FAQs about how to find a mental health counselor in California
How do I find a mental health counselor in California?
Find a mental health counselor near you in California on Zencare. Narrow your search by using filters like insurance, therapy budget specialty, and provider identity. Mental health professionals on Zencare are vetted for their extensive experience treating individual adults, children and adolescents, as well as couples and families. Explore each potential mental health counselor profile to learn more about their specialties, and watch an introductory video to get a sense of their personality. Book a free initial call to find the right mental health counselor for you!
Does insurance cover therapy in California?
Yes, most California health insurance carriers provide mental health benefits that cover therapy. However, the exact amount of coverage will vary based on the plan details and whether the selected provider is in-network or out-of-network with your insurance. If the mental health counselor is in-network with your insurance, you’ll pay only a copay at each session after meeting your annual deductible. If the mental health counselor is out-of-network with your insurance, you may still be able to receive reimbursement after paying the fee at the time of therapy session. If you have a PPO or POS insurance plan, you can likely receive some reimbursement when you see a mental health counselor out-of-network in California. If you have an HMO, EPO, or Medicaid/Medicare plan, you likely cannot receive reimbursement, and would be responsible for the full out-of-network session fee. Note that services designed to treat topics which are not diagnosed mental health conditions, such as couples counseling and life coaching, are not typically covered by health insurance. The potential mental health provider must also be a licensed therapist in your state for the insurance company to cover services.
How do I find an affordable mental health counselor in California?
Many mental health counselors offer a sliding scale, or a range of session fees based on financial need to clients who would not otherwise be able to afford typical therapy rates in California. If you are struggling to pay for therapy, consider asking for a sliding scale, looking for an in-network mental health counselor, or seeking services through a local agency, college counseling center, or hospital.
How can I make an appointment with a mental health counselor in California?
Start your search for an appointment with a mental health counselor in California on Zencare. Many mental health professionals located in California require clients to have an introductory call before booking a full appointment online. In this free call, the prospective mental health counselor will ask about your goals for treatment, and make sure that their skills, specialized training, and scope of private practice are a match for your mental health issues. At the same time, you should assess if you feel comfortable talking with the mental health counselor, as studies show that the most important determinant of successful therapy is the relationship between therapist and client. After an initial call, you’ll typically be given the option to book an appointment with the mental health counselor, or continue your search if it’s not a good fit. At the initial session, you’ll likely discuss the therapeutic process and determine goals for your personal growth. Common therapy goals include learning effective coping strategies to deal with negative feelings, increasing self-awareness, and gaining a deeper understanding and insight into relationship patterns.
How can I find a mental health counselor in California who sees clients after hours?
Find a mental health counselor who sees clients after hours on Zencare. Many mental health counselors in California offer appointments outside of traditional business hours. Simply filter by Office Hours under More Filters to choose the time of day that works best for you, whether that be early morning before work, in the evenings, or even over the weekend. After hours sessions are a good option for busy individuals, couples, and families dealing with hectic schedules and who need a flexible option for their mental health care.
How do I find a mental health counselor in California who offers in-person sessions?
Find a mental health counselor who offers in-person sessions on Zencare. Many mental health counselors in California have resumed offering in-person sessions; you can filter by “In-Person” to find a provider who is accepting new clients for in-office sessions. You can also search by map to find providers in California near you. While some clients prefer in-person sessions because they offer a safe, neutral ground for the session to take place, for the widest range of mental health counselor options, consider expanding your search to also include providers licensed in your state who offer telehealth, or therapy sessions via remote video call.
How do I find a mental health counselor in California who offers online sessions?
Find a mental health counselor who offers online sessions on Zencare. Most mental health counselors in California continue to offer appointments online; you can filter by “Online” to find a provider who is accepting new clients for teletherapy sessions. In order to see a mental health counselor, they must be licensed to provide online sessions to clients living in your state. Online therapy is different from text therapy, or asynchronous therapy; online therapy offers the same consistent relationship with a local California mental health counselor that an in-person session would, with sessions taking place via phone or a video sessions through a secure teletherapy platform. Online therapy sessions are a convenient way to find a mental health counselor near California without leaving the comfort of your home or office.
Where can I get mental health therapy in California?
Start your search for mental health therapy in California on Zencare. Many mental health counselors are quality-vetted for excellence in clinical care. When you’re struggling with your mental health, it might be time to seek professional support in the form of counseling services, couples therapy, or psychiatric medication management. There are a wide range of private practice mental health counselors to choose from in California; consider narrowing your search by criteria like insurance carrier, therapy budget, specialty, or provider identity to find a great fit!
How can I start therapy in California?
Start your search for a great mental health counselor in California on Zencare. First, consider any logistic limitations, like how far you are willing to travel outside of California or if you are open to online sessions with a local provider. Also consider how much your therapy budget is, and when you are available for therapy. Then, make a list of priorities for your ideal mental health counselor: do they match your identity, or have expertise in a specific area like anxiety or depression? There is no one reason to start therapy; many individuals in California go see a therapist when they need help to move forward through a difficult time, cope with symptoms of a mental illness such as a mood disorder, navigate life transitions, process relationship difficulties or improve their behavioral health. Use your priorities to filter on Zencare by insurance, speciality, and availability. Look through a few provider profiles to find the mental health counselor you might click with, watch their introductory videos, and book a free call to find a great personal fit!
What kinds of mental health providers are available in California?
There are many different kinds of mental health providers available in California, including psychologists, clinical social workers, and mental health counselors. As long as the provider is licensed in your state, the factor that matters most to therapy outcomes is the therapeutic alliance, or the relationship you build with your therapist. Common types of therapy provided in California include cognitive therapies, like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), and insight-oriented therapies like psychodynamic therapy. Other providers offer a blend of techniques for a more interpersonal, holistic approach. Some mental health therapists in California also offer specialized treatment services, like couples therapy, premarital counseling, and family therapy. While most California providers are qualified to treat general challenges, like depression, anxiety disorders, trauma, relationship difficulties, and low self-esteem, for concerns such as substance abuse, personality disorders, and eating disorders, consider seeking expert care. Together with your mental health counselor, you’ll build a treatment plan that addresses your reasons for seeking therapy and monitor progress toward your wellness goals and overall well being.
How does paying for therapy work in California?
There are several options for paying for therapy in California. For many people, the most affordable way to seek mental health services is to look for a provider who is in-network with your insurance. Due to high demand and low availability, in-network providers often have long waitlists; to widen your options and start therapy sooner, you might also consider looking for an out-of-network provider. When you see an out-of-network mental health counselor in California, you can ask for a sliding scale if you are unable to afford their typical session fees, or seek reimbursement from your insurance company if you have a PPO or POS plan. For clients who have an insurance plan with a high deductible and low medical costs, therapy costs are often comparable when you see a mental health counselor in- or out-of-network. While paying for therapy can be a substantial investment, it’s also a great way to improve relationships, boost self-esteem, address symptoms of mental illness, and ultimately live a happier, more self-directed life.