Are Mental Health Apps Helpful?

Playing The Latest in Mental Health Trends

The Doctors welcome psychiatrist Dr. Ish Major to weigh in on some of the top mental health trends including the use of apps to deal with mental illness.

Dr. Major says, "We're tied to the tech. We let it deliver our dating, we let it deliver our dining, and so we might as well let it help deliver us from depression, but you've got to make sure it is being done the right way."

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The psychiatrist says he likes the app that allows someone to text with a therapist at any time of the day or night. He explains that the user gets to select their therapist, who monitors your messages and responds at least 2 times per day.

As for the app that connects people who are dealing with similar issues for peer-to-peer support, Dr. Major feels that these are good in theory, but not in practice. He says he worries about that people in these groups might only bond over their pain, which he feels could be unhealthy, especially if the group is focused on depression.

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Dr. Major also says he does not like the app that uses artificial intelligence and links to your Facebook account to track one's mental health. He questions how artificial intelligence can successfully treat depression via social media. He also notes that for many, social media can make depression worse and says he would not want to see a patient have to use it for treatment.