Talkspace vs The Industry

Over the last year, many people have taken to online therapy to help them through their current circumstances. Life has been tough for so many of us lately but choosing to get help and guidance from the right person can make a real difference.

There seems to be more and more online therapy platforms popping up regularly. The most popular seem to be Talkspace, Betterhelp, Cerebral, and Brightside.

Our editors took the liberty of researching all four services to find out which one we'd recommend the most. Here's what we found:

Key Similarities:

  • All services offer online mental health treatment
  • All services have licensed therapists available
  • All services offer video sessions

Key Differences:

  • Talkspace and Betterhelp treat a wide range of issues
  • Brightside treats depression and anxiety only
  • Cerebral treats depression, anxiety and insomnia only
  • Talkspace and Betterhelp offer treatment for teens
  • Cerebral and Brightside can provide medication if needed

Talkspace Overview

On Talkspace, you fill out a 60 second survey that's more comprehensive than most therapist office one-sheeters. It asks about what elements of your life you're looking to delve into. From there, they will recommend 3 different therapists suitable for your needs, you can read about each one before choosing which one you feel is best for you - no automatching.

Once you have a therapist, they have 5 days a week where they're online, but you're guaranteed a response within 24 hours any time you message them.

No other service has a guaranteed response window. Depending on your plan, you can do video chats, texts, or see what other options are available.

Talkspace has an edge because they require their professionals to undergo extra training on mental healthcare in the online space. Talkspace offers multiple plans depending on your needs and goals.

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BetterHelp Overview

BetterHelp has a similar onboarding process to Talkspace, but it's more automated - there's no human element until you speak to your therapist.

BetterHelp automatically assigns you a therapist, and then you have access to them Monday-Friday.

BetterHelp offers only one plan, but if you don't need the live video sessions, Talkspace offers the cheapest solution.

Cerebral Overview

Cerebral offers treatment specifically for anxiety, depression, and insomnia only.

To sign up, you fill out a short online form to help them understand your symptoms. Similarly with Talkspace, they then match you with a list of licensed therapists that you can choose which one is right for you.

Cerebral offers three different subscription plans and can provide medication if needed.

Brightside Overview

Brightside offers treatment only for depression and anxiety only. You start by taking an assessment to tell them what you're experiencing. Then you are connected with a Therapist, who you can message or set up 30-minute video appointments with every month.

Brightside also offers audio lessons and practice exercises, building the evidence-based skills and habits you need to overcome your depression and anxiety.

Final Thoughts

If we were to recommend one service, it would be Talkspace. Talkspace has providers that specialize in a huge variety of issues, from depression, anxiety, relationship issues, teen therapy, and many more compared to Brightside and Cerebral that just covered the most common issues.

Finding the right therapist for you is the most important part when it comes to therapy. With Talkspace, you get to choose your own therapist, and you can change to another whenever you wish. This doesn't seem to be the case for all services. Plus, with Talkspace plans you can send unlimited messages to your provider, knowing they will get back to you within 24 hours.

Not to mention, the fact that Talkspace's providers receive extra training in remote care before starting as a Talkspace provider.

Whatever you are going through right now, Talkspace is there to help advise you.

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