A significant amount of the time spent in therapy is often dedicated to discussing various strategies clients can use to address different concerns. These tools can help improve mindfulness, promote relaxation, track behaviors, and help with numerous other issues. At times, clients mention that it can be difficult to keep track of these strategies between sessions. Mental health apps can be effective supplements to therapy that enable users to practice exercises learned in therapy and allow for convenient and easy access to these tools. They are also useful those not engaged in therapy but want to improve certain areas of their lives. Listed below are 6 apps that are free to use and are recommended by users and therapists.
- MindShift focuses on helping users manage a variety of anxiety symptoms and is geared toward teens and adults. It includes a list of coping strategies to use in the moment and users can save ones that are useful to them; these can be personalized based on the type of anxiety clients experience. This app also assists users in challenging and unrealistic thoughts and promotes a more-balanced thought-process.
- CBT Though Record Diary nicely complements clients practicing CBT in their therapy sessions. It helps users document negative or unrealistic thoughts, identify cognitive distortions, and demonstrate more adaptive thinking.
- Breath2Relax is a user-friendly app tailored to teens and adults that aids users in learning and practicing breathing techniques in order to reduce stress or other unpleasant emotions. It offers video examples and tracking of one’s progress.
- The Happy Child-Parenting App provides practical and understandable tools to parents to enable them to improve relationships with their children. Parents are able to access research-based information to gain insight into their child’s behaviors and are also given solutions to address behavioral issues.
- Let’s Medicate: Sleep and Guided Meditation allows users to view guided medications that help them relax and/or sleep. There is a search feature that enables users to specify what they are looking for and you can even download them so you always have access to ones that you like.
- Daylio is a mood tracker and journal in one- with a unique twist! Targeting teens and young adults this app uses emojis and icons to help log your mood and activities daily, creating a picture-oriented journal (you also have the option of using a more traditional approach).