Talkspace vs Lyra (A Detailed Comparison)

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Page last updated: 6/09/2022

This article will compare the features of Talkspace and Lyra. Both of these mental health platforms serve different needs and various populations, with Talkspace focusing exclusively on mental health care for individuals and their families and Lyra taking on mental health in the workplace.

Talkspace vs Lyra (A Detailed Comparison)
Talkspace vs Lyra (A Detailed Comparison)

In the following table, you will be able to get a better picture of the features that these two platforms offer for their users. You will also be able to understand the differences between Talkspacne and Lyra.

 Feature  Talkspace  Lyra
 Types of services  Therapy and Psychiatry Therapy and Psychiatry
 Pricing  Min 260 USD Min 75 USD per session
 Payment options   All major credit or debit cards, HSA, FSA All major credit cards or debit cards
 Insurance   Available Available
 Age group  13 years and above 15 years and above

Talkspace

Pros

  • Talkspace can be used from anywhere
  • It is very cost-effective
  • It offers therapy and psychiatry

Cons

  • Talkspace requires an internet connection
  • Live sessions are not available in all the plans
  • Online therapy may not be for everybody

Lyra

Pros

  • Lyra is free through EAPs
  • It offers therapy and medication
  • It provides self-care and self-help resources

Cons

  • Users are not guaranteed of quality of services
  • Lyra can be expensive without EAP and insurance
  • Users may not be comfortable with virtual therapy

About Talkspace

Talkspace was founded in 2012 as a couples counseling and group therapy platform by Roni and Oren Frank. The Franks themselves had faced numerous challenges when they sought therapy for their own needs. As they benefited greatly from couples therapy, they decided to create a platform through which mental health care is more accessible to those who seek it.

Talkspace vs Lyra (A Detailed Comparison)

Picture credit: Talkspace

Talkspace is focused solely on mental health and provides therapy services as well as psychiatry. The therapy is conducted through various formats like unlimited messaging, live chats, live audio sessions and even live video sessions. The platform aims to bring more convenience and comfort to the user through a wide variety of formats.

Insurance coverage is also available in Talkspace which can greatly reduce the costs of therapy. The insurance coverage is also eligible for the psychiatry services in the platform. In addition to individual therapy, Talkspace also provides couples therapy and has a feature for therapy for teenagers.

 

About Lyra

Lyra or Lyra Health was founded in 2015 by David Ebersman who is the former CFO of Facebook. Lyra was founded with the aim of bringing quick and easy access to mental health for everybody. Since then, Lyra has created a name for itself in behavioral health, particularly among organizations and employees.

Talkspace vs Lyra (A Detailed Comparison)

Picture credit: Lyra

Lyra not only provides therapy but also offers medication. In the platform, users can have access to many other useful resources such as mediation, guided visualization and even coaching. The platform also acts as a gateway to other mental wellness tools like Calm. All the activities and techniques that Lyra offers have been extensively researched and thus are highly scientific in nature.

As more and more organizations have realized the significance and importance of mental health in the workplace, the relevance of a platform like Lyra is also increasing. Many organizations like Uber and Pinterest use the services of Lyra for the emotional and mental well-being of their employees.

Best features of Talkspace

Talkspace has a wide range of features for anyone who is looking for mental health care online. The best features of this online therapy platform have been described elaborately in the following section.

Talkspace can be accessed from anywhere

The great thing about Talkspace is that it operates completely online. And thus, this platform can be accessed and used from anywhere as long as the user has a stable internet connection and a compatible device. This means that the user can avail therapy and mental health care from their homes, their workplaces or any other place as they deem fit.

It offers insurance coverage

Insurance coverage is a factor that many therapy-goers look forward to. However, therapists who offer insurance coverage in the US are a limited number, especially as this brings a lot of extra work for the mental health professional. Insurance coverage is made easy in Talkspace through a variety of in-network providers such as Optum, Cigna and Humana.

Talkspace vs Lyra (A Detailed Comparison)

Mental health care is made easy

The process of mental health care itself is made quite easy using Talkspace. In traditional mental health care settings, the user has to put in a lot of effort to come in contact with a licensed and certified mental health professional and may even have to wait for long periods of time. Talkspace simplifies all these steps and makes the process quite easy and effective.

Therapy is offered in various formats

Traditional therapy or in-person therapy banks on talking as the main form of communication between the therapist and the client. However, not everyone is comfortable with expression through speech and may not be able to articulate well in this mode. In Talkspace, the user can communicate with their therapist through live chats, live audio and live video.

It offers couples therapy

Couples therapy is another feature that is offered in Talkspace. Couples therapy is not only for those partners who are going through difficulties in their relationships, but can also be great for those who are planning on tying the knot. Couples therapy and family therapy is highly relevant today as the very norms and definitions of relationships are continuously being bent.

Teenagers can benefit as well

Teenagers between the ages of 13 years and 18 years can also benefit from Talkspace as it provides teens therapy. This form of therapy is particularly aimed at relieving the mental health issues that this particular age group faces on a day to day basis. The importance of this type of therapy is even more since the prevalence of maladaptive behaviors is high in teenagers.

Talkspace has a sleep program

Talkspace also offers a sleep program for eight weeks for those individuals who are facing troubles in falling asleep or staying asleep. Sleep is affected by many factors and requires professional health as lack of proper sleep can lead to physical health issues and even mental health problems.

It provides therapy as well as psychiatry

Therapy as well as psychiatry is provided in Talkspace. The psychiatry services in Talkspace are provided by licensed and accredited psychiatrists, which can help many who suffer from mental health conditions like severe depression and anxiety. However, laws and regulations prohibit the prescription of certain substances such as Xanax and Adderall.

It has many other resources

There are plenty of other resources in Talkspace in the form of blogs and articles that can help users outside their therapy sessions. This content covers mental health and mental illnesses and also various topics such as legal issues, career issues and even financial matters, which can increase the all-round quality of life.

It allows unlimited messaging

Users in Talkspace are also allowed unlimited messaging between them and their therapists. This unlimited messaging can be conducted through text messaging, audio messaging and video messaging. Messaging therapy itself can bring numerous benefits like increased accountability and healthy expression.

Best features of Lyra

Lyra offers many unique services since its approach to mental health is very different. Some of the best features of this platform have been described as follows.

Lyra works great for employees

Lyra is used mostly in the form of EAP services for the mental health of employees. And thus, companies like Uber and Pinterest have incorporated Lyra into their practices to ensure the top performance of their employees and their families. With its focus on the mental health of employees, Lyra has created several strategies that can help in organizational development.

It offers family care

Lyra not only offers services for the individual, but also focuses on the family as a unit. Thus, it has programs that cater to the mental health of children and even teenagers. Furthermore, there are programs for couples therapy and the family as a whole. The programs include several skillsets like communication and assertiveness that are essential for relationship building.

It focuses in self-care

Lyra additionally offers a program for mental self-care with many wonderful resources. These resources can be used by those who have been diagnosed with mental health conditions and also those who just want to improve their mental health status. These resources are of various types like guided meditations, exercises related to mental health and even video tutorials.

It provides coaching

There is also mental health coaching that is provided in Lyra. Mental health coaching can be a superb addition for those who are already in therapy and want to simply retrain their cognitive techniques and strategies. These coaching sessions are conducted by certified coaches through various modes that the user can choose according to their convenience.

Lyra is science driven

Lyra is completely science driven and evidence backed. And thus, users do not have to worry about the quality of the mental health care that they are receiving in Lyra. The Lyra website also shows many research studies and surveys that have been undertaken by the platform in order to reassure their users of the quality of care that they are providing.

 

It gives access to other apps

Through Lyra, users can access many other mental health related apps and platforms. The best of these partnerships is with Calm, an app that provides much needed mental health tools and exercises that can greatly help employees who are feeling stressed or burnt out at work. Calm offers plenty of tools that users can use for meditation, mindfulness and even sleep hygiene.

It offers various options

There are various options of sessions and therapy that can be chosen from in Lyra. The platform offers messaging sessions, video sessions and even has an option for in-person sessions that the user can pick and choose from according to their needs and preferences. Furthermore, the platform conducts its mental health care delivery through guides and video tutorials as well.

It provides progress tracking

As we discussed earlier, the approach of Lyra to mental health and mental health care is completely scientific. And thus, it takes the progress of its users and their mental health very seriously. This means that the mental health status of the user is continuously tracked through tools such as PHQ-9 and GAD-7.

Lyra offers several useful resources

The website of Lyra is filled with many free resources that can help users, their families and even employers. One example of such a resource is the ‘Returning to Work’ guide in which mental health and mental performance takes the spotlight. The Lyra blog is continually updated with articles and content related to various mental health topics that can benefit anyone and everyone.

Pricing of Talkspace

The price of a Talkspace subscription can vary depending on the location of the user and also the type of plan that they are choosing from. The platform offers three different plans with various features, namely the Unlimited Messaging Therapy Plus plan, the Unlimited Messaging Therapy Premium plan and the Unlimited Messaging Therapy Ultimate plan in order of the cost.

The average cost of Talkspace per user is $260 to $396 per month. This cost can increase or decrease depending on the length of the subscription. Generally, the lengthier the subscription, the lower the total costs. Talkspace also allows insurance coverage through various providers like Optum and Cigna, for both therapy as well as psychiatry services.

 

Pricing of Lyra

Lyra is mostly used as an EAP provider, and thus users of this platform who are employees working for a certain organization do not have to pay anything for the services of this platform. This not only includes therapy but also the other mental health care features of Lyra such as the self-care guides and the mental health coaching.

For those who do not have Lyra as an EAP provider, the sessions with the therapist can cost a minimum of $75 per session. With copay or insurance coverage, this cost can be reduced to as low as $0. The insurance coverage depends greatly on plan to plan. But mostly, the user will have to pay the full session fee until they meet their annual deductible until insurance kicks in.

Signing up for Talkspace

Signing up for Talkspace is pretty easy and very simple. To sign for the mental health care services in this platform, you can follow the steps described below:

  • You can go to the Talkspace homepage and click on ‘Get Started’
  • As an alternative, you can also download and install the Talkspace app which is available for iOS as well as Android devices
  • Once you have clicked on ‘Get Started’, you can then enter your email address
  • You will be asked to create a password for your account
  • You can then choose a username with which you can proceed to receiving your mental health care
  • Talkspace will immediately set up a private room for you, where you will be meeting a consultant mental health professional. This therapist will explain the process of Talkspace and also help you in matching with the right therapist or mental health professional for your needs.

Signing up for Lyra

The best way to sign up for Lyra is to use the website. Once you have accessed the Lyra website, you can go to the ‘Member Login’ section. This section will ask you about the company which is sponsoring your mental health care. You can enter your company’s name in this space. You will be then asked to enter your email id and the platform will guide you through the rest of the steps.

Tips for using Talkspace

While Talkspace can certainly be very easy, it has a large range of features that can be overwhelming for many users. Some tips that can help you in your search for high quality mental health care in this platform are:

  • Provide as many details as you can during the sign-up process. This is because the platform uses an algorithm to match you with the right mental health professional using the data that you feed it.
  • You can also choose your own therapist by going through the platform’s directories. While choosing your therapist, be sure to consider factors like age group, gender, orientation and even religious affiliation.
  • Use the messaging therapy to the best of your abilities as numerous users have found great benefit in this feature. Don’t be afraid of your choice of words or even the number of messages. Messaging your therapist can help you vent, express your feelings better and also improve accountability and ownership.
  • While having your live therapy sessions, remember to use a private space for this in your home. If you are not able to find such a space at home, you can always use a quiet park, a friend’s house or even a coffee shop if you are using the live chat feature.

Tips for using Lyra

Lyra also provides numerous features for its users. Some tips for new users of Lyra Health have been discussed as follows:

  • Lyra can be a great addition to anyone who is already undergoing therapy. For those who are in therapy at the moment, you can make great use of the mental exercises and guides that Lyra provides. These can be used outside of your therapy sessions so make sure to allot a small amount of time every day just for this.
  • Lyra also provides self-care tools like guided meditation and mindfulness. These can be great for those who have mental health conditions and even those who are simply seeking to uplift their mental health status. To make the best use out of these, be sure you are practicing them regularly for at least 2 -3 weeks to see a positive effect in your life.
  • If you are someone who has a mental health condition or has a family member who has been recently diagnosed with a mental illness, you can make use of the family therapy that Lyra provides. This can be useful as the therapist trains the family in communication exercises and coping strategies that can help the individual with their mental illness.
  • Be sure to check out the Lyra blog often as the website puts out new and useful content often. These can be useful for you or maybe even for someone else who is struggling with their mental health.

Personal Experiences in Talkspace

Talkspace provides a very useful platform which can act as a one-stop shop for all needs related to mental health care. The users of this platform have had mostly good things to say, such as:

  • The waiting period to be matched with a mental health professional is pretty less in Talkspace. The sign up process is also very simple and asked just about the right questions for the user to be matched with the right therapist.
  • At the same time, some users have felt that the algorithm that Talkspace uses needs to be improved as the matching process is not always very successful. However, the platform gives the user freedom to choose their own therapist from its directory.
  • Most users have also felt that the user interface of the platform is extremely simple. Thus, even if the person is experiencing a lot of stress and frustration they are able to swiftly navigate the mental health care services.
  • The users of Talkspace have additionally loved the anonymity and privacy features that the platform offers. Users can use the mental health care services using a nickname or a username and thus can protect their identities.

Personal Experiences in Lyra

Those who have used Lyra have a lot to say about this mental health platform. A few of their experiences have been summarized below:

  • The users of this platform have experienced a very short wait time before they have had their first appointments. This is highly in-contrast to traditional mental health care settings where users may need to wait for months together before they are assigned a mental health professional.
  • Users have also enjoyed the different tools that Lyra provides like meditation, visualization and even mental health coaching. These tools have especially helped those who are in therapy by giving them a space to be trained in various coping strategies.
  • Lyra users have additionally found the progress tracking tools that the platform provides to be positive for their mental health as they can clearly see the improvements in their psyche.
  • Organizations who use Lyra as an EAP service have found that most of their employees have increased their productivity levels after using the platform and have also reduced their other health expenses.

Conclusion

Talkspace and Lyra are focused on different sets of populations. While Talkspace is aimed at individual therapy, Lyra is directed towards employee wellness. However, both these platforms are doing their bit towards making mental health more accessible and easily affordable through various means.

Talkspace can be useful for anyone who is seeking individual therapy sessions online. This platform not only offers individual therapy but also provides couples therapy and teens therapy. All the plans in Talkspace are eligible for insurance coverage and thus quite cost-effective. Talkspace offers therapy as well as psychiatry services for medications and drugs.

Lyra is aimed at employee wellness as well as work performance. This platform is mostly used as an EAP service and thus has features that busy employees and their families will love. This platform can be used by those who have been diagnosed with mental health conditions as well as those who have not due to the wide array of services and programs offered.

BetterHelp: A Better Alternative

For those users who are looking for cost-effective therapy options with a wide variety of formats, we would highly recommend BetterHelp. This platform offers individual therapy, couples therapy and even teens therapy. There are even group therapy sessions that are available on the platform which are conducted about once a week.

Frequently asked questions:

Does Lyra have a Psychiatrist?

Yes, Lyra has psychiatrists and even other types of mental health professionals. These psychiatrists can provide diagnoses as well as prescriptions of medications or drugs for the treatment of mental health conditions.

What companies use Lyra?

Lyra is used by companies such as Uber, Pinterest and eBay to deliver mental health care for their employees as well as their families.

Does Lyra offer coaching?

Yes, Lyra offers mental health coaching through which individuals can learn various coping strategies and cognitive techniques for the management of their mental health conditions. This coaching can also be fantastic for someone who is simply trying to improve their mental health status.

 

Can I choose my therapist on Talkspace?

Yes, you can choose your own therapist in Talkspace. Talkspace uses AI to match users with suitable mental health professionals but also allows the user to choose their therapists by going through the therapist directory in the website.

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Citations

https://www.fiercehealthcare.com/tech/mental-health-startup-lyra-health-now-worth-4-6b-latest-megaround

https://www.getapp.com/hr-employee-management-software/a/lyra-health/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talkspace

https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/talkspace

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/08/07/technology/talkspace.html

https://benefits.baesystems.com/document/45

https://carruth.wvu.edu/resources/talkspace

https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/lyra-health

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/lyra-health-completes-200m-funding-round-to-transform-mental-health-care-globally-301311169.html

https://www.emarketer.com/content/lyra-health-scores-235m-new-acquisition-but-it-s-not-only-one-after-spot-employers-mental-health-benefits

https://www.bloomberg.com/profile/company/1292691D:US