How Long Does BetterHelp Take to Match?

Written By

Saba Imran


Fact Checked

two people in a bright sunny lit therapy room

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Seeking online therapy, especially on platforms like BetterHelp, has become increasingly popular. 

But one question often pops up: “How long does it take for BetterHelp to match me with a therapist?” Knowing the answer can ease anxieties and set realistic expectations.

Understanding the Matching Process

BetterHelp uses an algorithm to connect you with a therapist based on several factors, including:

  • Location: Therapists must be licensed to practice in your state.
  • Availability: You’ll be matched with someone who has open slots for your preferred session times.
  • Specializations: Therapists have their areas of expertise, like anxiety or depression. You can choose someone based on your needs.
  • User Preferences: During signup, you’ll answer questions about your gender, age, religion, and cultural background. BetterHelp tries to find therapists who align with your preferences.

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4.5 (7,108+) FROM TRUSTPILOT

Fill out a brief questionnaire and get matched with an experienced therapist online in as little as 48 hours.

✓ Over 33K licensed professionals

✓ Financial aid available

✓ Subscriptions as low as $65/week, billed every four weeks

✓ Cancel plan or change therapist anytime

✓ 20% off your first month through Therapy Helpers

Average Waiting Time

Officially, provides a match timeframe of within 48 hours. However, several factors can influence your wait:

  • Therapist Availability: If therapists in your area with your preferred preferences are fully booked, the wait may lengthen.
  • Demand and Specialization: Less common specializations may face higher demand, leading to longer waits.
  • Location: In remote areas with fewer therapists, matching might take longer.

Table: Potential Influences on Waiting Time

FactorLikely Wait TimeExample
High Therapist Availability & Common Specialization< 48 hoursSeeking general stress management in a populated area
Moderate Availability & Less Common SpecializationWithin 48 hoursSeeking trauma therapy in a smaller city
Low Availability & Rare SpecializationAs little as 48 hoursSeeking eating disorder therapy in a rural area

Tips to Potentially Speed Up the Process:

  • Be detailed during signup: The more information you provide, the better the algorithm can match you.
  • Be flexible with preferences: Consider expanding your therapist’s age range or location slightly.
  • Use the “Browse Therapists” feature: If the initial match isn’t perfect, you can proactively search for another therapist.
person sitting in a living room comfortable with a laptop and therapist on screen

Waiting Wisely: Utilizing the Time

While matching takes time, BetterHelp offers plenty of resources to fill the wait productively:

  • Journaling: Track your thoughts and emotions before therapy begins.
  • Resource Library: Access articles, quizzes, and exercises on various mental health topics.
  • Community Forum: Connect with others facing similar challenges in a supportive setting.

Remember: If your situation requires immediate support, use emergency hotlines or local mental health resources.


  • Can I request a specific therapist? You can browse profiles and request a specific therapist, but they may or may not have availability.
  • What if I’m not happy with my match? You can request a new therapist for no additional charge.
  • How does therapy at BetterHelp work? Once matched, you can communicate with your therapist through video calls, phone calls, text messaging, and live chat.
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Does online therapy really work? (CBS News)

Finding the Right Fit

Ultimately, the wait for a BetterHelp therapist match is temporary. BetterHelp has been around for over a decade now and has got a great grasp on pairing members with ideal therapists for them.

By understanding the process, considering potential influencing factors, and utilizing available resources, you can navigate the wait productively and be well-prepared for your first therapy session.

Remember, finding the right therapist is key to a successful therapy journey, so be patient and trust the process.


Looking for more mental health tips? Make sure to follow our Mental Health Board on Pinterest!

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About the author

Saba Imran

Saba Imran

I'm passionate about medical research and writing. I earned my Master's degree in Microbiology because I love learning about tiny microbes and how they impact health. With over 6 years experience as a healthcare researcher and medical writer, I've published many times in international journals. Participating in research projects has given me in-depth knowledge to make complex topics easy to grasp. In my free time, I volunteer at the community science museum to get kids excited about science and discovery. My goal is to take difficult concepts and make them understandable through meticulous research, hopefully benefiting people across the globe. I believe clear science writing can empower us all. Social

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