en de
Home
arrow
Mental Health
arrow
BetterHelp vs. Talkspace: Which Mental Health App Should You Choose?
Mental Health

BetterHelp vs. Talkspace: Which Mental Health App Should You Choose?

HR_author_photo_Edibel
Written by Edibel Quintero, RD | Medically reviewed by Medically reviewed by Rosmy Barrios, MD check
Published on January 23, 2023
65 Views
10 min

Online therapy is an affordable and convenient way to access mental health services. Both BetterHelp and Talkspace are online therapy platforms, but which one is better? We take a look at both in this review.

Betterhelp vs talkspace
Health Reporter edit

We may earn a small commission if you buy via links on our site. Learn more.

Taking care of your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Still, with mental health services difficult to come by and more expensive than those for physical health, many people turn to apps for psychiatric services.

Online therapy apps are growing in popularity as people find new ways to look after their mental health. Two such apps are Talkspace and BetterHelp. Both of these online therapy platforms allow users to book therapy sessions and make them more accessible to more people.

But which app is better?

In this Talkspace vs. BetterHelp review, we’re going to take a look at both of these online therapy services to find out which you should choose. We’ll look at the pros and cons of both to help you make the best choice for your needs. Take a look below to learn more.

Which Is Better: BetterHelp or Talkspace?

While Talkspace has many intriguing features that make it useful for online therapy, we would recommend BetterHelp. The BetterHelp app covers a huge number of mental health conditions and has specific subsidiaries for a diverse range of matters.

In addition, BetterHelp is a more affordable and accessible service for people looking for an alternative to in-person therapy.

Summary

BetterHelp is one of the largest online therapy platforms at the moment. It connects users with counselors and therapists best suited to their needs. The therapy sessions provided by BetterHelp cover everything from couples therapy to support for the LGBTQIA+ community. Most sessions are around 30 minutes, and a subscription also allows unlimited texting services.

Talkspace, on the other hand, offers text, video, and audio messaging therapy services on its app and website. The app allows users to access mental health services without having to travel for in-person therapy and offers flexible subscription plans to suit a variety of needs.

Below, we have summarized the main benefits, pros, and cons of Talkspace and BetterHelp.

BetterHelp

BetterHelp
  • Easy access to online therapy providers
  • 24/7 care
Our rating:
4.2
Learn More
Pros
  • Affordable and accessible care
  • Offers financial aid services to those who qualify
  • Safe space for the LGBTQIA+ community
  • Offers other features, like journaling
Cons
  • Doesn’t offer medication management services
  • Doesn’t accept insurance
  • Not designed for emergency situations
  • No free trial

Talkspace

Talkspace
  • Flexible subscription plans
  • No need to travel for therapy sessions
Our rating:
4.2
Learn More
Pros
  • Works with teens
  • Offers couples’ therapy
  • Easy access to online therapy
  • Accepts insurance
  • Offers psychiatric services
Cons
  • Doesn’t offer a free trial
  • Live sessions may be too short
  • Text therapy might not work for some

What Is BetterHelp?

BetterHelp is an online therapy and mental health app that combines access to a licensed therapist with other mental well-being features, like journaling and webinars. 

Subscribers are matched with a licensed mental health professional that suits their needs and can then access their support in a number of ways, including via text messaging, speaking over the phone, and in live video sessions.

Users answer a few questions before they begin using the app and are then matched up with their therapist within 24 hours. From here, they can access online therapy services whenever they need and in whichever communication method suits them best. They can expect a response within 24 hours from BetterHelp therapists.

What Is Talkspace?

Talkspace is a website and a smartphone app that offers online therapy to its users. The online mental health services that Talkspace provides include couples therapy, therapy for teens, and psychiatric services with medication management.

Users of the Talkspace app have access to licensed therapists and can communicate via texts, audio messaging, video calls, and live sessions. The app also has clinical progress-tracking features and mental health tools that users can access outside of therapy.

Like many other online therapy companies, Talkspace is an excellent way for people to access therapy without having to travel for in-person therapy sessions.

Types of Services

Both of these online therapy companies offer a diverse range of mental health tools. Below, we have summarized the key services that each app offers its users.

BetterHelp services

BetterHelp offers services that can be split into three main categories: individual online therapy, couples therapy, and teen therapy. 

They have mental health professionals who specialize in a variety of fields, including stress and anxiety, relationships, parenting, eating disorders, sleep therapy, depression, repressed trauma, anger, familial issues and family therapists, LGBTQIA+ concerns, grief, religion and faith, and self-esteem.

On top of access to licensed therapists, BetterHelp also has other features like journaling and webinars, which can be accessed with a subscription.

Talkspace services

Talkspace services include individual sessions, couples sessions, sessions for teens, therapy for veterans, and specific insomnia therapy. In addition, the app also offers access to psychiatry services, which include medication management. 

The medication management services allow users to easily access their meds and work with a prescribing doctor to monitor progress.

The therapists who work with Talkspace are trained in various fields, including stress and anxiety, depression, addiction, eating disorders, and post-traumatic stress disorder.

BetterHelp vs. Talkspace Pros

To help you make the best decision for your mental health needs, we have explored the pros of the Talkspace and BetterHelp apps so that you can find an online therapy app that works for you.

BetterHelp pros

The BetterHelp pros are summarized below.

#1 Flexible approach to therapy sessions

After completing the initial assessment, you are quickly matched with one of the BetterHelp therapists that suit your needs best. From here, you can choose the way you communicate with your therapist. This means that if you prefer text-based therapy services, you can choose to only communicate that way.

This flexibility is great for people who have busy lives and don’t have the time for in-person therapy. It can also make your therapy experience more comfortable as you choose the format.

#2 Matches you with a therapist based on your needs

The BetterHelp app opens with a quiz that helps to determine the best therapist for you. You may be referred to BetterHelp subsidiaries, like Pride Counseling or Teen Counseling, and therapist availability does impact who you get to work with.

However, this personalized approach to therapist matching means you will be working with someone who can actually help you. In addition, it is very easy to switch therapists if you don’t feel your current one is working for you.

#3 Other in-app features

On top of the therapy service, the BetterHelp app offers users other features to support their work toward better mental well-being. These include webinars on mental health topics, group sessions, and journaling features.

These features make BetterHelp a more well-rounded mental health app and can support users’ mental health even when they are not accessing the therapy service.

Talkspace pros

The pros of the Talkspace app are summarized below.

#1 Lots of subscription plans

The Talkspace subscription plans cover many different budgets, meaning that you can access Talkspace no matter your financial situation. Plans include a mix of communication methods, text-only services, and psychiatry services.

As well as helping the app be more accessible to a range of budgets, the flexibility of subscription plans with Talkspace means that users can find the communication method they are most comfortable using for their sessions.

#2 Psychiatry services available

Unlike BetterHelp, Talkspace has an option for psychiatry services. These services offer users an easy way to access medications that they need and allow them to track their clinical progress with a prescribing doctor.

Users can pick up prescriptions from local pharmacies and get the medications that they need when they need them. These services also come with follow-up sessions to ensure the medications are working properly.

#3 Easy to switch therapists if needed

Although Talkspace assigns a therapist to you, you can easily switch to a different person if you find the one you were assigned is not working for you. This means that users can get the best out of the service and are not stuck paying for a service that they don’t think is working.

BetterHelp vs. Talkspace Cons

Both Talkspace and BetterHelp have drawbacks, which we have summarized below. Take a look to get the full picture of both of these apps.

BetterHelp cons

The cons of BetterHelp are summarized below.

#1 Doesn’t accept insurance

While BetterHelp does offer a more affordable approach to mental healthcare, it doesn’t accept insurance, which means that if you have insurance, you can’t use it to access these services. BetterHelp may be more suited for people who don’t have insurance.

#2 No free trial

BetterHelp does not offer a free trial of its premium features, which means that you can’t test it out. Being able to have a trial run of the app would be beneficial to help people decide if it is worth the money they will spend on it. In addition, there is no free version of the app, which means you essentially go in blind when using BetterHelp.

Talkspace cons

The cons of the Talkspace app are summarized below.

#1 Expensive treatment option

Talkspace is an expensive service. Even the cheapest subscription for only text-based therapy is $69 per week. This is incredibly expensive for limited services and is unlikely to be accessible to many people.

#2 Poor customer service

Many users have reported experiencing very little customer support if they have problems with the Talkspace app. There is currently no contact phone number on the Talkspace site, and users have reported slow and lackluster responses when using the customer service email to report issues.

Special Features

While Talkspace and BetterHelp offer similar services, they both have specific features that make them slightly different. We have summarized the special features that make each app stand out below.

BetterHelp features

BetterHelp allows access to a huge range of therapists and has a number of subsidiaries that offer services relating to LGBTQIA+ matters, faith matters, and services for teens. These separate services offer users specified and dedicated help for a diversity of mental health needs.

Talkspace features

Talkspace differs from BetterHelp in that it has medication management features, which means that users can get medication prescribed by licensed doctors and pick it up at a local pharmacy. This feature makes Talkspace stand out from other online therapy apps.

BetterHelp vs. Talkspace Cost

While both of these apps do cost less than traditional in-person therapy, they do require subscriptions. We have given a brief summary of the subscription plans for both below.

How much is BetterHelp?

BetterHelp has a few different subscription plans. These are as follows.

  • Standard rate: The standard rate for BetterHelp is between $60 and $90 per week. Some may be eligible for slight reductions, which is why the price differs.
  • Discounted rate: There are a few ways you may be eligible for the discounted rate, including being a veteran, being on a lower income, being a student, and having a disability. The discounted rate is between $65 and $80 per week.
  • Financial aid: This rate can be as low as $48 per week but does require more submissions than the other rates. It is also only valid for 90 days, so you will have to reapply.

How much is Talkspace?

Talkspace has a number of subscription plans that cover different communication and therapy needs. These are as follows.

  • Talkspace therapy:
    • Messaging therapy (text messages only) – $69 per week
    • Video and messaging therapy – from $99 per week
    • Video, messaging, and additional workshops – from $109 per week
  • Talkspace psychiatry services:
    • Initial assessment – $249
    • Follow-up session – $125 per session
  • Couples therapy:
    • From $369 per month

Comparison Table

Sensa
BetterHelp
Talkspace
4.5
4.2
4.2

Content specific to each person

Educational content to help users progress

Quick-Relief for moments of panic

Daily activities

Mood journal to track moods and triggers

Affordable and accessible care

Offers financial aid services to those who qualify

Safe space for the LGBTQIA+ community

Offers other features like journaling

Works with teens

Offers couples therapy

Easy access to online therapy

Accepts insurance

Offers psychiatric services

No video content

Doesn’t offer medication management services

Doesn’t accept insurance

Not designed for emergency situations

No free trial

Doesn’t offer a free trial

Live sessions may be too short

Text therapy might not work for some

Brand
Sensa
BetterHelp
Talkspace
Overall Rating
4.5
4.2
4.2
Pros

Content specific to each person

Educational content to help users progress

Quick-Relief for moments of panic

Daily activities

Mood journal to track moods and triggers

Affordable and accessible care

Offers financial aid services to those who qualify

Safe space for the LGBTQIA+ community

Offers other features like journaling

Works with teens

Offers couples therapy

Easy access to online therapy

Accepts insurance

Offers psychiatric services

Cons

No video content

Doesn’t offer medication management services

Doesn’t accept insurance

Not designed for emergency situations

No free trial

Doesn’t offer a free trial

Live sessions may be too short

Text therapy might not work for some

How We Tested

When we review apps, we want to give our readers as much information as possible so that they can make the best decision for their needs. We rate each product in 4 categories: quality, effectiveness, price, and brand reputation. Take a look below to find out what each of these means.

Quality

Mental health is incredibly important, so if you’re looking for an app to improve it, you want to know that it is of sound quality. Both BetterHelp and Talkspace work with licensed therapists who are fully qualified in their fields. We believe both of these apps are of high quality.

Effectiveness

If you’re paying money for a health product, you want to be assured that it is actually going to be effective for your health. Research suggests that online therapy is just as effective as face-to-face therapy, which means you can rest assured that both these apps will improve your mental well-being.

Price

While these apps seem expensive, when compared to the cost of in-person therapy sessions, they’re actually quite affordable. The price of healthcare is incredibly important as we believe everyone should have access to good care. Both of these apps cost less than traditional therapy.

Brand reputation

A good brand reputation helps users to trust a product. Both Talkspace and BetterHelp have a good reputation in the health and wellness industry. Both only use qualified and licensed therapists and can be trusted to improve your mental health.

A Word From a Psychologist

Mental health is just as important as physical health, so taking care of it is a good idea. You can take care of your psychological health in many ways, including ensuring that you get enough exercise, getting out in nature for a morning walk, practicing meditation and mindfulness, and eating a good diet. However, sometimes, you need a little extra help.

Seeking therapy to improve your mental well-being is often stigmatized, but there is no shame in doing so. With the advent of online therapy apps, seeking therapy is easier than ever. There is even evidence to suggest that online therapy is just as effective as in-person therapy.

Therapy can help you find the causes of your issues as well as teach you strategies for coping, help you identify your triggers, and improve your overall mental well-being. There are many forms of therapy to choose from, so it is important to do some research to find the style that you feel will suit you best.

If you’re looking for a more affordable and convenient way to seek therapy, then taking a look at the many online therapy platforms available is a good idea!

Conclusion

Both BetterHelp and Talkspace are great therapy apps. They offer support and services to users and can cater to a number of conditions. However, we would recommend the Sensa app instead.

As a well-rounded mental health app, Sensa can support you in improving your mental well-being, teach you coping strategies, and create individualized plans for every single user.

HR_author_photo_Edibel
Written by
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.
Medically reviewed by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Share on
facebook twitter pinterest linkedin

0 Reviews

Leave a review

checked
Thank you for your comment!
We will review it as soon as possible.
HealthReporter

Advertisement
Sensa Health Sensa Health
company-logo