Mental health is incredibly important to living your best life since it impacts your thoughts, behaviours, and emotions.
When it comes to mental health issues in Canada, the numbers are staggering. According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, in any given year, 1 in 5 people will personally experience a mental health problem or illness.1
Unlike other conditions, the segments of the population affected by mental illness are not clearly defined; it affects people of all ages, education, income levels, and cultures. Whether it’s a family member, friend or colleague, mental illness indirectly affects all Canadians at some point in their lives.
You may be wondering what you can do to improve or protect your mental health.
An increasingly popular way to take care of your brain is by using apps designed to support and improve mental well-being. That’s why we’re sharing the best apps to use and the unique benefits they offer to create a healthy brain!
Here are some of the benefits of mental health apps:
- Conveniently right in your pocket when you need it
- Inexpensive compared to other types of support (free or premium tiers)
- Have diverse approaches to improving mental health (experiment to find your perfect fit)
Ready to train your brain? Here are seven of the best mental health apps to try in 2021:
Who is it for? Anyone can benefit from using the Headspace app.
How it works: Headspace offers users meditation sessions and well-being courses, allowing you to map your journey and track your progress along the way!
Unique benefit: Unlike other meditation apps, Headspace offers short meditations for people on the go. If you don’t have a lot of time to dedicate to mindfulness, you can always choose pockets of your day that work for you and incorporate a quick session. There are also meditation features to help users improve the quality of their sleep.
Who is it for? The Rootd app is targeted towards people who experience anxiety and panic attacks.
How it works: The Rootd app uses body scan visualization to control your breathing and mental state. There are short term and long-term lessons to better understand your anxiety or panic attacks.
Unique benefit: The app has a big red “panic button” feature which can be pressed to provide users with tools to cope with anxiety or panic attacks while they’re experiencing one.
Who is it for? Anyone can benefit from the Moodfit app, but it can be especially beneficial for seniors.
How it works: This all-in-one app combines a variety of tools to track goals, manage medications, access cognitive-behavioral therapy, practice gratitude, and more. Enjoy all these benefits within a single app.
Unique benefit: This app provides detailed data trends to give insight on exactly how your mood patterns have changed over time. Understanding these changes can aid you in discovering triggers that consistently lift your mood, helping improve your overall mental wellness.
Who is it for? Anyone can benefit from using the Happify app.
How it works: Through games and activities, this app uses positive psychology, cognitive behavioral therapy, and mindfulness to improve overall wellbeing and happiness.
Unique benefit: The Happify app gamifies its activities, making it fun to improve your mental health. It includes bite-size quizzes, games and activities which are evidence-based to help users overcome life’s challenges.
Who is it for? Anyone can benefit from using the TalkSpace app.
How it works: TalkSpace offers online therapy sessions by pairing users with a licensed therapist specializing in depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other mental health issues. There is usually a cost associated with using this service and there is no free option.
Unique benefit: The TalkSpace app gives you 24/7 access to licensed professionals at a significantly lower cost than traditional, in-person therapy. Enjoy flexible scheduling and plans that work for your lifestyle. Seamlessly switch therapists to find the right match for you.
6. WHO Academy’s mobile learning app
Who is it for? Frontline workers can benefit from using this app.
How it works: This app delivers mobile access to a wealth of COVID-19 knowledge resources developed by the World Health Organization (WHO). These include up-to-the-minute guidance, tools, training, and virtual workshops to support health workers in caring for patients infected by COVID-19 and in protecting themselves as they do their critical work.
Unique benefit: During this stressful and uncertain time, this app can provide up to date information to ease anxieties around the coronavirus for vulnerable populations like frontline workers. The app was designed to enable workers to expand their life-saving skills to battle COVID-19.
7. FOCUS on the Go
Who is it for? Kids and families can benefit from using the FOCUS on the Go app.
How it works: This app includes a suite of games with fun, woodland characters which help kids understand feeling words, problem solving, and telling their story. It uses the family resilience model to help families tackle mental health together.
Unique benefit: FOCUS on the Go is an app your whole family can use together to stay connected and prepare for anything that may affect mental health. Talking to kids about the importance of mental health and communicating your emotions can be challenging for many parents. This app aims to make the process easier by giving parents and children the language and tools they need to make mental health a part of regular discussions.
Looking for more wellness tips for the new year? Check out Porch.com’s Best Healthy Habits To Practice At Home.