Alcohol & Health
Treatment
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Updated on December 22, 2022
6 min read

 Alcohol Therapy Online

If you’re struggling with an alcohol use disorder (AUD), you may need support to help you get sober. An AUD is defined as unhealthy alcohol use, such as binge drinking and alcoholism. 

Binge drinking is having five or more drinks on occasion for men or four or more drinks for women.1 This type of drinking is less severe than alcoholism. However, it can lead to more serious AUDs. 

Alcoholism is the inability to control your drinking due to emotional and physical dependence. An alcoholic will have severe cravings and withdrawal symptoms when they don’t drink. Most people need help and support to quit, including counseling, professional detox, and rehab.

There are many different routes you can take to treat an AUD. Luckily, not all treatments require you to go into a facility full-time. If you’re looking for help with an AUD, you can do it from the comfort of your home. Alcohol therapy online is available and can help you reach sobriety.

Where Can I Find Online Therapy for Alcohol Abuse?

If you want alcohol therapy online, you must find a trusted and professional therapist. Many therapists offer remote counseling, often mentioned on their website or online portfolio. 

If your insurance covers your alcohol therapy, consider checking their website. Most insurance companies provide a list of trusted therapists within your network. From there, you must reach out to the therapist to get on their schedule.

There are also plenty of websites with a catalog of convenient and affordable online therapists who can help. Websites like BetterHelp and Talkspace help connect you to the right professional for your needs. 

These services cost a monthly fee. The cost depends on your insurance and financial situation. 

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How Does Virtual Therapy Work?

Starting virtual therapy can seem intimidating if you’ve never done it before. While some people like to do therapy in person, others prefer online therapy. This could be due to living location, financial stability, or responsibilities like work or children.

Here are the steps to starting virtual treatment for the first time:

  1. Start with some self-reflection. Think about your goals with therapy. Then, consider what kind of person you imagine working through these things with.
  2. Find a virtual therapist. You can find one through your insurance company, a therapist directory website, or word of mouth.
  3. Interview potential therapists. Consider their style of counseling and their hourly fee.
  4. Prepare for your first session. This should involve downloading your therapist's video chatting platform and finding a quiet and comfortable space to sit.
  5. Attend your first session. This may feel overwhelming or vulnerable, but it will improve the more you get to know your therapist. 
  6. Make therapy a part of your life. Make time for alcohol therapy online weekly. Some therapists will even recommend having sessions multiple times a week. Get on a routine.

How Much Does Online Therapy Cost?

Online therapy costs vary significantly. Typically, therapy costs anywhere between $65 and $250 per hour. However, the cost of alcohol therapy online depends on factors such as your:

  • Insurance provider
  • Insurance package
  • Location
  • Whether your therapist is in or out of your network
  • Type of treatment needed
  • Number of sessions per month

Some therapists offer sliding-scale payment programs. A sliding scale is a payment structure where people with fewer resources or financial stability pay a lower fee relative to their lifestyle and income. 

Does Insurance Cover Online Therapy?

Some insurance companies cover alcohol therapy online. This is all very dependent on your insurance company and your type of insurance. Some companies offering online treatment that take a wide range of insurances include:

  • Talkspace
  • MDLIVE
  • BetterHelp
  • Amwell
  • Doctor on Demand
  • Teladoc

These online therapy companies allow you to use your insurance company and insurance plan to find therapists in your network that are free, offer copay options, or are generally less expensive than paying out of pocket.

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What is the Most Effective Treatment for Alcohol Dependence?

There is no one way to treat an AUD. The best results are often from a combination of many treatments. Alcohol therapy online is a great way to get extra support from a professional. However, most alcoholics need more than talk therapy to reach sobriety.

Rehabilitation

There are three types of rehabilitation options commonly used to help people with AUD: 

Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient treatment, also called residential treatment, occurs in a rehab facility. These programs provide 24/7, around-the-clock, comprehensive, and structured care. Here, you'll live in safe, substance-free housing and have access to professional medical monitoring.

Often, the first step of an inpatient program is detoxification. From there, behavioral therapy and other services are introduced. These programs typically last 30, 60, or 90 days, sometimes longer.

Outpatient Treatment

Outpatient treatment is less intensive than inpatient treatment programs because you don’t live in the facility. 

Instead, outpatient rehab aims to provide therapy, education, and support in a flexible, come-and-go environment. This treatment is best for people motivated to recover who cannot leave their responsibilities at home, work, or school.

PHPs

Partial hospitalization programs (PHP) provide similar services as inpatient programs. However, in a PHP program, you return home to sleep. PHPs are often used when a person completes inpatient treatment but still needs intensive treatment.

Medication

Medication-assisted therapy (MAT) is a type of treatment that uses medication to help with alcohol addiction. Some of these medications help reduce the adverse side effects of detoxification and withdrawal. Others help reduce cravings, make alcohol less appealing, and normalize bodily functions.

Disulfiram (Antabuse), acamprosate (Campral), and naltrexone are the most common medications for treating AUD. When combined with other evidence-based therapies (such as cognitive behavioral therapy), MAT can help prevent relapse and increase the chances of sobriety.

Counseling

Counseling is often recommended to help people on their road to recovery. Support groups, such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and SMART Recovery, are open to anyone with a substance abuse problem. 

Groups like AA and SMART Recovery are always free. They’re peer-led and dedicated to helping people connect and remain sober together.

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Summary

  • Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is defined by unhealthy drinking habits, including alcoholism and binge drinking.
  • Alcohol therapy online is a flexible way to allow a professional to help you on your journey to sobriety.
  • The price of virtual therapy varies greatly depending on your insurance company, plan, location, treatment plan, and more.
  • Other ways to help you with your AUD include rehabilitation, medication, and counseling.
  1. Binge Drinking.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2022.
  2. Rehm J. “The risks associated with alcohol use and alcoholism.” Alcohol Res Health, 2011.
  3. Dr. Mark Griffiths. “Online Therapy for Addictive Behaviors.” CyberPsychology & Behavior, 2005.

Hadjistavropoulos, Heather, et al. “A systematic review of internet-delivered cognitive behavior therapy for alcohol misuse: study characteristics, program content and outcomes.” Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, 2019.

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Updated on December 22, 2022
6 sources cited
Updated on December 22, 2022
All Alcoholrehabhelp content is medically reviewed or fact checked to ensure as much factual accuracy as possible.

We have strict sourcing guidelines and only link to reputable media sites, academic research institutions and, whenever possible, medically peer reviewed studies.
  1. Binge Drinking.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2022.
  2. Rehm J. “The risks associated with alcohol use and alcoholism.” Alcohol Res Health, 2011.
  3. Dr. Mark Griffiths. “Online Therapy for Addictive Behaviors.” CyberPsychology & Behavior, 2005.
  4. Hadjistavropoulos, Heather, et al. “A systematic review of internet-delivered cognitive behavior therapy for alcohol misuse: study characteristics, program content and outcomes.” Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, 2019.
  5. Siqueira, Lorena, et al. “Binge Drinking.” American Academy of Pediatrics, 2015.
  6. Kay-Lambkin, F.J., et al. “The iTreAD project: a study protocol for a randomized controlled clinical trial of online treatment and social networking for binge drinking and depression in young people.” BMC Public Health, 2015.

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All content created by Alcohol Rehab Help is sourced from current scientific research and fact-checked by an addiction counseling expert. However, the information provided by Alcohol Rehab Help is not a substitute for professional treatment advice.

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