Home Psychology BetterHelp Reviews: Cost, Features, and Cons

BetterHelp Reviews: Cost, Features, and Cons

Psychology
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Last update: Jan 27
Last update: Jan 27
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Betterhelp reviews
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Mental health is an important determinant of the quality of our lives. The good thing is that people are finally coming to realize this. Today, most of the world deals with mental health issues with less to no stigma, unlike in the past. 

BetterHelp is a platform that easily connects you to a real therapist. You fill out an online form, after which they pair you with an ideal specialist. But what else is involved, and is the app effective?

Summary

BetterHelp’s online mental health services have been a game-changer in the industry. Compared to traditional mental health programs, they offer diverse ways to access mental healthcare. 

BetterHelp logo
BetterHelp
  • Access to mental healthcare regardless of your sexual orientation, including pride counseling from accredited psychologists
  • An easy-to-use app allows you to switch to a new therapist
  • Financial aid to those who qualify
Our Rating:
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4.5
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Diverse ways to access care
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Available at any time of the day
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It is affordable
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They have qualified therapists
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They don’t accept insurance
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Can’t prescribe medications
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They only serve adults

What Is BetterHelp?

BetterHelp is among the largest online therapy platforms, connecting you with professional counselors from various backgrounds. It offers a single plan with 30-minute live sessions or text-based live chat. With a BetterHelp subscription, you can send unlimited messages between sessions and get a response within 24 hours. BetterHelp’s journaling tool and group webinars are also available to subscribers.

Even though most of the counseling they do is with couples and teens, they also help people from other groups. BetterHelp’s diverse provider network also caters to the LGBTQIA+ community (Pride counseling). By providing such alternatives, they match users with therapists who suit their needs.

After signing up for BetterHelp, you will complete a questionnaire to get matched with a therapist. It is simple to switch therapists if you decide later that you prefer to work with someone else. Remember, the symptoms of anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem are all treatable through talk therapy.

How Does BetterHelp Work?

BetterHelp lets clients choose their preferred options from the beginning to the end. That is freedom and convenience you wouldn’t have with other providers. Clients can access professional therapists easily and decide on ideal communication methods.

At the outset, customers fill out a questionnaire about themselves with complete anonymity. That enables BetterHelp to learn more about the client’s needs and preferences. It also sets the precedence for the entire process.

BetterHelp uses that information to pair clients with a suitable expert. The client and therapist get access to a safe and confidential space where they start communication. Clients can address their issues and pose inquiries to the therapist openly at this stage. 

These services carry a weekly charge between $60 and $80, billed monthly via PayPal or credit card. Keep in mind that insurance does not cover BetterHelp’s services. If a client’s insurance does cover a service, they should double-check with their provider before registering. 

BetterHelp’s support team is usually on standby to lend any guidance. Patients can fill out and submit an online therapy contact form, after which they will get help. BetterHelp also has an A-grade secure facility that protects and secures its servers. The company does not share user information with employers or partners, which guarantees you security and privacy.

Are BetterHelp therapists licensed?

All BetterHelp therapists are licensed. The platform only hires people with a master’s degree or higher and at least three years and 1,000 hours of work experience in their field of expertise. According to the company’s records, only about 15% of people who apply to work for BetterHelp get hired. 

All credentials are verified as part of the hiring procedure. It also includes a case study test and a video interview. BetterHelp’s professionals include psychologists, therapists, and clinical social workers.

Is BetterHelp Good?

BetterHelp is an industry leader in online therapy, with over 25,000 therapists and over 3 million patients. That proves that it is indeed a legitimate and trustworthy company. 

It’s been effective, and many people choose it over in-person counseling. The organization associates trust with its future growth and prosperity. 

It guarantees the following factors:

  • Safety and security of its clients
  • Compliance with the law
  • Quality and affordability
  • Privacy
  • The competence of its therapists
  • Easy usability of its app and website

BetterHelp Cost

Although not free, BetterHelp is less expensive than traditional therapy and offers competitive prices compared to other providers. If the cost of therapy makes you anxious, financial help may be available. Besides this, if you qualify for financial help, your weekly payment could be as low as $50. Of course, being familiar with how BetterHelp displays these choices in advance is beneficial.

The categories for the various price options are standard rate, discounted rate, financial aid, and insurance.

#1 Standard rate

BetterHelp’s weekly fees are $60–90 without discounts or scholarships. Those eligible for reduced fee pricing can save $15 weekly, which is why there are different possible weekly prices.

You might miss out on a discount you’re eligible for if you don’t know some basic information about what makes you eligible and if you don’t know that there are different ways to get discounts. 

#2 Discounted rate

If your answers on the registration form meet their rationale, you qualify for a 20% fee reduction that cuts your weekly cost from $80 to $65. This reduced cost makes BetterHelp’s online therapy a great option for many clients who might otherwise be unable to afford counseling costs.

By filling out the questionnaire, many folks will learn they are eligible for this charge reduction. The questionnaire has questions you must answer to determine your eligibility.

You may be eligible if you are out of work and rate your financial situation as fair or poor on the form. If you have a job and your financial situation is not “good,” you may still be eligible. That means BetterHelp will offer you the $65 per week rate as long as you clarify that you are:

  • Disabled
  • A veteran
  • A student
  • An employee with a low income

You will receive a discounted rate if you meet any of these requirements. You are eligible for this low-income discount if your yearly income is less than $50,000. Note that if you are eligible for the reduced fee discount and take it, you will not get a chance to apply for financial help later in the inquiry.

#3 Financial aid

Applying for financial help can get you a rate even lower than the standard weekly rate, sometimes as low as $48. Don’t forget that financial aid is only good for 90 days, so you’ll have to apply again after three months of treatment. The help you will get depends on how you answer a separate questionnaire about your situation.

Let’s say you can’t afford $80 a week even though you don’t meet any of the criteria for a discounted fee discount. In this case, a button to check out at the end of the questionnaire reads, “I can’t afford therapy.”

BetterHelp will then ask if you want to verify your financial aid status. You’ll need to answer questions about your job, family size, income, and residential area to move on. Checking your eligibility and answering these final questions could save you up to 40% off the regular weekly charge. Don’t skip them, even if you marked your financial situation as “excellent” earlier in the questionnaire.

If you gave consent to the question about lower fees on the financial aid application, you would not be eligible for aid. There won’t be a final “I can’t afford therapy” button where you can apply for financial help.

#4 Insurance

BetterHelp’s online therapy services are not typically covered by health insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid. The company has set its prices to be on par with, or even cheaper than, what many patients pay out of pocket due to insurance company copayments, deductibles, and other coverage restrictions.

After logging in, select “Payment Settings” from “Your Account.” There will be an option to modify or stop your subscription. You can cancel anytime, and BetterHelp will stop billing your card every four weeks. 

Follow the page and respond to certain multiple-choice questions about why you wish to cancel or switch your plan. The business will also inquire if you want to see the same therapist again in the future. You will confirm the cancellation or change of plans through email.

Why is BetterHelp so expensive?

Relatively speaking, BetterHelp therapy is not expensive. While it can be quite helpful for most people, many still fail to care for their emotional and mental health. Our quality of life can be vastly enhanced by therapeutic intervention. It is a good deal economically if you discover that online counseling and live sessions bridge the same gap as traditional, in-person treatment.

On average, traditional therapy sessions cost between $100 and $250 each. It’s possible to pay even more for therapy from some in-demand specialists. BetterHelp, on the other hand, charges much more affordable rates below $100. It is worth noting that part of the higher price is because in-person sessions require more time and overhead. 

Outside of scheduled appointments, having no dialogue with your therapist is odd. BetterHelp’s extra features, like guided journaling and chat sessions with your therapist, solve that. That and many other perks that BetterHelp offers provide excellent value for the price.

BetterHelp’s Features

By now, you must have got the gist of what BetterHelp provides on their platform. If you haven’t, they have extra tools. These will assist you in keeping tabs on your mental health and allow you to communicate with your therapist. It keeps getting better and more efficient. Below are the features to expect and enjoy when using BetterHelp therapy.

#1 Online journaling

This online therapy tool will keep a digital notebook to record your aspirations, ideas, and emotions. With its features, you can choose to generate or view all diary prompts randomly. It has journal prompts for dealing with anxiety and addressing problems in interpersonal relationships.

You’ll give your journal entry a title and start writing once you decide on a suitable prompt. You can either share your diary entries with your therapist or keep them private, which is an interesting feature.

#2 Live chat sessions

Talk to your therapist or counselor by text message at your own pace in the “Session” room. When paired with a therapist, you will receive an automated message from them. It will include their history, schooling, and message-checking habits.

You’ll be unable to talk to your therapist until you fill out another consent form and show your credentials. After you’ve done this, you can start communicating via text with your new counselor.

#3 Live phone sessions

You may consult a psychologist to get through tough situations or improve your mental health. While face-to-face counseling can be beneficial, it is hard to fit it into a busy schedule. 

It can help with the same kinds of problems you might bring up in a face-to-face therapy session. Things that may have happened at work, problems at home, difficulties with medication or relationships. Fortunately, there are more distant options, such as BetterHelp’s live phone counseling sessions. 

#4 Face-to-face session

Face-to-face counseling is a talk therapy session when a therapist meets with a client in a therapy room. It allows the client to talk about whatever is bothering them, whether a specific problem or general guidance in life.

The counselor can help find a solution by listening to the client’s story with care and patience. Choice, change, and clarity can all be influenced through counseling. It is a means of facilitating decisions and decreasing confusion and doesn’t include telling or advising a client to take a certain action.

#5 Group therapy

You can find group webinars under many categories within the “Groupinars” area. Some of these include:

  • Anxiety and depression
  • Anger management
  • Relationships
  • Skill-building series
  • Trauma
  • Wellness

You’ll find the title, start and end times, and topics for each group session in the accompanying table. Selecting “further info” will lead you to a page where you can sign up for your first session.

Every Groupinar entails a professional therapist or counselor giving a one-hour PowerPoint presentation. Though you can’t see everyone in the session, you can still communicate with one another and the therapist through a chat box.

#6 Family therapy

It is a type of psychotherapy in which everyone in the nuclear family participates in the healing process. The therapist meets with them several times to help them deal with problems that could affect how well the family works.

#7 Motivational interviewing

It is a psychotherapy method that motivates clients by helping them figure out how to deal with ambivalence in their lives. One research model phrase “ready, willing, and able” describes motivation elements. These elements are:

  • The significance of change for the patient (willingness)
  • The courage to adapt to new circumstances (ability)
  • Whether a change is a top priority right away (readiness)

Based on this model, the practitioner can tailor motivational methods to anyone based on where they are in their change process.

#8 Mindfulness therapy

Although mindfulness therapy may have a calming effect, relaxation is not the goal. The main aim is to learn to recognize and change the negative patterns of thought, emotion, and behavior that stand in the way of your development. Once you can do so, you’ll be able to interact with those facets, fine-tune them, and determine your responses.

Who Is BetterHelp for?

BetterHelp is a great tool for couples and individuals without health insurance who want to treat their mental health disorder, whether that be anxiety, depression, PTSD, or something else. 

It may also appeal to clients living in rural areas or with limited mobility. That is because they can choose professionals who fit their schedules, making it convenient and flexible. Additionally, one participates while enjoying their private space.

Due to obstacles like affordability or stigma, many people who need therapy don’t receive the proper care. BetterHelp connects such patients to online therapy and lowers those barriers. It is also less expensive and more convenient for patients and therapists alike. 

Who Shouldn’t Use BetterHelp?

Even though BetterHelp’s online services are convenient, they are not good for people who need in-person therapy. For instance, people with serious mental illnesses might not be good candidates for the telehealth system. Use online services only when they don’t expose you to more risk.

These services won’t be ideal for someone who is not conversant with computers and doesn’t have a reliable internet connection. Computer literacy will enable one to navigate the platform and participate in therapy. An internet connection links a user’s device to the platform.

Lastly, a patient contemplating suicide cannot benefit from these services. That is a serious crisis. In this type of emergency, they can’t be expected to be patient enough to go through the online processes for accessing mental health services. Such a situation is dire and calls for swift in-person intervention.

Is Online Therapy Effective?

Yes, it is. According to research, online counseling is as helpful as in-person therapy. The study found that online CBT for panic and social anxiety was as effective as face-to-face therapy. It might even be easier to open up and be vulnerable when speaking from the comfort of your own home. 

Additionally, you can speak with a professional through online counseling from anywhere in the world. In summary, the effectiveness of online therapy depends on how you connect with your therapist and the effort you are willing to put in.

Is BetterHelp Private?

BetterHelp values the safety and confidentiality of all its users. HIPAA and other state and federal laws require all therapists to protect their client’s privacy. When signing up, your real name is not required. You can avoid telling your therapist your real name by using an alias called a “nickname” in the system.

Besides this, the firm does not deal with insurance providers or employers, so it does not provide client data. If you want your therapist to talk to someone else about your treatment, they’ll need you to sign an authorization form first.

FAQs

Is BetterHelp legit?

To answer the question directly: yes. BetterHelp’s credibility comes from the fact that they are professional, efficient, and affordable.

Does insurance cover BetterHelp?

No, BetterHelp does not accept insurance. However, different insurance companies and plans have very different rules about covering individual therapy. Liaise with your health insurance provider directly, as they may pay a part of the extra service cost if you do.

Is BetterHelp worth it?

BetterHelp is worth it for its extensive service coverage. Reviewers applauded the service because it was easy to book appointments and allowed one to change therapists seamlessly.

Does BetterHelp charge you right away?

Unlike other services, BetterHelp does not immediately charge your credit card. Subscriptions on this platform get invoiced every four weeks. It’s available for weekly or monthly payments, whichever works best for you.

Can you cancel Your BetterHelp subscription?

Yes, you can. Write an email to email the platform’s customer care team. The staff will examine the request and determine whether you deserve a refund. They may assign you to a new therapist or even prolong your subscription if a refund is impossible.

BetterHelp vs. Competitors

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Sensa Health logo
BetterHelp logo
talkspace logo
hers logo
4.7 / 5
stars
4.5 / 5
stars
4.4 / 5
stars
4.3 / 5
stars

Offers personalized content

Resourceful and easy to use

Affordable online therapy

Offers personalized services

Accepts insurance

Offers flexible online therapy services

Mood journal
Guided meditation
The quick-relief feature has specialized exercises to help you soothe your mind
The assessment feature allows you to examine your weekly progress
Easy-to-follow interactive lessons make you more mindful
Enables you to plan your day and track important activities
Personalized content will guide you toward a calmer mind
Offers video, calls, and unlimited text messaging
Cheaper than in-person therapy
Allows switching therapists
Offers a 7-day free trial period intermittently
Offers flexible plans
Affordable
Easily accessible and offers prompt service
Effective treatment
Easy to use and place orders
They don’t accept insurance payments
They don’t accept insurance payments
Their services are pricey, especially if you don’t have insurance
They don’t accept insurance payments
Brand
Sensa Health logo
BetterHelp logo
talkspace logo
hers logo
Rating
4.7 / 5
stars
4.5 / 5
stars
4.4 / 5
stars
4.3 / 5
stars
Product info

Offers personalized content

Resourceful and easy to use

Affordable online therapy

Offers personalized services

Accepts insurance

Offers flexible online therapy services

Pros
Mood journal
Guided meditation
The quick-relief feature has specialized exercises to help you soothe your mind
The assessment feature allows you to examine your weekly progress
Easy-to-follow interactive lessons make you more mindful
Enables you to plan your day and track important activities
Personalized content will guide you toward a calmer mind
Offers video, calls, and unlimited text messaging
Cheaper than in-person therapy
Allows switching therapists
Offers a 7-day free trial period intermittently
Offers flexible plans
Affordable
Easily accessible and offers prompt service
Effective treatment
Easy to use and place orders
Cons
They don’t accept insurance payments
They don’t accept insurance payments
Their services are pricey, especially if you don’t have insurance
They don’t accept insurance payments

How We Tested

These are some other online therapy platforms with services that match BetterHelp’s standards. Many clients compare and contrast their services because they are all medication management platforms. More specifically, they all allow video sessions with an online therapist.

We picked them based on brand reputation, quality, effectiveness, and price.

Quality 9/10

Before choosing whether or not to subscribe to BetterHelp’s service, you should examine how the therapy quality it offers compares to both traditional in-person therapy and the offerings of its online rivals. How qualified are the therapists, and who are they? Does the teletherapy format suit the therapeutic modalities well?

Effectiveness 8/10

The effectiveness of a product or service establishes an emotional connection with its users. The easiest way to know this is to pay attention to the feedback and reviews from other users. When a platform attains a high level of effectiveness, it represents all competing providers.

Price 5/10

Given the significance of the weekly live sessions, prices are equal to in-person counseling. We prefer more clarity in the website’s pricing information. This review will inform your anticipated charges before filling out the questionnaire. That way, you will make an informed decision.

Brand reputation 9/10

The brand’s reputation is defined by how it is perceived in the market. As such, it is a very crucial determinant of the brand’s future. Reviews or feedback from users/clients informs newcomers of what to expect. For instance, BetterHelp’s reputation has contributed greatly to its success.

A Word From Our MD

Many online platforms are addressing mental health conditions; there is a network of over 25,000 professional therapists across the United States.

Some platforms allow clients to have live chats, phone calls, and video sessions with therapists. The services also include unlimited messaging, allowing clients to contact their therapist easily. Additionally, some offer financial help to their clientele.

Enrollment in any of them is easy. Just complete the signup process, after which the staff will pair you with a qualified therapist. Honesty while filling out the online forms will highlight your issue accurately. Once you do that, expect a prompt response from a therapist with a professional approach to solving your issue.

Conclusion

BetterHelp does an excellent job of matching users with qualified mental health professionals. With this software, treatment sessions can be easily scheduled, and users can give their full attention to improving their mental health. While BetterHelp does provide financial help, the service’s price tag may discourage some people from using it.

Additionally, the BetterHelp platform shouldn’t be used by people with severe mental illness or in a crisis. BetterHelp currently does not prescribe medication. Remember that mental health is important. Should you need in-person therapy sessions, look for licensed professional counselors.

Written by
Edibel Quintero, MD

Edibel Quintero is a medical doctor who graduated in 2013 from the University of Zulia and has been working in her profession since then. She specializes in obesity and nutrition, physical rehabilitation, sports massage and post-operative rehabilitation. Edibel's goal is to help people live healthier lives by educating them about food, exercise, mental wellness and other lifestyle choices that can improve their quality of life.

Betterhelp reviews

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