Can Online Therapy Sites Work For You?

By Sarah Fader

Updated December 10, 2018

Reviewer Kimberly L Brownridge , LPC, NCC, BCPC Counsel The Mind, LLC

Obviously, everyone has a bad day or goes through periods of sadness on occasion. However, if you find that you are feeling down for an extended period of time or you just cannot seem to get rid of your anxiety, you need to talk to someone. Many people are either afraid or cannot afford to go to a psychologist or therapist, but with online therapy, you can get the help you need without even leaving your home. This is especially beneficial to those who have a hard time talking to people (especially face-to-face) or have severe anxiety or panic attacks.


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Why Choose Online Therapy?

Being able to talk to someone in the comforts of your own home can make a world of difference to a person who has an extremely busy schedule, cannot take off from work, has no insurance, or those who just do not want to be judged. There are many options for someone looking for online therapy such as one-on-one chatting with an experienced therapist, group chats with others who have similar issues, and video conferencing.

Also, an astounding 96% of those who have tried online therapy have reported they were satisfied with their treatment. The options are endless. There is a huge supply of topic choices from depression to schizophrenia and anxiety to bipolar disorder. You can find an online therapy site that is right for you by just typing a few words into your browser. Most of them have free chat rooms or trial periods that you can try.


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How Do Online Therapy Sites Work?

It has many names, some of which include cybertherapy, telehealth, e-counseling, and e-therapy. However, they all boil down to one thing: you can get counseling from home anonymously and at a much lower cost than conventional therapy. When you sign up, you can be assigned a therapist or listener right away or you can just browse the group chat rooms. Some websites also have virtual self-help therapy where you can work on your own with activities and videos that can help guide you through your journey to better mental health. While there are many services offered for the different subjects and venues, the most common include:

  • One-on-one online chat with a therapist or counselor
  • Group chats
  • Text messaging
  • Live telephone therapy
  • Video sessions
  • Online videoconferencing
  • Email chatting
  • Virtual self-help


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The Basic Facts

With approximately 43 million Americans suffering from mental health disorders, there are not nearly enough traditional psychologists and therapists to handle them all. If you have ever tried to make an appointment with one of them, you know what I am talking about. You may have to wait six months just to get to your first appointment. However, with online therapy, you (and your therapist) can communicate anytime, day or night.

If you have a few minutes to chat or you are having a bad day and you need to vent, you can just send a text from your phone or other electronic device and your counselor will answer when they get the chance. No appointment necessary. On average, therapists check their messages twice a day and will answer you within 12 hours, which is a lot better than six months!


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