Brandi Bleak

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Mental Health apps

Technology, Apps, HealthBrandi BleakComment

SAM

SAM is an app that walk users through a process of logging mood levels to help manage anxiety. Users list items that cause anxiety, then view suggestions on overcoming the feelings associated with that action. I like that within SAM users can select from several types of exercises within the app to coach them towards better mental health as well as meditation exercises. The website states that SAM will help you to understand what causes anxiety, monitor thoughts and behaviour over time and manage anxiety through self-help exercises and private reflection.

Talkspace

Think of this as a therapist within your smartphone. Users can select a from an option of unlimited messaging, video conferencing, or couples therapy right from the privacy of your own home via a mobile device. Talkspace has over 200 licensed therapists available to chat whenever it's convenient for their users. Another feature users like is the anonymity of being able to chat within having to see someone in person. Prices vary depending on options selected.

Stop, Breathe & Think

Breathe, as its shown after downloading, is a simple meditation app perfect for both beginners and experts alike. The app offers a variety of guided meditations to completely walk users through the steps of calming down after a long day and bringing focus and relaxation to the surface. Mindfulness is talked about often, and I have found Breathe to be the app that has helped me personally to start enjoying the practice of meditating, even if it's only for a few moments at a time.

Start each session by checking in with the app and rating your current mood, then get suggestions on which meditations will be best for that day. There are options to purchase additional meditations, but I find that within the free options, there are plenty to use. Users may also simply set a timer to mediate within the guided, or audio instructions, sets. 

MindShift

MindShift focuses on helping youth to better cope with anxiety. Users are presented with a "tailor-made toolbox" for the various situations they encounter and how to better overcome anxious feelings. There are categories that include test anxiety, perfectionism, social anxiety, performance anxiety, worry, panic, and conflict. MindShift intends to help users "learn how to relax, develop more helpful ways of thinking, and identify active steps that will help users take charge of their anxiety."

Within the section titled Anxiety 101 users can discover definitions of anxiety, where it may come from, and what to do about it. Then, users can visit the Situations tab to add specific situations that may cause them anxiety and read more information and recommendations to overcome it in the future. The feature that may be most helpful for tracking the source of anxiety may be the Check Yourself tab. There, users rate their levels of anxiety and what symptoms they may be feeling. Lastly, the Inspiration area provides a quote that you can star, or favorite, for viewing again later.