The Best 3 Alternatives to Private Therapy

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Deciding to see a therapist is a significant step when it comes to taking care of your mental well-being. There are several types of therapy that you can choose from. When visiting a therapist, it is very crucial for one to visit a licensed therapist. Having a license shows that the therapist has got extensive postgraduate counseling which may include up to 3,000 hours of required supervised experience. It also means that the therapist has passed a licensing exam.

However, hiring a licensed therapist might be costly, and you may not have the right budget to hire one. You could try online counseling, local support groups, or maybe an app. This article talks about some of the alternatives that you can use to get therapy.

1. Local support groups

If you are experiencing postpartum depression, eating disorders, coping with grief or loss, or experiencing alcohol and substance use, attending a local support group can be very beneficial to you. Support group therapies connect you with other people who are going through a similar experience. It is different from individual therapy. Individual therapists usually give direct advice, while support groups allow one to ask for other people’s opinions.

Hearing people share their stories can also be healing since it reminds you that you are not alone. This can be especially good for people that are suffering from an illness like cancer or those that are dealing with grief.  But before joining a local support group, you can ask the group leader more about the group like how the group participants engage with each other and even the structure of the group.

2. Therapy websites and apps

You can also get mental help by reading articles/blogs, or from therapy apps such as Talkspace. These therapy websites offer in-depth information on therapy that can make you knowledgeable. Moreover, they offer an important service that allows people who can’t afford therapy to have unlimited access for a fraction of the cost.

These websites can teach you how to meditate, relax, and even do breathing exercises. However, the real benefit is self-education. It’s important to understand what issues you are dealing with before talking with a licensed therapist. As for mental health apps: they can also help you to come up with a daily habit of self-care. Meditation can reduce stress and increase one’s well-being. According to American Psychological Association [APA], online therapy is also as helpful as meeting with a therapist in person.

3. Sliding scale therapists

Sliding scale therapists are psychologists, psychotherapists, and social workers who adjust their hourly rates to make therapy more affordable to their clients. If you are paying your therapy fee from your pocket or your insurance provider doesn’t offer specialists, getting this type of therapist would be the best option.

All mental health providers are trained to treat health issues such as depression, anxiety, and adjustments. However, not all these providers specialize in treating concerns such as postpartum depression or post-traumatic stress disorder. Individuals that are seeking help for these health issues may benefit from finding a provider who will slide their scale.

Some of the mental health directories, such as GoodTherapy.org or Psychology Today, allow you to look for sliding-scale therapists who practice in cities across the country.  It is worth noting that you should ask a therapist if they have low-cost services during your first session or when you call them to set up an appointment.

The bottom line is this: don’t fret. There are a range of good alternatives to traditional therapy. Keep in mind that if you are dealing with a mental illness, therapy is a must. But, you don’t need traditional counseling that breaks the bank.

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