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Looking for online help for your depression? We’ve rounded up the 7 best resources to assist various unique needs.

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If you’re looking for helpful resources for depression, you’re not alone. Depression is very common.

Mental health issues, particularly anxiety and depression, reached an all-time high during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 37% of people in the United States lived with anxiety or depression between October and December 2020.

The rate of the U.S. population that reported anxiety or depression symptoms has since declined but only by about 10%.

As of August 2021, nearly 28% of people in the United States reported feelings of anxiety or depression. This is still over 14% higher than reported rates of anxiety or depression in 2019.

As the world continues to become increasingly digital since the pandemic’s start, one of the most accessible ways to receive help for depression is online.

We’ve listed the seven best online resources for depression. Some are for a specific demographic, such as teens, the LGBTQIA+ community, or recent parents. Some are focused on treatment styles, such as general counseling, support groups, cognitive behavioral therapy, or drug prescriptions.

We considered the following criteria:

  • Cost. We looked for resources that are on the more affordable end.
  • Reviews. We looked into what users are saying about each resource and why they liked it.
  • Reputation. We considered how well-known a resource is and what kinds of ratings it has received.
  • Uniqueness. We chose resources that all offer something different from one another so that all needs can be met.

Best overall

BetterHelp

Price: $60–$90 a week (billed every 4 weeks), $240–$360 a month

BetterHelp is a subscription-based therapy platform. While it doesn’t accept insurance, there may be ways to make this service more affordable. Also, customers can cancel their subscriptions at any time.

Betterhelp is the largest online therapy provider in the world. Its primary focus is to connect individuals wanting online therapy with compatible licensed therapists.

The main benefit of Betterhelp is that it offers a range of therapy services, including video calls, phone calls, and text messaging.

Participants can message an unlimited amount with their therapist. Also, switching therapists is easy to do at any time.

Betterhelp is one of the most affordable therapy options available.

What we like

  • variety of therapy formats
  • free 7-day trial
  • allows for anonymity
  • available in the United States and United Kingdom

What to look out for

  • not covered by insurance
  • therapists can’t diagnose conditions or prescribe medication
  • therapist matching rather than choosing a therapist
  • available to people 18 years or older

Best for chatting

Talkspace

Price: $230–396 a month

Talkspace has three subscriptions options. The cheapest option doesn’t offer live sessions but provides unlimited text, video, and audio messaging in which your therapist will respond to you daily Monday through Friday.

The more expensive packages provide either 1 live 30-minute session a month or 4 live 30-minute sessions a month.

Talkspace provides therapy for individuals, couples, and teens and an option for psychiatry assistance to receive prescriptions for medication.

After a brief assessment during the sign-up process, you’ll be matched with three therapists from which you can choose. You can switch therapists at any point for no extra cost.

Talkspace is likely the best online therapy platform for those looking to message a licensed therapist at any point in the day.

If you’re more interested in weekly live video sessions with a therapist, BetterHelp may be the better option.

What we like

  • available to teens
  • possibility to receive medication prescriptions through a psychiatrist
  • ability to choose a therapist out of three options
  • accepts insurance

What to look out for

  • only higher-priced plans include live sessions
  • not covered by Medicare and Medicaid

Best for LGBTQIA+

Pride Counseling

Price: $60–$90 a week (billed every 4 weeks), $240–$360 a month

Members of the LGBTQIA+ community, particularly younger folks, are disproportionately affected by mental health. This reality was made even more evident during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

For instance, the Trevor Project revealed that as many as 59% of LGBTQ youth and 66% of trans and nonbinary youth reported depression symptoms during the pandemic, compared with 29% of straight/cisgender youth.

Because the LGBTQIA+ community tends to face mental health issues more frequently than most straight, cisgender folks, BetterHelp created Pride Counseling specifically to help the LGBTQIA+ community access therapy.

Like Talkspace, Pride Counseling is an online therapy provider that matches clients with licensed therapists and provides unlimited messaging and live online therapies sessions. What’s different from Talkspace is that the therapists on this platform specialize in the LGBTQIA+ community.

As with BetterHelp, you’ll be matched with a therapist after an initial assessment but can switch to a different counselor at any point. Plus, you can cancel your subscription at any time.

What we like

  • specialized care for the LGBTQIA+ community
  • subscription cancelable at any time
  • variety of therapy formats, including messaging, phone, video, and chat
  • available in the United States and United Kingdom

What to look out for

  • doesn’t accept insurance
  • therapists can’t diagnose conditions or prescribe medication
  • therapist matching rather than choosing a therapist
  • available to people 18 years or older

Best for teens

Teen Counseling

Price: $60–$90 a week (billed every 4 weeks), $240–$360 a month

Although some online platforms like Talkspace offer services for teens, Teen Counseling is an online therapy provider specializing solely in teen counseling.

Like Pride Counseling, Teen Counseling is a subsidiary of BetterHelp, and as with BetterHelp, clients can switch therapists or cancel their subscription at any time.

According to the Teen Counseling website, there are over 10,000 licensed therapists trained in working with teens. What’s unique about Teen Counseling is that the therapist will have private sessions with the parents and the teen. Each session is private unless safety concerns arise.

What we like

  • specialized service for teens ages 13–19 years
  • therapy formats include messaging, phone, video, and chat
  • possibility to switch therapists and cancel at any point
  • available in the United States and United Kingdom

What to look out for

  • therapist matching rather than choosing a therapist
  • doesn’t accept insurance
  • parent or legal guardian has to sign up first and invite the teen
  • therapists can’t diagnose conditions or prescribe medication

Best for postpartum depression

Postpartum Support International

Price: free

Postpartum Support International (PSI) offers a variety of services, all free of charge.

It’s an online educational platform to spread awareness about postpartum depression and to assist parents who are experiencing it. PSI works to support parents of any gender.

Although many think only mothers can experience postpartum depression, in reality, many fathers face postpartum depression as well.

The stats paint a clear picture. While approximately 10% to 15% of women experience postpartum depression after delivery, with 25% to 50% of these experiencing symptoms for more than 6 months, about 10% of men will experience some form of postpartum depression in the first 3 months as well.

PSI offers a wide range of services for recent parents, including:

  • a helpline
  • online support groups
  • local support group information
  • peer mentor programs
  • online chat forums with postpartum experts

What we like

  • offers a variety of services, all free of charge
  • resources in English, Spanish, German, French, and Hebrew
  • helplines via phone or text in English and Spanish
  • advocates for legislation and research for perinatal mental health

What to look out for

  • not an online therapy platform
  • support group meeting times are listed in Pacific Time

Best for cognitive behavioral therapy

Online-Therapy.com

Price: $39.95–$79.95 a week

Online-Therapy.com offers three subscription packages. Plus, the first month is 20% off, and customers can change packages or cancel at any time.

Online-Therapy.com is a more action-focused platform than other online therapy providers, such as BetterHelp or Talkspace.

For instance, Online-Therapy.com not only offers therapy sessions and messaging with a therapist, but also:

  • worksheets
  • yoga and meditation videos
  • journal prompts
  • activity plans
  • tests

The focus of this platform is less on live therapy sessions and more on activities inspired by cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). However, if you’re interested in 30-minute live sessions with a licensed therapist as well, you can choose one of the higher-tier packages that include this service.

What we like

  • resources in addition to therapy
  • allows for anonymity
  • subscriptions can be put on hold if needed

What to look out for

  • live therapy sessions only included in more expensive subscription packages
  • lowest tier package includes only daily therapist replies Monday through Friday
  • doesn’t accept insurance
  • therapist matching rather than choosing a therapist
  • available to people 18 years or older

Best for receiving medical prescriptions

Lemonaid

Price: $95 a month for depression and anxiety services; otherwise, $25 consultation fee

Lemonaid is a national telehealth service that prescribes medication for various health issues. After answering an online forum on your health history and speaking directly with a medical professional, clients will receive a medical prescription and have their medication delivered in the mail.

Lemonaid typically charges a $25 consultation fee, which covers an evaluation by a doctor or nurse practitioner and a prescription. The cost of the medicine itself is separate.

Once you receive your prescription, you can opt for delivery, which Lemonaid will provide for free, or you can choose to have your prescription sent to your local pharmacy.

However, depression and anxiety services are a fixed monthly fee that covers consultations and medicines prescribed and shipped through Lemonaid.

If you’re interested in receiving medical prescriptions without having to leave your home, Lemonaid could be a good option for you.

What we like

  • mail-order pharmacy (delivery typically within 2–3 days in discrete packaging)
  • telehealth service with access to doctors and nurse practitioners
  • available in all 50 states and Washington D.C.

What to look out for

  • not an online therapy platform
  • anxiety and depression service available to people between the ages of 25–60 years
  • consultation not covered by insurance

There’s a range of options for getting help online for depression, no matter who you are. You could speak with a licensed therapist over video chat, phone, or text message, finding self-guided therapy tools, AI-based therapy, online group therapy, and more.

Even within each of these categories, there are resources for specific demographics, such as teens, people in relationships, recent parents, and the LGBTQIA+ community.

The hardest part is often knowing how to find these resources and determining which one is best for you. The best advice is to simply begin.

Finding the right fit for online therapy sometimes takes time, so consider starting as soon as you can. It may feel intimidating, but these resources will help guide you through each step of the process.