With a record number of individuals experiencing mental health problems like depression, there is a greater need than ever for effective medical care. More than half of individuals in the United States who suffer from a mental health condition do not get help for it. The CDC reports a sharp increase in the adolescent suicide rate, which is more proof of a severe shortage of care among this population. Unfortunately, adolescents may be the most vulnerable because they often don't have the means to afford therapy. Trying to deal with mental health if you can't afford therapy is really tough. However, always remember that everyone has the power to overcome this on their own as well.
6 Ways to Deal with Mental Health if You Can't Afford Therapy
But why individuals aren't receiving the assistance they need? Well, it's not a simple answer. Campaigns like Mental Health Awareness Month strive to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness. Still, the truth remains that mental health has not been given the same level of attention as physical health by our healthcare system. For example, there is no such thing as an annual mental health checkup covered by insurance, and therapists who take insurance sometimes have to put in twice as much effort simply to be compensated. Unfortunately, not everyone has a low-stress job, so many people are struggling with anxiety and depression. However, there are other ways to deal with mental health if you can't afford therapy.
1. Check with your insurance company
In the event that you receive coverage via your job, the Health Insurance Marketplace, or Medicaid, you will have access to the following basic mental health services:
However, not every therapist will work with your insurance. If the therapist accepts your insurance, you may go ahead and schedule an appointment with them. Copayments and coinsurance should be covered by your Health Savings Account (HSA) if you have a high-deductible health insurance plan.
2. Talk to a psychologist in training
Think about visiting a clinic where aspiring psychologists get hands-on experience. Most of these clinics may be found on school campuses that provide programs leading to certification as therapists. Your therapist may still be a student, but they will be working under the supervision of a licensed professional at all times
Clients shouldn't be reluctant to work with an intern or trainee. Interns have a lot of supervision, are highly industrious, and are enthusiastic about assisting customers. Interns have fresh and up-to-date educational training and can sometimes be seen for a very cheap fee. You can finally stop worrying about money. Student therapists are oftentimes more eager to help out than the already established ones.
3. Look into community mental health centers
Community centers for mental health care are another excellent option. They have a deeper understanding of the neighborhood challenges and cultural perspectives on mental health that they serve. They help those struggling with mental health issues and may help lessen the social stigma associated with such conditions. You can learn some healthy practices from these community centers and get the benefits of mental health counseling. Additionally, they have been demonstrated to aid in lowering suicide rates. You can find these across the country.
4. Become a member of a local or online support groups
There are a lot of free support groups, trauma support groups, and addiction recovery support groups available via nonprofits, volunteers, and local organizations. For instance, a wide variety of support groups are available to those dealing with substance use disorder, mental disorders, and domestic violence. In addition to local support groups, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) also provides free peer-led support groups for people with mental illness in every major city.
5. Self-help literature, meditation apps, and podcasts
You may do various things under your own steam that will contribute to your emotional and physical well-being. Look for books on self-improvement at your local library or budget bookstore. For anyone struggling with mental health concerns like sadness, anxiety, or loss, there are plenty of books that may help. If you like reading, this is a great way to learn more about your condition and try to implement some advice.
Free smartphone applications may help with mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Similarly, there are podcasts, online blogs, and forums that focus on mental health and healing. These aids are not a replacement for conventional treatment, but they may be useful when combined.
6. If you are religious, try speaking with a member of your church
People seeking mental health treatment may greatly benefit from assistance based on faith and religion. You may expect to be treated with kindness and compassion, and the assistance you get will be consistent with your morals and beliefs. Get in touch with other members of your church or search online for local support groups. Having friends and family there for you is a huge help, and having ties to your neighborhood really helps a lot. Even if their primary purpose is not to improve mental health, consistent social interactions, such as those seen in religious organizations or social clubs, may have a profound effect. Having your people around to support you is one of the best ways to deal with mental health if you can't afford therapy.
Fiona Jenkins is an aspiring journalist who likes to focus on important causes that can make an impact on our community.