How Can Digital Technology Help Improve Mental Health?

Hundreds of thousands of people are affected by mental health conditions globally. For a long time, these conditions were stigmatized and kept as discreet as possible. Help for these conditions was confined to the offices of therapists.

Recently, people have started to open up about these conditions. More information is becoming available, and solutions are getting more creative. Mental health and digital technology can work hand-in-hand for spreading awareness. 

The positive impact of using technology for behavioural and relaxation apps or using social media to form support groups is evident. People who suffer from anxiety can even opt to unwind online with one of the casinos reviewed at Online Slots Canada, and that has been approved by experts in the field like Michelle H Thomas.

Online entertainment has a dual benefit. Firstly, quality gaming can be engaging. Secondly, anxiety sufferers are not forced to go out in public to have fun. This article will look at some ways that mental health can be positively affected by technology.

Support Groups

It is almost impossible to stay off social media. Attention has been drawn to the adverse effects of social platforms, but the benefits of technology and mental health cannot be ignored. The creation of support groups on platforms such as WhatsApp and Facebook has had far-reaching effects.

Members of the society can quickly get snippets of information from support groups as it filters through their news feeds. This reduces stigma and increases understanding. For those that need support from such groups, it is easily accessible.

It takes slightly less confidence to reach out to strangers online than physically. This allows even the most reserved individual to seek help. Support groups usually consist of people who are suffering from similar conditions and can help you feel like you are not alone.

Apps 

The variety of mobile apps available that can assist with relaxation is unlimited. Some of these apps help with breathing techniques and grounding to avoid panic attacks. Other apps can be used for tracking of behavioural triggers over an extended period.

Tracking behavioural triggers digitally can help you avoid them in the future. There are also telehealth therapists available on certain apps. These programs can be handy if and when you aren’t feeling up for a physical consultation.

Entertainment

Sometimes, all you need is to switch off from reality and become engulfed in something entertaining. Digital technology makes things convenient in this regard. The emergence of online casinos and online gaming can allow you to engage with other people through live platforms digitally.

This digital socialization is advantageous because interaction takes place without triggering social anxiety. 

Online Screening And Quizzes

As common as depression and anxiety may be, many are still in denial of it. There is a fear of being ostracized if it is talked about publicly. Some people have a suspicion that what they are feeling is not a fleeting moment of being emotional. At the same time, they are too afraid to seek a professional assessment. 

Recently, the national alliance on mental illness and Google have developed a mental health screening questionnaire. This is aimed at bridging the gap and assisting those who have a suspicion but are still undiagnosed.

The quiz is a self-assessment one backed by medical information. It is aimed at checking if you are clinically depressed. The results from this quiz may then guide you to seek professional assistance if it is needed.

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Virtual Reality Treatments

This treatment is currently in its clinical trial stage, and only a few clinicians have been trained on how to use it. Virtual reality may just become the mental health technology solution of the future. It is a modern twist on the exposure therapy technique. The exposure therapy technique assists patients in reducing flashbacks and anxiety triggers.

This was done by having the patient relive their trauma in a safe and controlled environment. VR treatment is based on a similar premise. It involves the patient wearing a headset where images and sounds from the patient’s past are mimicked to a degree. 

While the patient is wearing the headset, they are encouraged to discuss their previous experience. The encouragement aims to become desensitized to the trauma triggers. VR treatments are also being used for gaining understanding. 

Scientists at Yale are using this method to understand the feelings of social rejection and a distorted self-image. These feelings are experienced in people with borderline personality disorder (BPD).

Conclusion

The use of technology in mental health is only beginning to scratch the surface. As more advanced technology becomes available, there will be an increase in methods of improving mental health.

While the current impact may seem small, these little achievements have a ripple-effect and may create a new perspective for someone suffering from such a condition.