible for those with physical limitations or who may be unable to leave their house.
- Messaging: Many online therapy platforms offer messaging capabilities, allowing patients to communicate with their therapist between sessions.
- No insurance acceptance: Not all online therapy platforms accept health insurance, making it an expensive option for those who have to pay out of pocket.
- Security concerns: Some people may have concerns about the security of their personal health information when using an online platform, which could make them less likely to be open during therapy sessions.
- Privacy issues: Finding a quiet place for online therapy sessions can be challenging and distractions can interfere with the therapy process.
- Severe anxiety: Online therapy may not be appropriate for those with severe anxiety.
- Diagnosis limitations: Most online therapy providers can help treat but not diagnose mental health conditions.
- Lack of body language: If the camera is not positioned optimally, it may be difficult for the therapist to observe the patient’s body language.
- Not for emergency situations: Online therapy for anxiety is not appropriate for emergency situations.
While online therapy has its benefits, it may not be the best option for everyone. Weighing the pros and cons can help determine if it’s the right choice for you. As with any type of therapy, it’s important to find a licensed and qualified therapist who can provide effective treatment.
Can Online Therapy for Anxiety be Effective?
Online therapy can be a convenient and effective way for people to receive treatment for anxiety. However, it’s important to note that not all online therapy options are created equal. Here are some things to consider when evaluating whether online therapy for anxiety can work for you.
Access to Treatment
One of the biggest advantages of online therapy is the increased access to treatment options. People who live in rural or remote areas may have limited access to mental health providers in their local area. Online therapy can help connect these individuals with licensed providers who specialize in anxiety treatment, regardless of location.
Online therapy can also be more convenient for people with busy schedules. Scheduling appointments can be challenging, especially if you need to take time off work or arrange for childcare. Online therapy allows you to attend sessions from the comfort of your own home, reducing the time and cost associated with travel.
When considering online therapy, it’s important to find a licensed mental health provider who has experience treating anxiety. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based treatment for anxiety that has been shown to be effective in online formats. Other types of therapy may not be as effective online.
Effectiveness of Online Therapy for Anxiety
Several studies have found that online therapy can be effective in reducing symptoms of anxiety. For example, a review published in Health Psychology and Behavioral Medicine found that internet-based interventions like therapist-guided cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can be effective in reducing anxiety symptoms.
Overall, online therapy can be an effective treatment option for people with anxiety. However, it’s important to find a licensed mental health provider who has experience treating anxiety and who uses evidence-based treatments like CBT.
Who is a Good Candidate for Online Therapy for Anxiety?
Accessing in-person therapy for anxiety is not always an option, especially for those with busy schedules, transportation issues, or living in areas with limited mental health services. Online therapy has emerged as a viable alternative, but who is it best suited for?
Mild to Moderate Anxiety
Symptoms Online therapy for anxiety is most suitable for people with mild to moderate symptoms. It can be an effective treatment option for individuals who experience anxiety but are not in crisis.
Flexibility and Accessibility
People with busy schedules and transportation difficulties often benefit from the flexibility and accessibility of online appointments. According to Dr. Nicole Siegfried, Chief Clinical Officer at Lightfully Behavioral Health in Birmingham, Alabama, online therapy is ideal for people who have limited time to travel to appointments.
Panic Disorder or Agoraphobia
People with panic disorder or agoraphobia, a fear of entering open and crowded spaces or of being in environments where escape may be difficult, may be particularly good candidates for online therapy. They can receive therapy from the comfort of their own home, which can help reduce anxiety and stress associated with traveling to appointments.
Not Suitable for Everyone
Those who have difficulty with technology may not be good candidates for online services. Navigating technology may create added anxiety, which may interfere with its effectiveness. Additionally, online therapy is not appropriate for emergency situations. If someone has thoughts of hurting themselves or others or needs emergency attention, it’s best to seek emergency help right away. Call 911 if you have plans to hurt yourself or others. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline if you’re having suicidal thoughts.
Online therapy for anxiety is an effective treatment option for people with mild to moderate anxiety symptoms, busy schedules, or transportation difficulties. However, it’s not for everyone, and people who have difficulty with technology or who are experiencing an emergency should seek help elsewhere. It’s important to consult with a licensed mental health provider to determine whether online therapy is the right choice for you.
How to Determine if You Need Therapy for Anxiety
If you’re experiencing symptoms of anxiety, you may be wondering if you need therapy. Anxiety can manifest in various ways, but the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) identifies some common symptoms to look out for. Here’s what you need to know.
Common Symptoms of Anxiety
According to the NIMH, the following are some of the most common symptoms of anxiety:
- Feeling restless, on edge, or irritable
- Difficulty concentrating
- Muscle tension and sleeping problems
- Difficulty controlling feelings of worry
- Heart palpitations or a pounding heartbeat
- Sweating, trembling, or shaking
- Shortness of breath
- Feelings of being out of control and of impending doom
- Irrational fears or excessive worry about encountering a feared object or situation (phobias)
Different Forms of Anxiety
There are various forms of anxiety, including generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Each form may present unique symptoms and require different types of treatment.
Talking to Your Doctor
If you’re unsure if you need therapy, talking to your doctor can help determine the form of anxiety that most closely matches your symptoms. They can also provide information about different treatment options, including therapy, medication, or a combination of both. Remember, seeking help for anxiety is a sign of strength, and it can lead to a happier, healthier life.
Can Online Therapy Platforms for Anxiety Prescribe Medication?
Online therapy platforms for anxiety have become increasingly popular due to their convenience and accessibility. However, one common question that arises is whether these platforms can prescribe medication. In this article, we will explore the answer to this question and provide information on how medication services work on online therapy platforms.
Can Online Therapy Platforms Prescribe Medication for Anxiety?
Most online therapy platforms for anxiety do not provide medication services. These platforms only offer therapy sessions with licensed counselors, therapists, social workers, or psychologists who are not authorized to prescribe medication. However, some platforms like Talkspace, Brightside, and Sesame have authorized providers who can offer medication services to patients. If you are unsure if your platform provides medication services, you should contact them directly.
Working with a Licensed Provider for Medication Services
If you are using a platform that provides medication services, you will work closely with a licensed provider to determine the right medication for your symptoms. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), commonly prescribed medications for anxiety include anti-anxiety drugs like benzodiazepines, beta-blockers, and antidepressants such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs).
It is important to note that medication for anxiety can have serious side effects, which is why it is crucial to work with a licensed provider who can manage your medication, not just prescribe it. You should also ask about provider availability, such as if there will be someone available to consult with if you have questions about your prescription.
What to Do if Your Platform Does Not Provide Medication Services
If your online therapy platform does not offer medication services and you need a new prescription or a refill, it is recommended to contact your doctor for guidance. Your doctor can provide you with a prescription and monitor your medication use. It is important to inform your therapist or counselor of any medication changes or updates to ensure they are aware of how it may affect your therapy.
While most online therapy platforms for anxiety do not provide medication services, some platforms offer medication services when seen by an authorized provider. It is important to work with a licensed provider who can manage your medication and to inquire about provider availability. If your platform does not provide medication services, contact your doctor for guidance. It is crucial to inform your therapist or counselor of any medication changes or updates to ensure they are aware of how it may affect your therapy.
What to Consider Before Signing Up for Online Therapy for Anxiety
If you’re considering online therapy for anxiety, you may be wondering what criteria you should use to find the right provider. Here are some factors to consider before purchasing a subscription:
- Assess the appropriateness of online counseling for your anxiety symptoms. Consult with your doctor or a mental health expert if you have any concerns.
- Evaluate your comfort level with expressing your thoughts and emotions on an online therapy platform.
- Determine if you can establish trust with someone you haven’t met in person. Assess if the pricing and insurance coverage meet your budget and expectations. Consider whether you need a monthly plan or a pay-per-session plan when searching for an affordable online therapy platform.
- Ensure that you have a private and secure space for online sessions with a stable internet connection. Consider factors such as noise, privacy, comfort, time of day, and connectivity.
- Check the technology requirements of each provider and ensure that your device is compatible with their apps and online platforms. Choose the device that you will use for your sessions (smartphone, tablet, or computer).
- Determine whether you can choose your therapist or if you are paired up based on the company’s algorithm. Also, check whether you can switch therapists after being matched.
- Research the platform or provider by reading online reviews from sites such as the BBB, TrustPilot, and Consumer Reports.
- Check if the provider offers flexible session times and days, including weekends. This can be a significant advantage of online counseling for anxiety, especially if you require early morning, late evening, or weekend sessions.
- Evaluate if the provider offers your preferred method of communication (phone, video, online chat, or text). Some online platforms offer multiple ways to connect with a therapist, while others only offer one or two.
- Check if the therapists are licensed and have a master’s degree or doctorate. Also, assess their experience with online therapy.
- Evaluate if the provider offers different types of counseling, such as therapy for teens, couples, or families.
In order to get the most out of your therapy sessions, it’s crucial to work with a therapist who you feel comfortable with, and with whom you agree on the treatment plan. The level of agreement between you and your therapist has a lot to do with the success of your therapy sessions, according to an article published in The Professional Counselor. Make sure you are willing to collaborate with your therapist and provide feedback about your goals, issues, and treatment progress to receive optimal care.
Managing Anxiety: Common Strategies
Anxiety can be a debilitating condition that can affect many aspects of your life. While online therapy can be an effective tool to help manage your anxiety, there are also some common strategies that can help reduce anxiety symptoms. Here are some strategies recommended by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA):
Getting regular exercise is a great way to reduce anxiety symptoms. Aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity five times per week. Exercise helps to release endorphins, which are natural chemicals that can improve your mood.
Meditation is a relaxation technique that can help reduce anxiety symptoms. It involves focusing your attention on your breathing, and observing your thoughts and feelings without judgment. This practice can help calm your mind and reduce feelings of stress and anxiety.
Deep Breathing Exercises
Deep breathing exercises are another relaxation technique that can help reduce anxiety symptoms. These exercises involve taking deep breaths in through your nose, holding for a few seconds, and then exhaling slowly through your mouth. This can help to slow down your heart rate and reduce feelings of anxiety.
Getting adequate rest each night is important for reducing anxiety symptoms. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep by practicing good sleep hygiene. This includes going to bed at the same time every night, avoiding caffeine and alcohol before bedtime, and creating a relaxing sleep environment.
Eating a well-balanced diet can also help reduce anxiety symptoms. Include fruits, vegetables, fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids (such as salmon), and complex carbohydrates (oatmeal, quinoa, whole-grain breads, and whole-grain cereals) in your diet. Avoid alcohol and caffeine, both of which can trigger anxiety and panic attacks.
Accepting the Uncontrollable
It’s important to try to accept that you can’t control everything. Accepting the uncontrollable can help reduce feelings of anxiety and stress. Focus on what you can control, and let go of what you can’t.
While online therapy can be an effective tool for managing anxiety, there are also many common strategies that can help reduce anxiety symptoms. Consider incorporating these strategies into your daily routine to help manage your anxiety. Remember, it’s important to work with a licensed provider who can help guide you through your journey to managing anxiety.
The Bottom Line
Living with anxiety can be challenging, but managing your symptoms with therapy, medication, coping skills, and lifestyle modifications can help. When choosing an online therapy provider for anxiety, consider factors such as therapist specialization, pricing, privacy, and platform features. Taking the time to research and ask questions can help you find the best fit for your needs.
Emergency Hotlines for Immediate Assistance
In case of an emergency, dial 911. This includes if you have thoughts of harming yourself or others. If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts, you can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255. This hotline is available 24/7 and trained counselors are ready to offer immediate assistance.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline can be reached at 800-662-HELP (4357). This hotline is a free and confidential treatment referral and information service available 24/7 for individuals facing mental or substance abuse disorders.
It’s important to have these emergency hotlines on hand, so you can get help when you need it. Don’t hesitate to reach out for assistance if you’re experiencing a mental health emergency.