Can Mental Health Apps Help Us Feel Better?

According to studies conducted by the World Health Organisation, an estimated 450 million people around the world suffer from mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and insomnia.

This places mental health disorders among the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide and the numbers only continue to grow. With these statistics in mind, many clinicians have turned to apps to aid in their patient’s treatment and here we explore the 5 best-rated mental health apps.

Teenage Depression: Code Blue

Designed to assist teenage victims of bullying and sufferers of depression, Code Blue allows users to easily receive help when they need it most. By creating a support group made up of contacts, users are able to alert the group that they need urgent assistance and contact can then be made via text or call.

The app even allows the user’s location to be shared with their support group and members are able to notify the user that they are on their way to their location.

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy: Lantern

Using both web and mobile platforms, Lantern combines cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) techniques with advice from mental health experts. Upon downloading the app, users are prompted to take an assessment to determine their strengths and weaknesses in 5 key areas which affect mental health: body, stress/anxiety, mood, sleep, and social life.

The app then prescribes daily CBT exercises based on the user’s assessment which can easily be completed between online betting sessions and a professional coach trained in CBT is available to provide feedback.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: PTSD Coach

Developed by the Department of Veterans Affairs’ National Center for PTSD, PTSD coach is designed for military personal, veterans, and civilians experiencing the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

While the app should not be used to clinically diagnose the condition, it does provide a self-assessment tool which allows users to track their symptoms over time and tools to help manage symptoms. Users are also able to locate nearby treatment programs and store contacts for personal support.

Anxiety: SAM – Self Help for Anxiety Management

Designed to assist suffers of anxiety, SAM: Self-Help for Anxiety Management allows users to record their anxiety levels and identify triggers.

With 25 self-help options to help users manage the physical and mental symptoms of anxiety, SAM allows user to create personalised anxiety toolkits by including features of the app that they find most useful for quick access.

Free to download for both iOS and Android devices, SAM also offers a social cloud for the sharing of experiences.

Mood Fluctuations: Daylio

Daylio is perfect for those who have noticed mood fluctuations at certain periods throughout the day. This handy free app helps users pinpoint trends in mood fluctuations sooner so that adjustments can be made and is PIN-protected to ensure the privacy of their users.

Moods and activities are tracked throughout the day through the use of graphics and the app then provides stats and trends to help you understand your mood better.