Technology key to boosting mental health

SHAY LEDINGHAM

Online applications are providing people safe, private and effective ways of managing their mental health. Source: Creative Commons

Online applications provide safe, private and effective ways of managing mental health. Source: Pixabay.

Online and mobile applications are giving people the opportunity to effectively manage their own mental health.

By providing easily accessible, self-managed apps, industry practitioners are seeing positive results in treating some mental health illnesses, particularly with people seeking support with depression and anxiety.

ReachOut CEO Johnathan Nicolas said online programs are continuing to prove successful in giving people some strategies in tackling their own mental health challenges.

“What we’re now seeing with self-help tools and apps is that, for many people, that’s enough to help them manage the difficulties they’re going through.”

Mr Nicolas said that anonymity and constant availability were also two of the biggest drawcards for people looking to take control of their mental health.

“Anybody, anywhere, anytime of the day can use their mobile phone or computer [and] they don’t have to talk to anyone and still get the help they need,” he said.

Two kinds of applications aimed at reducing anxiety and depression include mood managers, which allow people to be mindful of how and why they may be feeling a certain way throughout the day, and guided breathing or meditation exercises.

Griffith University Head of Counselling Lexie Mooney agreed that online self-help resources could be incredibly successful, but also allowed people to have the confidence to reach out for further help if they needed it.

According to recent statistics, around 900, 000 Queenslanders are currently living with a mental illness of varying severity.

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