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While more than 20% of Americans deal with some form of mental illness, the topic of mental health still evades mainstream conversation. Fortunately, attitudes around mental health continue to shift and more people feel empowered to discuss these issues on wider platforms.
Podcasts offer an accessible and effective medium for listeners to pique their interests and expand knowledge in many areas, including mental health. Mental health podcasts serve an array of audiences, including patients, clinical mental health counselors, and counseling students interested in learning more about the field.
Podcasts offer an accessible and effective medium for listeners to pique their interests and expand knowledge in many areas, including mental health.
While mental health podcasts are not a substitute for speaking to a licensed therapist or counselor, they may benefit individuals looking for mental health tips.
This page ranks the 10 best mental health podcasts based on listener ratings and the leading platforms' top podcast charts. This ranking highlights the topics each podcast covers and what audiences can gain from listening.
The Best Podcasts About Mental Health
Ten Percent Happier with Dan Harris | UnF*ck Your Brain with Kara Loewentheil | Cleaning up the Mental Mess with Dr. Caroline Leaf | Therapy for Black Girls | Mental Illness Happy Hour | The Hardcore Self Help Podcast | Anxiety Slayer with Shann and Ananga | The Anxiety Guy | Savvy Psychologist | Therapy Thoughts with Tiffany Roe
To create this ranking, we explored the top mental health podcasts across a variety of platforms including Apple Music, Spotify, Stitcher, and Google Podcasts. We cross-referenced the top podcasts from all of these platforms with listener ratings to select the ten best mental health podcasts.
After suffering a panic attack on live television while hosting Good Morning America, ABC News anchor Dan Harris decided to explore the art of meditation. This exploration led to Harris penning the books "10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head," "Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge," and "Found Self-Help That Actually Works – A True Story."
The books' success encouraged Harris to start the "Ten Percent Happier with Dan Harris" podcast. With over 400 episodes, this podcast explores mental health topics, including meditation, creativity, social anxiety, and relationships. This lighthearted show often features notable guests including celebrities, scientists, and meditation instructors.
Each episode runs about one hour with two new episodes each week.
Master Certified Confidence Coach Kara Loewentheil, J.D., offers insightful advice rooted in feminism and psychology on how to boost confidence and overcome social anxiety and imposter syndrome.
Acclaimed across multiple podcast streaming platforms, "UnF*ck Your Brain" aims to help listeners move past negative mindsets and towards self-empowerment. The podcast offers over 230 episodes covering topics like sexism, relationships, victim blaming, thought work, and radical self-love.
New episodes are posted each week.
Cognitive neuroscientist and author Dr. Caroline Leaf's podcast offers listeners practical tips and guidance for improving their lives and taking control of their own mental health.
A spinoff of Dr. Leaf's book with the same title, the "Cleaning up the Mental Mess" podcast covers subjects like the neuroscience of dreams and nightmares, healing mental health struggles with art and poetry, deescalating intense emotions, and breaking cycles of worry and fear. Dr. Leaf offers a free text service that provides daily mental health tips. Listeners may also take advantage of her Brain Detox app NeuroCycle.
One-hour podcasts are posted twice a week.
Dr. Joy Harden Bradford, a licensed psychologist based in Atlanta, brings mental health topics to the forefront of mainstream conversation. Featured in Oprah Magazine and Forbes, Dr. Bradford boasts an impressive resume and often says her work sits "at the intersection of psychology and pop culture."
Showcased on the Therapy for Black Girls website, the weekly podcast features Dr. Bradford in conversation about topics in mental health and personal growth. Some of the recent episodes discuss subjects including gender, body image, relationships, complex PTSD, and maintaining boundaries.
Episodes typically range from 40-60 minutes.
Hosted by comedian Paul Gilmartin, the "Mental Illness Happy Hour" podcast features interviews and conversations with other comedians, friends, artists, and doctors discussing the nature of mental illness. The lighthearted show specifically examines mental illness among creative individuals.
As the former long-time host of TBS' "Dinner and a Movie," Gilmartin pulls from personal experience to normalize conversations on mental health. The podcast's website features a community discussion board for listeners to connect and share stories.
60-minute episodes are posted weekly. The back catalog comprises over 400 episodes.
Dr. Robert Duff, a psychotherapist from California, saw the mental health field as too intimidating for those experiencing mental illness, so he set out to make this information more accessible. He uses his extensive knowledge and experience to explain complicated mental health and psychological issues in a straightforward manner.
"The Hardcore Self Help Podcast" answers listener questions about mental health in an approachable, conversational format. Recent podcast topics include feeling bad about feeling good, coping with career grief, health anxiety during the pandemic, and working through a break up.
Episodes post weekly and typically run 35-40 minutes in length.
Boasting over eight million downloads, "Anxiety Slayer™ with Shann and Ananga" is a popular podcast for listeners hoping to tackle their anxiety issues.
Hosts Shann Vander Leek and Ananga Sivyer have combined experience in yoga, life coaching, natural medicine, and personal development. They provide listeners with thoughtful explorations and purposeful support in combating anxiety and living a better life.
Since launching in 2009, the Anxiety Slayer™ podcast has amassed hundreds of episodes in its catalog. The podcast's website also offers learning modules and online courses in subjects like health anxiety, calming a fragile mind, and anxiety attacks.
Weekly episodes range from 20-30 minutes in length.
Neuro-Linguistic Master Practitioner and Cognitive Behavioral Therapist Dennis Simsek hosts "The Anxiety Guy Podcast," which has amassed more than four million downloads.
Episodes address generalized anxiety disorder, hypochondria or health anxiety, and depression. The podcast offers listeners quick, bite-sized discussions on various mental health topics.
Recent episodes covered meditation for healing, habits that worsen anxiety, powerful quotes for healing depression, and how we can prevent anxiety. Simsek also offers online courses in overcoming anxiety and other resources for listeners.
Weekly short episodes range from 10-20 minutes in length.
Clinical psychologist Dr. Jade Wu set out to make health and clinical psychology topics more approachable and entertaining for the average person. Outside of the clinical setting where she studies sleep and health conditions, Dr. Wu's podcast provides listeners with personable and easy-to-digest exploration of psychological science topics.
The podcast emphasizes the causes of human emotions, providing insight into how individuals interact and build relationships with others. With the goal of helping listeners live healthier emotional lives, Dr. Wu offers short episodes on relatable and important mental health topics.
Recent topics discussed include lucid dreaming, death anxiety, the impact of pornography on the brain, and career changes during the pandemic.
New 10-25 minutes episodes post twice a week.
Tiffany Roe is a mental health counselor and psychology teacher who offers quick and straightforward thoughts and lessons to listeners on her self-help podcast.
Roe provides tips and simple explorations to help listeners improve their lives and overall emotional well-being. This podcast simulates therapy sessions for listeners, offering useful and practical tools for combating various mental health issues.
Recent episode topics include social justice and self-compassion, guided affirmation and meditation, intuitive eating, and OCD recovery.
Weekly episodes are typically 60 minutes long.
Other Clinical Counseling Media
Thanks in part to the growing public interest in discussing mental health, access to counseling media continues to expand. In addition to mental health podcasts, those interested in learning more about the field can turn to online resources.
Counselors, patients, and students can access medical textbooks, scholarly journal articles, magazines, blogs, and videos to further explore mental health topics and contemporary issues in counseling.
Explore the links below to discover more clinical counseling media.
Discover more counseling media:
5 Documentaries About Mental Illness
5 Great Podcasts for School Counselors
30 Best Self-Improvement Books for Those With Depression
5 Great Podcasts About Human Sexuality
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the role of a clinical mental health counselor?
Clinical mental health counselors work with patients dealing with emotional, cognitive, and behavioral conditions. They use evidence-based treatments like talk therapy to guide patients through their symptoms and offer healthier coping mechanisms.
Is online mental health counseling legit?
Yes! Online mental health counseling offers a flexible, accessible option for patients to seek the therapy remotely. Patients should seek online counseling from licensed mental health providers. Many insurance policies cover these services.
Are podcasts good for mental health?
Podcasts about mental health are not a replacement for professional counseling services. However, it offers listeners a way to hear from experts in the field and learn more about mental health topics. Podcasts also offer listeners useful skills and tools to cope with mental illness.
What do you listen to when you're depressed?
Anyone suffering with symptoms of depression should seek professional help from a therapist or physician. Listening to podcasts and learning tools to improve mental health and ease depressive symptoms can be used in tandem with professional care.
What sounds help anxiety?
Autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR) sounds may provide a soothing effect for someone experiencing anxiety. Some of these sounds include whispering, tapping, page turning, and writing.
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