Technology and Mental Health: Finding Support Through Apps

With so many advances in technology, we are reaching greater heights in terms of quality and accuracy of healthcare. One of the simplest ways technology has branched into mental healthcare has been through the development and usage of apps. There are many benefits of apps that are focused on improving mental healthcare; they provide a level of convenience, low-cost, and 24-hr access. These can be very important for people who need in-the-moment care or have severe cases of mental illness. There aren’t many studies out there that look at the efficacy of these apps for treatment; however, they can be very useful and supplement care that someone is already receiving.

Mental Health Apps

A lot of mental health apps have been developed for many different purposes, such as self-management, skill-training, illness-management/support, and passive symptom tracking. Self-management apps, where people are able to add information about their symptoms and the progression of their mental health, can be very helpful for someone in therapy. They can help you have a more accurate understanding of your symptoms and what affects your mental health. It can also be helpful in helping you pinpoint areas where you are suffering or improving.

Skill-training apps help people focus on specific areas and can feel like game-like apps, but they are actually learning skills and ways to help their mental illness. One of the most important applications of technology for mental health is expanding the ways in which patients can find support from others.

Passive symptom tracking apps are different from the other apps that have been mentioned, because it does not require users to input information, but instead collects their information and analyzes it to understand how the person is feeling. This is in-line with research that monitors a user’s information and can predict whether or not someone is depressed or experiencing a depressive episode.

These kinds of apps can also add to research efforts. In research people are often asked to recall events, feelings, or symptoms from weeks or even months prior. With app-tracking, people are more accurately able to provide information that can help them understand themselves and can also be useful when talking to professionals for mental health and research. Technology is showing a lot of promise in the varying applications that it can help with mental illness.

Emotional Health Support

Finding support to focus on emotional health is important and that’s why Lifeline Connections provides free, unlimited support 24/7. Lifeline uses the myStrength app to supplement our services and offer a safe and secure way to help you build resiliency, manage stress or anxiety, manage chronic pain, or prevent relapse. Simply log into www.mystrength.com and enter the access code LLCFAMILY.

If you or someone you know is struggling with a mental health disorder, like depression or anxiety, please feel free to contact the professional team at Lifeline Connections for help. Getting yourself help, whether it is through self-help or by reaching out to professionals is an important part of recognizing that you are struggling and is a good step forward to get the help that you need. You can visit Lifelineconnections.org or call 360.397.8246 for more information.

Sources:
https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/technology-and-the-future-of-mental-health-treatment/index.shtml

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