Apps For Mental Health & Well-being | Emily Bashforth

Apps For Mental Health & Well-being


There's an app for everything these days. Like, literally, there are apps to record your sleeping patterns, apps that will record TV shows for you even when you aren't at home, apps to help your organise what's in (or what isn't in) your bank account and apps that educate you on looking after pets. The fact that there are so many apps out there is fantastic, as it helps make our daily lives a little easier and slightly more entertaining.
Personally, I'm a big fan of apps. Admittedly, I tend to use social media apps most frequently, however, there are some others which I swear by. In particular, some mental health and wellbeing apps. The world of apps has become so saturated, it can be difficult to actually find a decent one, you just have to download them really, and hope for the best. But, I wanted to share with you a handful of my favourite mental health apps to save you the hassle of downloading a ton of random ones based on App Store reviews and then deleting them because they weren't your cup of tea. I have also included their descriptions as their creators explain the apps in better ways than I ever could.

Obviously, we cannot rely on apps to make our mental health tip top but they can make things a bit easier. Technology is a marvellous thing and the fact that, as a society, we've become so dependent on it doesn't have to be a negative thing, especially because apps like these ones are having such a positive impact. These have all been carefully designed to ensure their users really benefit from them. I like them and so I hope that you will too, even if you just find one which becomes your new virtual best friend and helps to take the weight off a tiny bit.

Take a look at my recommendations and perhaps download them. However, keep in mind that applications are not an alternative to seeking medical help, despite what their owners tell you, and, if you are experiencing mental health and wellbeing issues and have concerns about your symptoms, you should talk to either a loved one or professional in order to get yourself back on track. Apps are awesome but they could never help you in the way that a human being can, remember that. Enjoy them, though, because anything that makes life a little bit better is always worth it.

Mindshift

Struggling with anxiety? Tired of missing out? There are things you can do to stop anxiety and fear from controlling your life. MindShift is an app designed to help teens and young adults cope with anxiety. It can help you change how you think about anxiety. Rather than trying to avoid anxiety, you can make an important shift and face it.
MindShift will help you learn how to relax, develop more helpful ways of thinking, and identify active steps that will help you take charge of your anxiety. This app includes strategies to deal with everyday anxiety, as well as specific tools to tackle:
  • Sleep
  • Riding Out Intense Emotions 
  • Perfectionism
  • Social Anxiety 
  • Performance Anxiety
  • Worry
  • Panic
SAM: Self-help for Anxiety Management

SAM has been developed by a university team of psychologists, computer scientists and student users. Established methods of self-help have been combined with high standards of usability to provide an engaging, flexible, and practical resource.

Features:
  • • Clearly laid out menus
  • • User guidance
  • • External links
  • • Self-monitoring of anxiety with graphical display
  • • 25 self-help options covering: Information about anxiety, Thinking and anxiety, Physical relaxation, Mental relaxation, Health and Anxiety
  • • Guidance on putting self-help into practise
  • • Closed social network of SAM users
CBT-i Coach

CBT-i Coach is for people who are engaged in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Insomnia with a health provider, or who have experienced symptoms of insomnia and would like to improve their sleep habits. The app will guide users through the process of learning about sleep, developing positive sleep routines, and improving their sleep environments. It provides a structured program that teaches strategies proven to improve sleep and help alleviate symptoms of insomnia.

Sibly - Your Mental Health Coach

Sibly’s goal is to collaborate with you and help you achieve your personal goals by applying tools such as reflective listening, motivational interviewing, cognitive behavioural skills, and other empirically-based tools. From asking insightful questions to offering new ways to look at the facts of your life, Sibly's responsive, reliable, and competent coaches help you challenge negative thoughts, and motivate you to achieve your goals. You are assigned a coaching team that serves as the single voice behind Sibly. Sibly is your 24/7 emotional and mental health support. Periodically, you will receive a guidance report that summarises your goals, highlights your progress, and suggests tools to support you.

RCPsych Mental Health App

This is an application developed for the Royal College of Psychiatrists by Dr. Melvyn Zhang. 

The aim of this application is to:
  • Provide general public information about key mental health disorders 
  • Provide links to relevant videos and podcasts 
  • Provide links to the Royal College Website to which members of the public could find further information about mental health disorders.
Smiling Mind

Smiling Mind is modern meditation, a unique web and app-based program developed by psychologists and educators to help bring balance to people’s lives. Just as we eat well and stay fit to keep our body healthy, meditation is about mental health and looking after the mind. Smiling Mind is a not-for-profit organisation that works to make mindfulness meditation accessible to all. Our mission is to provide accessible, life-long tools based in mindfulness meditation.

WellMind

WellMind is your free NHS mental health and wellbeing app designed to help you with stress, anxiety and depression. The app includes advice, tips and tools to improve your mental health and boost your wellbeing.

My Wellbeing:
  • Record and monitor your feelings to track your moods over time
  • Remind yourself what you’re looking forward to, track your daily achievements, and log what you’re grateful for to encourage good mental health
  • Add reminders to boost your wellbeing, or events that you’re looking forward to
Help with:
  • Get advice on stress, depression and anxiety
  • Find out the symptoms of these common mental health problems
  • Access advice on what you should do if you feel this way
  • Read our self-help guides
  • View our Body Map to see how stress, depression & anxiety can affect the body
  • Try 5 quick and easy tips to improve your mental health
Help in a Crisis:
  • Get support if you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis
  • Access national helpline numbers
  • Find tips on how to stay safe in a mental health crisis
Relax:
  • Unwind with our three relaxation audio tracks
  • Wind down quickly with our two- and three-minute tracks
  • Relax more deeply with the longer muscle relaxation track
Play the game:
  • Take control of a snake as you seek out food
  • Distract yourself when you’re feeling stressed or anxious
  • Get handy health and wellbeing tips along the way
Elefriends

Elefriends is a supportive online community from the mental health charity Mind. We all know what it’s like to struggle sometimes, but now there’s a safe place to listen, share and be heard. Whether you’re feeling good right now, or really low, it’s a place to share experiences and listen to others.

  • Post updates and catch up with the community feed.
  • Read and write posts offline.
  • Share photos directly from your device.
  • Passcode protected.
  • Choose when and how you want to receive notifications.
  • Moderated by the ‘Ele handlers’ from 10am until midnight.
Relax Melodies

Relax Melodies is the leader in personalised relaxation and sleep assistance. Just custom mix your favourite high quality sounds from a selection of 50, then slip naturally into a relaxed state or a deep, rejuvenating sleep.

Features:
  • 50 High quality ambient sounds, including 2 binaural beats frequencies for brainwave entrainment.
  • Mix your favourite sounds together with different volume to create your own personal melodies and get infinite possibilities!
  • High quality Retina graphics
  • Include 8 off the shelf favourites for easy startup
  • Create, Save, Name, Sort and Replay your favourites easily
  • Multiple Alarms & Timers system. Use your own favourite as alarm to wake up slowly

What's Up?

What's Up? is a fantastic free app utilising some of the best CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) and ACT (Acceptance Commitment Therapy) methods to help you cope with Depression, Anxiety, Anger, Stress and more!

Features:
  • 12 common negative thinking patterns and simple methods to overcome them
  • 10 great metaphors to help you cope with negative feelings
  • A comprehensive diary to keep your thoughts and feelings together in, including the ability to rate feelings on a scale out of 10
  • A positive and negative habit tracker. Set goals to practise those good habits while ending the bad ones!
  • A catastrophe scale. Put your problems into a better perspective when things are too much
  • A grounding game containing over 100 fun questions to help keep you grounded and in the present when stress is taking over
  • 3 simple breathing techniques for keeping calm and relaxed
  • Forums! Talk with people that may be feeling just like you from all around the planet, without worrying about the like/dislike system
What are your favourite mental health apps? <3

Love, Emily :)

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