The chaos and troubles of life necessitate therapy if one is to cope. However, therapy can be expensive and inaccessible. Fortunately, technology has made it easier for people to get the help they need through online therapy. This article looks at two of the most popular online therapy providers, BetterHelp and Talkspace, assessing their similarities and differences to help you make an informed choice.
BetterHelp is among the world’s largest online therapy platforms. It has an extensive network of over 25,000 licensed mental health professionals, who have helped over 2.8 million individuals improve their lives. They’ll help you address anxiety, substance abuse, depression, and trauma. You can reach a licensed therapist through video, live chat, messaging, or a phone call.
Talkspace is a text-based online therapy platform that boasts of helping over 1 million individuals with various mental health issues. Upon signing up, you can talk to your therapist anytime via text, phone, or video, and they will respond at least once daily. Talkspace has licensed therapists to help you deal with anxiety, stress, depression, parenting problems, relationship problems, LGBTQIA+ issues, eating disorders, anger management, childhood abuse, mood disorders, substance abuse, and other mental health challenges.
What are the main differences between BetterHelp and Talkspace?
While BetterHelp and Talkspace are similar in certain aspects, several differences exist. For example, Talkspace offers psychiatry services, ideal for those whose mental health challenges necessitate medication. Another difference is how BetterHelp offers live video chats in its base subscription plan, while Talkspace’s basic plan lacks live video. Furthermore, Talkspace caters to clients from 13 years old, while BetterHelp is only available to individuals at least 18. You can pay for Talkspace’s services via credit card, while BetterHelp accepts PayPal payments besides credit cards.
Talkspace gives you the chance to participate in choosing a suitable therapist. When you sign up, you’ll answer some questions and then browse several therapist options to find a suitable one. In contrast, BetterHelp asks you to fill a questionnaire which the company uses to identify the most appropriate therapist to address your needs. This way, BetterHelp works to professionally pick the right therapist for you, while Talkspace allows for some subjectivity in this sensitive process.
Pros and cons of BetterHelp
• All communication options are available in each subscription plan
• You can easily switch between convenient communication channels
• Access to over 20 live group sessions moderated by therapists
• Financial help is available to those who cannot afford therapy
• Minimal participation in the therapist selection process
• Worksheets and homework make therapy feel impersonal
• No therapy services for children
• Most insurance covers won’t pay for BetterHelp therapy
• No psychiatry therapy services
Pros and cons of Talkspace
• Offers psychiatry therapy services
• Participation in the therapist selection process
• Biannual and quarterly payments attract considerable discounts
• Fast and guaranteed response times
• Live video sessions only available on the pricier subscription plans
• Weekly priced plans still require a monthly subscription
• Therapists take time to connect with patients after the selection process
• Limited therapists’ weekly correspondence
Which is the right online therapy platform for you?
The answer to this question depends mainly on your mental health challenges and financial situation. Both offer the convenience of online communication, but Talkspace offers psychiatry services suitable for specific patients. Talkspace also accepts insurance payments, but you can’t access live video chats on the basic plan, and the therapists aren’t freely available round the clock. Therefore, it comes down to whether you wish to participate in the therapist selection process, whether you intend to pay via insurance, whether you need your therapist available all the time, and whether you need psychiatry therapy services.