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I Need Help. Can I Afford Therapy?

We are living in a time where many people are facing unprecedented financial hardships. Finances can be a barrier when it comes to emotional wellness. Worrying about money may impact our mental health substantially. When you don’t have much expendable income, it means you need to cut items out of your budget. Unfortunately, sometimes that means removing things that are necessary like therapy. It’s important to cut corners where you can, but when it comes to your wellbeing, cutting corners is dangerous. You don’t have to take out therapy from your life. Mental health care is more affordable than you think. It’s all about looking in the right places.

Contact your insurance company

When you’re seeking mental health treatment, the first thing that you can do is ask for a referral to a therapist from a doctor. It’s particularly useful to do this if you have health insurance because your provider knows who covers you. You can also call your insurance company to see who is covered. Maybe you have an insurance plan that doesn’t cover enough mental health-related treatment. Perhaps, you are paying for private insurance, but you qualify for something cheaper like state coverage or Medicaid. If that’s the case, look for a more affordable insurance plan. When you call your provider or look on their website, think about your needs and see what providers you can find who meet them. For example, if you have OCD, request someone who specializes in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.

Sliding scale therapy and other options

Another option to look into is therapists who offer sliding scale rates. Some therapists can negotiate their rate based on your income. If that; ‘s the case, they will typically state it on their website, but it never hurts to call and ask. If they say no, you can ask and see if they know of someone who does offer a sliding scale rate. If you are really in a pinch, there are sometimes free groups for specific issues or modes of therapy that you can find through a quick web search where you type in your geographical location and what you’re looking for in terms of a group therapy option. Community centers are another place to look. If you are a university student, it’s almost sure that mental health services will be available through providers that work with your school.

Online counseling

Online counseling, also known as telehealth, is becoming increasingly popular. Since the emergence of COVID-19 many providers who primarily practiced in person in the past have switched to online medicine. However, that does not mean that their rates went down, and that’s why you may want to consider getting services through a website like BetterHelp online counseling. Sites that are built for online therapy offer far cheaper rates; sometimes, getting therapy or counseling this way can cut your bill to about one-fourth or one-third of what it might have been. The best part is that websites like BetterHelp offer a network of licensed providers, meaning that your care will be accessible and will remain high quality.

Nothing is more important than your life.

Therapy is indeed an additional expense. However, your mental health is a vital investment, so rather than thinking of mental health care as an extra bill, think of it as a non-negotiable necessity. Nothing is more important than making sure that you are in the best emotional and physical place possible. Stable mental health will help you in every area of your life including work, relationships, family, friendships, and any other endeavors. Whether you see someone online, in a private practice setting, in a community center, or at your university, put your health first and don’t be afraid to reach out for help.

Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health-related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.


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