Most people find at some point in their life they need a little help. This could be talking with a friend, getting help from a coach, or even going the more professional route and seeing a psychologist or a psychiatrist.
But, there's a great stigma that comes with it, one that really isn't deserved. Far too many people forgo treatment to avoid a stigma… until far too late.
Many people are turning to apps rather than visiting a professional. Many of them are also free or low cost, as opposed to the cost of professional help, which is quite expensive.
But, there's also an unintended benefit. For people who may be suffering from anxiety and visiting a professional is far too much, apps help give privacy and security to those who need it.
Why Use Apps In Today's World
Within moments, you can have various mental health apps on your phone, from helping you calm anxiety to meditate to even getting professional advice when you need it.
The professional world has a split opinion on these apps. Some find apps fantastic help to get the help they need when they need it. But, others believe that people are using them as a substitution for therapy. Most apps can't engage with people or offer insights that a trained professional can.
Many of the apps are very specialized, dealing with specific problems such as suicide, anxiety, or disillusionment. Some of the most popular ones help people focus and calm themselves, allowing them to solve their own problems.
One of the interesting ways that apps fill in a missing gap is whether they can help people who don't quite yet understand what's going on in their mental health. They may just want a little boost to their mood or a way to organize their thoughts. In some cases, using an app to help gain focus and clarity might help them avoid neeing professional help later on.
Let's take a look at some of these apps and see what they have to say.
Top 10 Mental Health Apps
One of the best overall mental health apps, this one is free and designed to help you keep track of goals, moods, and frustrations. This app can really help you understand what's happening with your mind, allowing you to understand mild anxiety, depression, and stress.
The app provides you with different articles and audios that can help you understand your thoughts and provide skills to help you consciously change things that might be triggering you.
For many people, taking a few minutes for meditation can help calm anxiety and help you prepare for the day. Headspace is one of the best new apps that guide you through various levels of meditation so you can learn how to live mindfully. They advertise bite-size guided meditation that helps you accept your own body through feeling your emotions and breathing.
As a paid app, this can get you going on meditation and calming exercises. There is a section that helps in the event of an emotional crisis and can help you focus. The biggest drawback is that it's not appropriate for people with more advanced mental health issues that need help with consistency or working to goals.
If you're looking to talk to a licensed medical health professional, Talkspace is what you need. This is a paid app that gives you access to professionals nearly instantly and allows you to have conversations as you need.
This app is perfect for low-level anxiety, depression, and mental health issues, although you don't get to choose the type of professional you speak with. So, if you're looking for instant access to talk to somebody that can help, this is one that will help.
If you're dealing with stress, anxiety, or depression, MoodMission is an app developed by mental health professionals. It gives users tasks and goals, which they call missions, to help boost mood, deal with stress and overcome physical manifestations of the effects.
This app is great for tracking how you feel and giving you a way to change your state.
This app uses cognitive behavioral therapy tools that help people with mild to moderate anxiety and depression. It helps track your mood daily, helping you identify patterns and experiences. Then, it provides tools and skills to take care of specific issues, such as public speaking, morning anxiety, and dealing with bosses.
There's both a free and paid version of the app. You have the ability to join and take part in the community that allows you to share your experiences with the group and ask questions and get advice.
If you're looking to develop yourself and keep a positive state of mind, Happify helps you understand your changing emotions and helps keep track of them and your daily activities. It's a fun app, incorporating more games and science-based activities. The whole goal behind this app is to reduce stress, build resilience, and reprogram negative thoughts.
The app is perfect for people undergoing stress but usually do not succumb to depression or anxiety.
If you have clinical depression and looking to manage your symptoms, depression CBT helps encourage self-care behavior to improve mood. The app works with your level of depression and helps you move well by addressing specific factors.
Based on cognitive behavioral therapy, it helps address some of the physical symptoms of depression such as energy, diet, and sleep. Fortunately, this is a free app, although only available on Android devices.
This woman-based app focuses on more marginalized members of the community. The main focus aims to help women "rest, heal, and grow through difficulty." It focuses greatly on self-improvement, offering a community to connect with other members who experience similar issues.
They provide medications, a gratitude journal, a daily move tracker, and topics that deal with anxiety, burnout, stress, acceptance, productivity, mindfulness, forgiveness, and many other issues women face.
For people who have thoughts of suicide, MY3 is an app designed to help you stay safe while experiencing your thoughts. It helps you put together a personal safety plan, helping you monitor your warning signs, outreach, and notice triggers.
It can also put you in touch with a trained counselor 24-hours a day, 7-days a week from the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. It also can automatically connect with certain people if you're experiencing a severe crisis.
The app Twenty-Four Hours A Day is based on a book of the same name that offers various meditations and advice for people who deal with addiction issues. While mostly focused on sobriety, it can be used for many other problems, including drugs, gambling, internet, and other types of addiction.
If you are one of the people that compulsively does repeated actions, this app can help you monitor the severity of your OCD and get advice and guidance if you find your symptoms increasing. This is a free app, although only available on Apple devices.
Specifically for stress, this app helps users walk through a series of breathing exercises that focus specifically on stress, anger control, and anxiety.
This specific app is gaining use in the mental health community because of its easy adaptability to many treatment plans. It works best in conjunction with in-person therapy. However, for many people, it can be used on its own. Fortunately, this is a free app for all devices.
If you're feeling a little lost, depressed, or experiencing a lot of stress or anxiety, we encourage you to check out some of these apps. And conjunction with therapy, they can give you the boost you need to get through some of your own life problems. And, even for people who are not experiencing those issues, some of the general mood tracking and happiness apps can keep you feeling good. None of the apps are a replacement for therapy but can be a big benefit to your life.