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Online sex therapy is a type of talking therapy available to individuals, couples, and polyamorous partners. Therapists specializing in these areas can offer coping strategies and techniques. Here, we test and review our top picks.

A quick look at the best online sex therapy services

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), sexual health is integral to the overall health and well-being of an individual and those with whom they have a close, intimate relationship.

If a person is having difficulties in this area, they may wish to consider online sex therapy.

Sex therapists are qualified counselors or healthcare professionals who help people with sexual difficulties.

They can help individuals experiencing various challenges, such as a lack of desire, difficulty having orgasms, pain during sex, erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, or any other issue related to sex.

Sex therapy sessions usually involve talking therapy, during which a person will discuss their sexual experiences, feelings, and therapy goals.

Medical News Today looks at some of the following criteria when deciding on reputable and well-received services:

  • Health claims: MNT includes companies that make no questionable health claims.
  • Trust: MNT includes companies that operate with transparency in regard to their products, services, and leadership. Also, where relevant, chosen companies have certifications from reputable, third party organizations.
  • Business standards: MNT chooses companies that follow safe and ethical business and marketing practices.
  • Reputation: MNT highlights companies that have positive standings with the Better Business Bureau and neither warnings from governing bodies nor unresolved lawsuits.
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The following are our top picks for sex therapy services.

Disclaimer: Medical News Today testers may have received free products or services from the companies in this article. All opinions are their own.

Best for text therapy: Talkspace

  • Price: $69–$109 per week (access to psychiatric services costs more)
  • Specializes in: anyone in need of mental health support
  • Communication method: live video, video and audio messaging, phone call, and live online text chat
  • Accepts insurance: yes

Talkspace is an online therapy platform that offers a range of support options, including relationship and sex-related therapy. The sessions can be for individuals or couples.

Once a person registers, they can browse licensed therapist profiles to search for someone with the appropriate specialty in sex and relationships. People can also switch therapists at any time at no extra cost.

A person who registers as part of a couple can still have individual therapy sessions once treatment starts and upon a therapist’s recommendations. The sessions are available via video chat, messaging, or telephone.

This is a subscription service, with prices ranging from $69 to $109 per week. The cost depends on the service a person or couple chooses and whether they opt for an individual or couple’s membership.

Talkspace reportedly works with a variety of health insurance plans. A person can contact their health insurance provider or their employer’s human resources department for confirmation of coverage.

Pros

  • The company accepts insurance coverage.
  • It allows people to choose from three different plans.
  • Therapy sessions can take place via video, text, or telephone.
  • A person can message their therapist at any time of the day.
  • The company employs psychiatrists who can prescribe medications.

Cons

  • Video sessions are only available in certain plans.
  • Remote sessions may not suit people who are in a life threatening situation.
  • Trustpilot reviews are mostly negative.
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Best for couples: ReGain

  • Price: $65–$90 per week
  • Specializes in: couples seeking therapy
  • Communication method: live video, text messaging, phone call, and live online text chat
  • Accepts insurance: no

ReGain specializes in relationship therapy and claims to be the world’s largest couples therapy service. However, it also offers individual counseling. The service deals with a range of relationship issues, including intimacy and sex.

ReGain’s service is 100% online, and a person can choose whether they would prefer to use messaging, video, or phone calls. Individuals can also message their therapist at any time and arrange a live session whenever it suits them.

All therapists have licenses and accreditation in their fields and specialize in a range of topics. Once a person registers on the website, they can choose the area of their relationship they wish to discuss. Individuals may also select “improve sex and intimacy,” for which ReGain will assign them a suitable therapist.

The prices start from about $65 to $90 per week, depending on location, a person’s needs, and therapist availability. A person can cancel their membership at any time.

Pros

  • It is possible to sign up as a couple or an individual.
  • A person can message their therapist at any time of the day.
  • Sessions can take place by phone, video chat, or instant message.

Cons

  • The service matches people with therapists through an algorithm rather than allowing them to make their own selection.
  • There is an exclusive focus on relationship problems.
  • A person may be unable to claim back the costs through their insurance plan.
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Best for individuals: BetterHelp

  • Price: $65–$90 per week
  • Specializes in: anyone in need of mental health support
  • Communication method: live video call, phone call, and live online text chat
  • Accepts insurance: no

BetterHelp offers a wide range of licensed therapists, some of whom specialize in intimacy issues.

A person can message their assigned therapist at any time. Sessions can take place via live video call, phone call, or live chat. Weekly online group seminars are also available for individuals to attend if they wish.

The cost ranges from about $65 to $90, depending on location, therapist availability, and individual preference. A person can use the therapy service for as long as they need and cancel their membership at any time.

What our tester says

“I wanted to try online therapy as I’ve primarily only tried in-person therapy before. I wanted to see if consistent sessions with a virtual therapist helped me with my mental health and felt like an effective and sustainable option.

“It was very simple to register, and a lot quicker than I expected! I was matched with a therapist in under a day.

“While I didn’t need to switch therapists, it seemed like the process was relatively straightforward. My therapist also made it really clear that she could help me switch if I wanted to, and it was up to me.

“I think BetterHelp is a good fit for people who have busy or varied schedules and have a hard time fitting therapy into their week. Virtual one-hour sessions are easy to fit into a busy life, and the scheduling is flexible. In previous therapy experiences, sessions were held at the same time and day every week.

“BetterHelp lets you book in whatever available time and day works for you, so you can book at times that work for you. I think this would be good for people with busy work schedules, students, parents, etc.

“The only hiccup was related to the BetterHelp support desk. My therapist let me know that she’d be on holiday for two weeks, so I’d need to contact the support team to extend my membership for two weeks so I wouldn’t miss out on sessions.

“If you were paying for therapy monthly, I’d imagine this could be a bit of a headache. It seems like BetterHelp should have an option for the therapist to manage this instead of putting the onus onto the user – this could be particularly difficult for people who struggle with executive dysfunction, have depression or ADHD, etc.”

– Olivia, Medical News Today tester.

Learn more in our comprehensive Betterhelp review.

Pros

  • The company offers therapy sessions for individuals, couples, and teens.
  • The therapists can hold sessions through video chat.
  • A person can join group sessions if they wish to do so.

Cons

  • A person cannot use their health insurance to cover the costs.
  • No psychiatrists are available, so people cannot receive prescriptions.
  • Billing occurs regardless of whether a person has scheduled any sessions.
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Best for a holistic approach: Modern Intimacy

  • Price: varies by location and therapist experience
  • Specializes in: addiction, ethical non-monogamy, relationships, trauma, and more
  • Communication method: teletherapy or in-person
  • Accepts insurance: accepts reimbursement

Modern Intimacy states that it provides a holistic approach to therapy, focusing not just on the immediate issue that led to people using its service, but any other questions, preferences, sexual struggles, or pleasures.

This service has a wide range of specialties, including:

  • addiction and compulsive behaviors
  • enmeshment trauma
  • LGBTQIA+ affirmative therapy
  • sex, love, and porn addictions
  • alternative lifestyles
  • ethical non-monogamy
  • mood disorders
  • trauma therapy
  • betrayal trauma and infidelity
  • retroactive jealousy
  • body image and eating disorders
  • holistic living
  • sexual dysfunction
  • relationships

Modern Intimacy offers a free 30-minute consultation. After this, the cost will depend on a person’s location and the therapist’s experience.

People can choose between in-person and telehealth services. In-person sessions are only available in Los Angeles, San Fransisco, New York, Miami, Chicago, Denver, Minneapolis, Austin, and San Antonio.

Modern Intimacy also offers courses on various issues a person may encounter in relationships. People must pay for these courses, and many are several weeks long.

Pros

  • Offers therapists with various specialties, including ethical non-monogamy and LGBTQIA+ affirmation.
  • Offers a 30-minute free consultation.
  • People who live in certain cities can see therapists in-person.
  • Offers courses online.

Cons

  • In-person sessions are only available in limited locations.
  • People cannot choose their own therapist.
  • Modern Intimacy does not offer transparent pricing examples.
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The following table compares the services in this article.

PriceSpecializes inWays to communicate with a therapistAccepts insurance?
Talkspace$69–109 per weekanyone in need of mental health supportlive video
video and audio messaging
phone call
live online text chat
yes
ReGain$60–90 per weekcouples seeking therapylive video
text messaging
phone call
live online text chat
no
BetterHelp$60–90 per weekanyone in need of mental health supportlive video call
phone call
live online text chat
no
Modern Intimacyvaries by location and therapistLGBTQIA+, ethical non-monogamy, trauma, relationships, and moreteletherapy or in-personaccepts reimbursements

Our picks for the best online platforms offer similar services at comparable prices. The best online sex therapy service for a person may depend on their relationship status and personal identifiers, such as whether they identify as belonging to an LGBTQIA+ community and whether they have any partners. Some services specialize in specific focus areas or communities.

A person’s preferred means of communication with a therapist may also affect their decision. The services in this article offer a mix of live messaging, video calls, phone calls, and online group sessions.

Sexual difficulties may affect a person’s mental health and lead to conditions such as depression and anxiety. According to the American Sexual Health Association (ASHA), sex is an important part of a person’s physical and emotional health.

The ASHA also states that sexual health covers many areas, including:

  • pleasure
  • satisfaction
  • intimacy
  • communication

Once a person has found a sex therapist, they need to first decide whether they will attend sessions by themselves or with their partners, if applicable. The length of a session will depend on the individual’s needs.

Sex therapists know that some people may feel awkward talking about sex, so they should try to make their clients feel more comfortable. Sex therapists are likely to start the first session by asking questions about someone’s background, history, sex education, and any specific sexual concerns.

Sex therapists may also assign tasks, or homework, for people to do between sessions. The tasks are likely to vary from person to person but may include practicing communication and educating themselves on their and their partner’s anatomy.

It is important to note that sex therapy does not involve sexual activity or physical contact between the client and therapist. People need to also be aware that if they feel uncomfortable with any aspect of the therapy, they can discuss this with the therapist, change therapists, or report the therapist to their licensing board as appropriate.

A person can use directories that list local and licensed sex therapists. Examples include AASECT and SSTAR.

People can filter AASECT results by country or by state. The directory advises those currently residing in the United States to search by state.

Individuals can also search the SSTAR website by a therapist’s name or location. Each therapist lists their address, email, website, and areas of specialization.

A person can educate themselves on anatomy, sexual activity, and sexual health by themselves without speaking with a therapist. There are various free resources, including books, videos, and podcasts, that can provide sex education.

However, licensed sex therapists can help people get to the root of any concerns and provide tools to help them address sex in a healthier and more positive way.

Additionally, it is unnecessary for a person to bring their partner to a therapy session. People can attend sessions as an individual.

People wanting to speak about sex online with a qualified professional may wish to use services, like the ones in this article, or directories.

The American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT) and the Society for Sex Therapy & Research (SSTAR) provide listings of certified therapists.

People who cannot visit a sex therapist in-person can use online services. These may be more convenient, especially if one or more partners work longer hours, as many therapists offer non-traditional appointment times.

Other options include self-reflection apps that partners use together.

Talkspace offers couples counseling, which can include discussions around sex and sexual difficulties.

Sexual health is important for an individual’s or couple’s overall well-being. If a person has sexual difficulties, this could affect their mental health and their relationship with their partner or partners.

Online sex therapy, a type of talking therapy, is available to individuals and couples. People can discuss any sexual or relationship issues with a therapist typically specializing in these areas.

Many online therapy services involve a subscription fee, but a person can cancel this at any time.