Our collective mental health is getting worse. It’s strange that in a world where we seemingly have everything in abundance – at least, compared to our ancestors – that we are more unhappy than ever before. There are many different reasons and theories for why we are in a crisis of mental health, but for now, we can leave that to the pundits and experts to solve. What’s more important is that we take ownership of our mental health and take it seriously.
Smartphones are often described only in a negative light. It’s true that they can be making us worse, but to deny the good things they offer would be a mistake. One major way they can help us is through mental health treatment. Below is a top 10 list of the best mental health apps.
Betterhelp is Silicon Valley’s answer to therapy, and it quickly became dubbed one of the best mental health sites. The tech company launched in 2013 and has been a way to link people with therapists around the world.
Each session costs, on average, much less than a face-to-face session with a traditional therapist, yet the conversations flow in a similar way. Users can speak over the phone, via text message, or through other mediums. This is perfect for those who want therapy to be more convenient and cheaper as they offer some of the best prices for online therapy.
Woebot is a personal “mental health ally” that helps you feel better. It’s powered by AI and will check in on you, ask you how you’re doing and will use basic techniques if you’re in a moment of crisis. The app is free, and feedback is generally very positive, and it provides a lot of support in regards to literature and education too.
Meditation is an activity that has been around for millennia in the East, but it has been growing in popularity in the West during the past few decades. Headspace is a mood-boosting app that helps you focus and provides guided meditation for beginners. There are sleep sounds, daily exercises, focus features, and even physical movement exercise guidance. This is the go-to app for mindfulness.
Tracking your mood is an interesting idea that can help us become more reflective and understanding of our triggers. MoodKit was designed for this – to help break negative thought patterns, reduce stress, and use CBT to help reinforce positive thoughts. It can help spot triggers and improve gratification, too.
iBreathe is a free app that is dedicated to breathing. It sounds simple, but focused breathing is a popular technique used around the world to help reduce stress and anxiety, and if you’re a Wim Hof believer, many more benefits. iBreathe is a simple way to introduce breathing exercises into your daily routine.
Happify has a freemium model to help boost your mood – that’s its only goal. But how it gets there is through CBT and other techniques which can focus on stress reduction, building confidence, mindfulness, and career success. But ultimately, the end goal is to boost your mood. It’s expensive beyond the free version.
Calm is a paid app ($69.99 per year) that focuses on a wide range of mental health areas. This is the kind of app for people who just want one place to go to for all their mental health needs. So, there are features for guided meditations, claiming exercise, breathing techniques, and sleeping music. There are mood-tracking features too, and story recordings and the only thing it doesn’t really have is actual therapy or two-way conversation. It’s expensive for this reason, but it can solve the stress of having five apps for five different uses.
Popularized by its utilization of influencers, Talkspace is much like Betterhelp in that it offers therapy over the phone. Many different subscription plans are available, as well as many communication options. All therapists are licensed, and where Talkspace excels is being able to pick your therapist yourself from a list of suggestions.
9 Quit That!
Many of us struggle with mental health because of an addiction – and vice versa. Whether it’s smoking, drinking, drugs, or indulging in shallow stimulation like scrolling TikTok, breaking these habits can often become a core goal to getting healthy. Well, Quit That! It is made exactly for this reason. It’s free, simple, and helps track habits – or rather, track the days where you abstain from such habits. Unfortunately, there’s no education or support element, so it’s advisable this is only used in conjunction with therapy or other help.
Amwell is a little bit different from Talkspace and Betterhelp in that it is a broader Telehealthcare company. This means that instead of just delivering therapy, it can serve customers with a broader range of problems. For example, you can find psychiatrists here, unlike the others, and they can diagnose and even prescribe medication. Some of the best mental health online treatments, longitudinal therapy, and psychiatry are three areas in which Amwell stands out.