Counseling and Recovery Services: Exploring the Options

Medically reviewed by Melissa Guarnaccia, LCSW
Updated June 17, 2024by BetterHelp Editorial Team
Content warning: Please be advised, the below article on recovery services might mention substance use-related topics that could be triggering to the reader. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance use, contact SAMHSA’s National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357). Support is available 24/7. Please see our Get Help Now page for more immediate resources.

Counseling and recovery services can be helpful in treating a variety of mental health conditions and concerns, including depression, anxiety, substance use disorder, PTSD, and integrated wellness. 

With the help of counseling recovery services, it can be possible to lead better lives and overcome barriers to treatment through education, financial assistance, support groups, and encouragement from family members and friends. 

Individual counseling, group therapy, family therapy, and mental health and substance abuse recovery programs can be a few options to consider, depending on your challenges. You can receive the support you deserve by connecting with a mental health professional in person or online.

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What are therapeutic services?

If you are experiencing mental health or addiction challenges, you are not alone. According to studies from the World Health Organization, 970 million people worldwide may live with depression, anxiety, substance use disorder, or a combination of behavioral health conditions. Mental health struggles can impact adults and children alike. 

Your mental health can impact your overall well-being and personal dignity, affecting your day-to-day life and relationships, but help is available. Counseling and recovery services can provide effective mental health treatment to help kickstart the healing process, often at affordable costs per appointment. 

Counseling may be used as an umbrella term for the therapeutic activities offered by psychologists and social workers. Therapists can help clients better understand their issues, develop effective problem-solving strategies, and improve relationships with others.

On the other hand, recovery services usually focus on addiction treatment. This type of therapy can help individuals identify triggers that lead to substance use and develop coping skills to manage cravings. Recovery services can provide resources to individuals on their journey to sobriety.

This article explores the types of mental health conditions that counseling and recovery services can address, the benefits of seeking professional help, and how to find the right treatment option for you.

No matter your situation, you can begin your path toward a healthier life with patience and dedication alongside guidance from professionals.


Understanding mental health disorders & addiction

Mental health conditions can take many forms and affect different parts of the body and mind. Depression, anxiety, PTSD, and substance use disorder are mental health conditions that counseling and recovery centers can help you manage.


Depression can be a serious mental illness affecting how individuals feel, think, and behave. It can cause persistent sadness and a loss of interest in activities that were once enjoyable. Depression can also lead to difficulty concentrating, sleeping too much or too little, and physical symptoms such as fatigue and chest pain.

Depression may result from a traumatic experience, a medical condition, or chemical imbalances in the brain. For example, low serotonin, a brain chemical responsible for mood control, has been linked to depression in numerous clinical studies. Genetics and environmental factors can increase an individual’s risks of developing depression.


Anxiety is another mental health challenge that counseling and recovery centers can help manage. Anxiety often involves feelings of fear, nervousness, and uneasiness in situations that may or may not be dangerous. Anxiety disorders can consist of specific phobias, post-traumatic stress disorder, and panic disorder, for example. 

Anxiety can be caused by various factors, including external stressors, genetics, and brain chemistry. Additionally, depression and substance use can trigger or worsen anxiety in individuals predisposed to it. Anxiety can affect how our brains work, but it can also have physiological effects. Studies have found that anxiety disorders are often associated with increased inflammation, which can lead to physical problems such as headaches and muscle pain.


Post-traumatic stress disorder is an anxiety disorder that can occur after exposure to a traumatic event. It is frequently characterized by persistent intrusive thoughts, nightmares, flashbacks, and an inability to cope with everyday life. PTSD can also cause physical symptoms such as chest pain, rapid heart rate, and dizziness, for example.

PTSD can affect regions of the brain associated with fear and memory, including the hippocampus, amygdala, and medial prefrontal cortex. It can cause changes in neural pathways, potentially leading to increased hyperarousal and decreased emotional control.

Substance use disorder
Substance use disorder is another mental health concern that can be addressed through counseling and recovery services. Substance use disorder (SUD) is a chronic condition that can result in individuals being unable to control or limit their substance use despite harmful consequences. It can involve the misuse of alcohol, drugs, or both and is often accompanied by mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.

Substance use disorder can interfere with how our neurons process information, potentially leading to impaired decision-making and trouble with memory. It may also affect the brain's natural reward system, which can create a dependency on drugs or alcohol to feel pleasure.

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Overcoming barriers to seeking help

Even though counseling and recovery services can provide valuable support, some individuals may hesitate to seek help. Stigma related to mental health services can be one of the most common barriers to seeking help. Mental health and addiction concerns are often stigmatized, sometimes making individuals feel ashamed or embarrassed about their experiences.

Financial constraints can also be a barrier to seeking help. Many people may be unable to afford treatment or lack insurance coverage. Some individuals may also fear judgment or negative reactions from friends and family. This fear can be an obstacle to seeking help. Still, it can be important to remember that many people are supportive and understanding of mental health and addiction struggles.

Potential methods of overcoming these barriers include:

  • Educating oneself about the benefits of treatment - Learning more about how counseling and recovery services can help individuals with mental health and addiction challenges can empower individuals to seek help.
  • Finding financial assistance or sliding scale options - Identifying resources such as insurance coverage, community funding, or sliding scales can make treatment more reachable.
  • Reaching out to support groups or online communities - Support groups and online communities can provide safe spaces to talk about mental health and addiction challenges.

Removing oneself from negative or toxic relationships - Taking steps to distance oneself from individuals who are not supportive of mental health and addiction treatment can create a more positive environment for seeking support.

It can be important to remember that seeking counseling and recovery services is often an act of self-care and courage. Breaking free of the stigma and taking control of one's mental health can be crucial to leading a life of fulfillment. With the proper treatment, individuals can start identifying and addressing underlying concerns that may be contributing to their mental health and addiction challenges.

A licensed therapist can provide guidance, support, and resources to help individuals move forward on the path to recovery. Through therapy, individuals can explore their feelings, process difficult emotions, and identify strategies for managing their mental health.

A  recent clinical study found that cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can effectively address mental health and addiction challenges. Further, online CBT has been determined effective in managing the challenges associated with mental illness. In this regard, online therapy can offer some advantages over in-person treatment. The fact that it is available and convenient, for instance, may be two of the most notable benefits of online therapy.

The journey to recovery may not be easy, but with the right help and guidance, you can lead a healthier life. Implementing online therapy into your recovery plan can be decisive in managing mental health and addiction challenges.

Exploring substance use services for recovery

Therapy can empower individuals to explore their intrinsic worth and cultivate a sense of self-respect, fostering and promoting personal dignity. Through therapeutic support, individuals can reclaim their autonomy, nurture a positive self-image, and build resilience.

Counseling and recovery services can help individuals with mental health and addiction challenges. These services may provide an environment where individuals can get to the root causes of their mental health and addiction concerns. Therapists can also help individuals develop coping mechanisms and strategies for managing symptoms.

Individual therapy

This type of counseling tends to be tailored to each patient's unique needs. It can involve talk therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, or other forms of treatment. Individual counseling can help individuals identify and address underlying issues contributing to their mental health and addiction challenges.
Group therapy

Group therapy sessions can provide a safe space for individuals to talk about their concerns and challenges in the presence of peers. Group therapy can help individuals build support systems, develop healthier communication patterns, and gain insight into themselves and others.

Family therapy

This type of therapy typically focuses on family dynamics and how they may affect an individual's mental health. It can provide a space for families to resolve conflicts, understand each other better, and build stronger relationships.

Addiction services

These programs frequently offer support and resources to individuals living with addiction. They can provide individual counseling, group therapy, educational classes, and medical treatment.

Counseling and recovery services can be vital for helping individuals manage mental health, addiction, and substance misuse challenges. They can help individuals create strategies for managing symptoms, gain insight into themselves and their relationships, and build healthier support systems. With treatment, individuals can improve their quality of life.


Mental health may encompass a variety of concerns, from addiction to depression and anxiety. These conditions can alter the way you think, feel, and behave. Long-term mental illness can significantly impact your physical and emotional well-being. Seeking counseling, substance abuse services, or recovery services can be an important step in managing your mental health and addiction challenges and in promoting personal dignity.

Online therapy can provide convenience, availability, and support to help individuals explore underlying concerns and develop strategies for managing mental health. To connect with an online counselor who specializes in recovery, contact BetterHelp today.

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