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There is a high demand for affordable services designed to help those who need help with their state of mind. After all, traditional therapy isn’t cheap, and sometimes it can be overkill for specific problems people can go through. iPrevail takes a different approach to mental health that is interactive.
iPrevail is a decent service overall for those looking for affordable counseling. However, it would be best if you went into the service knowing that you will likely be talking to volunteers, which can be a hit or miss. If you need professional help, this isn’t going to be your best option.
In this review, we will be talking about what you need to know about iPrevail before subscribing. We encourage you to read on to learn about both the good and the bad parts of this unique service.
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Is iPrevail Safe? How Does It Work?
The service is designed to be an alternative to traditional therapy while being significantly cheaper. The idea behind it is you have a community of people helping each other out with rewards to incentivize both the coaches and the clients to interact and work out problems.
The idea itself is quite good. After taking a personal assessment, you are given either one or multiple options on what programs you’d like to take.
These programs range from interactive lessons to behavioral tools; additionally, you can track your progress, which provides an incentive to keep going. We particularly like the last part because it becomes a game of sorts where doing the lessons is less of a chore and more of a way to strive for completion while bettering your mental health.
iPrevail also has a rewards system where you’ll build up points that you can use to cash out for a gift card (for premium members) after making so much progress and completing programs.
Programs aren’t all the service offers; however, iPrevail also has coaches that you can talk to 24/7. Your coach will be someone to help you stick to your goals and encourage you to keep pressing on if you are starting to give up. They’ll also act as someone to give you advice when you need it and direct you on the right path.
Overall, iPrevail is a good idea in concept. They aim to provide real structure for those who need someone to talk to and work on their life and mental health. But as you likely know, just because things intend to go well doesn’t always mean that it will. In contrast, the service can work for many people; who you have paired with makes all the difference.
iPrevail as a Therapy Alternative
As we previously mentioned, iPrevail is an alternative for therapy that aims to be more affordable and more accessible. It also has the benefit of having people talk to at all times if you need someone for support.
There are two sides to iPrevail, one where you talk to coaches and one where you talk to licensed therapists.
We have to stress here that coaches are not licensed counselors as you’d find on competing services that claim to be legitimate therapy services. Coaches volunteer their time to help out people and also earn rewards just like “clients.” In theory, anyone can sign up to be a coach, where things can start getting dicey.
But let’s back up for a second, there are tons of people on the internet who want to lend a helping hand to strangers with no compensation back except maybe to make a new friend.
There are entire communities outside iPrevail dedicated to providing an internet shoulder to lean on, such as specific subreddits and forums. Generally, this means that you’ll find somebody willing to understand you, but it can also be a wild card on who you will be talking to.
iPrevail is essentially those communities, except the people you are seeking out have completed a short training program before they begin coaching others. This training program consists of teaching coaches how to support and understand others while giving positive, useful advice.
There’s also a rewards program, as we mentioned, that provides an incentive for coaches to “work.” Some coaches may see it as an alternative to something like Swagbucks, which has users doing tasks to earn points they can use to cash out for gift cards. Coaches will work with people suffering a variety of problems:
- Eating Disorders
- Grief Support
- Panic attacks
- Stress Relief
Do note that iPrevail is not a service for those with suicidal thoughts or other extreme mental health examples. Those who need help on that level should seek other mental support methods that are for such things.
There are three different coaches’ levels, and they will also have differing levels of experience on the platform.
- Level 1. Getting into the coaching program isn’t too hard to get into as long as you are paying attention to your training and understanding what you should be doing. From there, you set your schedule.
- Level 2. Level 2 coaches go through additional training and help with more complex problems that people are going through. They also can help users go through introductory programs.
- Level 3. These coaches have completed the highest level of certification in programs from the Veteran Health Administration. iPrevail claims that level 3 coaches have some background in psychology or social work. Users who are part of the premium membership are assigned to these elite coaches.
It sounds like a job, but to reiterate, these are volunteers. Sometimes coaches are students pursuing counseling, and they’d like to sharpen their skills. Other times, it is someone who has been on the fence’s user side and would like to give back and help others.
Because coaches are usually everyday people, you might not get the help you expect. Some users have reported having not-so-great experiences with certain coaches, such as running into people with strong biases, pushing religious beliefs, and offering unsavory advice, all of which are things you do not do in therapy.
This means that for some users, iPrevail is not an effective way to better themselves. It can be damaging, depending on how seriously you take the bad apples. This is why iPrevail is not a good service for extreme mental health problems, and it is more like something you participate in to have someone to speak to about your concerns.
It is true coaches have to run through a training program, but they are still your average joe in most cases and haven’t gone through the years of school and training to be a licensed psychologist.
iPrevail is free if you’d like to chat with coaches, but if you would like to talk to a licensed therapist, the service offers this at a surprisingly low price.
iPrevail doesn’t make it super apparent that they offer online therapy. Their focus is more on coaching and lessons. Essentially they are a community based mental health support service first and foremost.
Licensed therapists can sign up as contractors and earn revenue doing online therapy sessions. How do you know they are the real deal? They are required to find proof that they are licensed in at least one state and have malpractice insurance.
Therapists get clients by either being selected by users from a list or are matched by iPrevail. For users to have access to therapy, they must have a subscription, and it’s quite a good deal for what is being offered. The treatment quality will also be dependent on the therapist, but you are more likely to get the help you need than with a counselor.
This is more of a side hustle for a therapist rather than a replacement for practice. It’s a good way for them to stay sharp and have extra revenue.
We still recommend seeking focused online therapy services if you are dealing with severe problems, but for what you are paying, having access to psychologists isn’t bad at all.
How Much Does iPrevail Cost?
iPrevail undercuts other therapy services at only $10 per month. Contrast this with services like BetterHelp and TalkSpace that can cost $50 -$100 per week, and it becomes apparent at how cost-effective the service is.
Here is what this $10 gets you every month directly from the website:
- A private one-on-one chat with a Prevail Coach
- Engage with others who have been through similar experiences in supportive communities
- Start Clinically-proven online therapy, personalized to fit your life
- iPrevail rewards you more than $10 on Amazon for completing clinically-proven programs
You might be wondering how the service is so cheap if they are offering online therapy. It comes back to the fact that the therapists on the platform are doing it as side income rather than a full-time job, as we previously stated.
TalkSpace and BetterHelp are viable solutions for licensed psychologists to earn a living from home, and thus they can devote their full time and energy to their clients as they would if they saw people in person.
This means that the quality of the therapy on iPrevail may not be as good as more expensive options. This is why we said we couldn’t recommend the service for people with severe problems – those who are in a dark time in their lives need the full attention of a professional. Plus, you’ll build a healthy client/therapist relationship that is important for truly effective therapy.
Who Should and Shouldn’t Use iPrevail?
Putting everything we have talked about together, it becomes apparent that iPrevail is more of a simple mental health service. There’s nothing wrong with this as not everyone needs to see a $90 an appointment therapist if they have things they need to get off their chest and receive comfort.
People who iPrevail might be suited for are:
- People who need to talk: You can also use iPrevail if you feel lonely and need someone to talk to, there are many users on the platform who are looking for human interaction, and it is undoubtedly a much better idea to use iPrevail for this purpose rather than something like Omegle.
- People seeking group chat: Some people might find it more useful to have multiple people to talk to at once. People in a group can share their experiences and support each other, which can be an effective coping tactic.
- People who need support on top of therapy: Therapy sessions are generally one hour, once per week, which might not be enough for some people. Having people available to talk to on a smartphone or computer is very handy and can help with the gap between therapy sessions. In addition to iPrevail, we recommend checking out Know Who You Are by Courtney Martin.
- People who can’t spend a lot of money: iPrevail is designed for those who can’t or don’t want to spend the amount of money therapy typically requires. With that said, anyone in a crisis or has a diagnosis that affects their life in a significant way should try to seek a professional at a price they can afford.
Who should seek mental help elsewhere are:
- People who are wanting to make friends. iPrevail is excellent for just chatting about what is on your mind, but the service isn’t designed for making long-lasting online relationships. There are communities designed for this very purpose that will suit you. There are even services for making friends in person!
- People who need professional help. Throughout this, we have mentioned that iPrevail is not something to use if you genuinely need professional care to help solve what you are going through. The nature of iPrevail can make things even worse.
- People who need unbiased support the first time. Counseling is supposed to be a time of non-judgment. It’s easy for the average person to slip in their personal beliefs and opinions on who you are rather than addressing the problem at hand. Unfortunately, there have been signs of this happening on iPrevail, according to some users. If you need real support now rather than trial and error, we can’t say this is the best option.
What Other Options Should You Consider?
If you are here, you are likely seeking alternatives to more affordable therapy and perhaps more casual. Luckily, there are other places you can consider before deciding what is best for your needs.
This is perhaps the closest direct rival to iPrevail – it is similar but different and is significantly more popular.
For starters, 7 Cups is entirely free to use, depending on how you are using it. With the free version, you will be speaking with an Active Listener who is a volunteer dedicated to helping others, much like iPrevail.
Overall, it seems that users, in general, have a positive experience speaking with Active Listeners. There are so many people using the website/app, thus a larger pool of user feedback, but it seems to provide a more consistent experience than iPrevail overall.
Just going by simple statistics, we would say you are more likely to come across the help you seek due to the number of Active Listeners on the platform. However, you can still run into bad experiences that can ruin your mood even more. For platforms like 7 Cups and iPrevail, you’ll need to be able to shrug and move to a different person if things go south.
You can also read mental health advice via published articles on the platform. These are quite helpful and written by people who have a great understanding of the topics at hand.
Finally, 7 Cups offers a paid therapy service for $150, which is significantly more money than iPrevail, but the support quality is quite good. How it works is you message your therapist with what is on your mind, and they will reply to you once or twice a day.
This way, there is no worry about bothering them at inappropriate times as they will respond when it is time to do so. It also makes it convenient for you to get your thoughts out whenever you please.
For those who need a real-time one on one session, this isn’t going to be the best option, but it is more affordable than some other online therapy solutions. You’ll still get the professional help you need if you don’t mind the exchanges being more akin to a private message or email rather than an instant message.
7 Cups is for:
- People who need someone to talk to about their problems
- People who want free counseling
- People who want affordable but quality online therapy
- People who want to group chat
Overall, 7 Cups is a stable platform, and we recommend at least giving it a try if it sounds interesting. Perhaps you can try both iPrevail and 7 Cups and see which one you prefer before dedicating your full attention to either platform.
You can find a community for anything on Reddit, including people willing to dedicate their time to help other people feel better. There are multiple subreddits for the purpose, but we wanted to focus on r/KindVoice because we think this is what many people are looking for.
R/KindVoice is a community where you post a thread regarding what you are going through. From there, you’ll get responses and/or direct messages to chat. It’s a healthy community, and it eliminates a lot of rotten eggs due to having moderation in place to keep unsavory folks away.
Reddit is entirely free, and so it doesn’t hurt to try! We think you might be pleasantly surprised.
r/KindVoice is for:
- People who need someone to talk to about their problems
- People who want immediate, anonymous comforting
- People who want to make an online friend
Suppose you seek traditional online therapy in the comfort of your own home. In that case, TalkSpace is the leading online therapy service, and it’s hard to talk about online mental health services without bringing them into the picture.
Unlike iPrevail and 7 Cups, TalkSpace is only a platform for therapists and clients. But how does it work?
Rates start at $260 a month and what is offered in this starting package is unlimited text, video, and audio messaging. It works similarly to 7 Cups’ therapy service, where you can say what is on your mind, and your therapist will respond later. The real difference here is the added audio and video messaging options, which can be great for people who find that text-only isn’t sufficient.
According to therapists who have worked with Talkspace, the company demands a lot from them from a quality standpoint, and so you are very likely to get the help you need. Higher tiers also include a live session, but it is only for 30 minutes, so keep that in mind.
If you have insurance, you might be able to get coverage. What’s great about this is that since many in-person therapists don’t accept insurance, having a large online platform convenient for people across America.
TalkSpace is for:
- People who need professional therapy online
- People who find their local therapy options too expensive
- People who don’t have time to schedule therapy sessions
Betterhelp is very similar to TalkSpace and is a direct competitor.
According to BetterHelp themselves, the cost will range between $60 to $80 per week. This includes unlimited live sessions, and so if that is your priority, BetterHelp will be the superior option over TalkSpace.
Do note that you are less likely to have insurance coverage with BetterHelp as they haven’t partnered with any providers at this time.
Overall, our opinions are the same with BetterHelp as they are with TalkSpace; both are great platforms for seeking convenient online therapy.
BetterHelp is for:
- People who want to live video therapy online
- People who don’t want to travel to a clinic
- People who don’t have time to schedule therapy sessions
Online Mental Help vs. In-Person Mental Help
There has been a debate for a while now whether online therapy is as effective as in-person therapy. There are two sides to the coin here, so we will be doing our best to address any concerns.
The case for in-person therapy is a solid one. You get to communicate with your therapist for an hour while being in the same room. Additionally, any distractions from home are eliminated, making the environment feel like a genuinely safe space from the outside world.
Next, your therapist being in the same room is more likely to produce better results overall. While online therapy is incredibly convenient, having messages spaced out creates a bit of a disconnect. Some find and leave the potential for copy-paste responses that don’t mean anything.
Some people also feel more comfortable talking in person than through a live video session, which is understandable as camera shyness is real.
Unfortunately, the cost is the biggest drawback with in-person therapy overall, and it is what prevents many people from receiving the help they need. Many therapists don’t take insurance for starters due to how time-consuming it is for an individual psychologist to deal with paperwork and calls, which is the time taken away from sessions they could be doing, a.k.a. loss of revenue.
The average price for a therapy session in the USA is approximately $90, only for an hour. If you are returning every week, that is a hefty amount of money leaving your pockets per month. Of course, you can get better prices by seeing if you can see a therapist who uses sliding scale payment, but overall, depending on your needs, that $90 for an hour isn’t enough and costs too much.
People need varying degrees of help when it comes to therapy. Some people are going through severe problems, and messaging a therapist daily to get 1-2 replies a day isn’t enough, while for another person is perfect for their needs.
Online Mental Help
The most significant cases for online therapy would be both cost and convenience. You don’t have to commute to an office, you don’t have to worry about being “late” (except for missing a live session), and you have more time to collect your thoughts rather than being pressured to spill as much as you can within a specific time limit.
Furthermore, having the option to reach out to a community ensures that practically anyone can receive some level of comforting for no cost to them. If you feel lonely one night, you can fire up 7 Cups, iPrevail, Reddit, etc. and begin chatting with someone almost immediately.
What generally stops online mental help from being king is that it may not be as satisfying as in-person therapy, plus you might have technical issues that can ruin an ongoing live session,
Overall, we believe both online and in-person therapy are equally crucial because neither is a one size fits all scenario. We included a video below that explains when online help is appropriate vs. when it isn’t:
iPrevail is a satisfactory service for those who understand what it is: a community helping each other out through difficult times. It is not a complete replacement for professional therapy, but for some people, it is precisely what they need at that moment.
- Psychology Today: Therapy
- Counselor-License: Becoming a Licensed Professional Counselor
- MayoClinic: Are You Thinking About Suicide? How to Stay Safe and Find Treatment
- iPrevail: Online Therapy Jobs
- The Globe and Mail: Child Protection Organizations Seeing Uptick in Predators
- Talkspace: 25 Signs of a Bad Therapist: You Deserve Better
- Psychology Today: 10 Reasons Why People Refuse to Talk to Therapists