Addiction to smartphones, social media and round-the-clock emailing is often linked to unhappiness and anxiety.
But tech needn’t be bad for our mental wellbeing. In fact, there’s an entire legion of developers devoted to building apps that make us happier.
To coincide with World Mental Health Day, we’ve rounded up five of the most popular.
Sleepio is designed to shake off the vicious cycle of insomnia. It’s a clinically proven way of getting more shut-eye, which uses cognitive behavioural therapy to address users’ thoughts, daily schedules, lifestyles and bedroom environments. Users log on to the app or website once a week to access a personalised 20 minute session. In a placebo controlled clinical trial, 75% of poor sleepers achieved healthy sleep with this app.
Lantern provides subscription programmes delivered by researchers, technologists and clinicians who translate clinical research into simple cognitive behavioural therapy exercises.
Developed by the US National Center for Telehealth and Technology, Breathe 2 Relax is designed to help users combat the effects of stress with breathing exercises, which have been proven to decrease the body’s fight-or-flight response. It also assists with mood stabilisation, anger control and anxiety management.
Developed by the US Department of Veteran Affairs, PTSD Coach is designed to help people manage the symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. The app, which has been downloaded more than 100,000 times in 74 countries, provides reliable information on PTSD treatments, tools for screening, tackling and tracking symptoms and direct links to support and health.
Remente takes a holistic approach to improving lifestyles, by tackling mental wellbeing, mindfulness, relationships or stress management. The app requires new users to assess their lives based on a scale of one to 10 in categories such as relationships, health and fitness, social life and more. It’s been developed by Kjell Enhanger, who was a mental trainer to Olympic medal winning athletes.
Useful websites and helplines:
Mind, open Monday to Friday, 9am-6pm on 0300 123 3393 Samaritans offers a listening service which is open 24 hours a day, on 116 123 (UK and ROI - this number is FREE to call and will not appear on your phone bill.) Get Connected is a free advice service for people under 25. Call 0808 808 4994 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org