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Expat Exchange - Understanding Mental Health in the United States
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Understanding Mental Health in the United States

By Betsy Burlingame

William Russell
William Russell

Summary: Living abroad as an expat comes with its own set of challenges and stressors. Being familiar with the mental healthcare support services available in the United States is important.

Moving to a new country can be an exciting adventure, but it also comes with its own set of challenges, including taking care of your mental health. For expats and digital nomads in the United States, understanding the mental health services and cultural attitudes towards mental health is crucial for a smooth transition and maintaining well-being.

Finding a Mental Health Care Provider in the United States

Finding an English-speaking mental health care provider in the United States is generally straightforward, especially in urban areas where there is a higher concentration of therapists, psychologists, and psychiatrists. Many providers are accustomed to working with a diverse clientele, including expats and digital nomads, and are sensitive to the unique challenges they may face.

Comparability of Mental Health Care Services

The mental health care services in the United States are likely to be similar to what one would expect in other English-speaking nations, with a strong emphasis on confidentiality, patient rights, and evidence-based practices. However, the approach to treatment and the healthcare system itself may differ, which can affect how services are accessed and paid for.

Standard of Care for Mood Disorders

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is indeed a standard of care for anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders in the United States. It is a widely accepted and empirically supported treatment method that many mental health professionals are trained to provide.

Online Mental Health Services for Expats and Nomads

Expats and digital nomads often favor using online services for their convenience and flexibility. In the United States, there is a growing availability of online mental health care options. Technological barriers are minimal, as the country has a robust internet infrastructure, although there may be legal and licensing considerations for providers offering services across state lines.

Other Considerations for Mental Health Care

One important consideration for expats and nomads seeking mental health care in the United States is the cost and insurance coverage. Mental health services can be expensive, and navigating the insurance system can be complex. Additionally, cultural differences in attitudes towards mental health may impact one's experience, as there is still some stigma associated with seeking mental health treatment in certain communities.

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


William Russell
William Russell

William Russell
William Russell

Upper East Side, NYC

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William Russell
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