The Role Of Technology In Behavioral Health’s Enhancement
Behavioral health disorders are on the rise and now considered as a significant source of disability and distress. According to statistics, an estimated 26 percent of individuals all over the world, ages 18 years and older, suffer from these kinds of disorders. It is majorly composed of mental health illnesses and substance abuse often. With that in mind, people use more and more technological initiatives as a strategy for behavioral health’s advancement.
These technology-based interventions have the potential to improve the effective assessment and treatment of the said behavioral disorders. Listed below are some of the significant roles of technology when it comes to the procedure in behavioral health.
Mobile Technologies In Clinical Practices
Passive And Active Assessment Tools
Many devices are now in clinics which are designed to measure, monitor easily, and assess the various symptoms by health measures. These devices significantly improve the convenience and accuracy of data collection in this field. For example, these assessment tools gather the data on the depth of anxiety, levels of alcohol intake, physical movement patterns, biometrics, and many other more.
The development and improvement of smart wearables all over the world are on the rise. These wearables are used to diagnose, easily access information, and provide interactive treatments on any behavioral disorder. These are created to be able to minimize costly and time-consuming physical office visits.
At the same time, these intelligent wearables are also capable of detecting different health issues at an early stage. They are also helpful in responding to health cases which require urgent medical attention.
Some examples of these intelligent wearables include blood pressure and glucose readers, electroencephalograms (EEGs), and electrodermal activity devices (EDAs)
Social Support And Peer Services
Social support and peer services are probably the most visible kind of digital support out there. Social support via the internet is often the topic studied by researchers in the behavioral health field. It serves as an avenue which provides new opportunities for convenient connections and additional social engagement. Now that almost everyone has their social media accounts and their smartphones, they can easily visit different sites depending on their needs.
The presence of the most famous social media platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter, has developed an open space for individuals to receive social support any time of the day and wherever they are. Some websites have created their health and wellness networks where people can come together online to talk. The creators also included a part where visitors can access information on behavioral health issues developed by professional doctors and clinical experts.
Although Virtual Reality (VR) is a relatively new and complicated field, the progress in this area is fast and is starting to have a massive impact in the field of behavioral health. An example here is the use of VR headsets. These VR headsets used as a tool to recreate personal triggers for those individuals who are experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder. It is a way for them to receive coping techniques in their own home – away from the therapist’s office.
Having this in a safe and more comfortable space helps them feel more at ease when receiving their treatments.
Believe it or not, there is a mobile application for anything these days. From banking apps, social media apps, productivity tools, shopping lists, and weather forecasting. Behavioral health apps, however, have been taken for granted. Around the year 2009, the very first apps in this field came to life. Throughout the years, more and more apps developed in this are.
Usually, these kinds of behavioral apps focus on four key areas – mood, behavior, stress, and anxiety. These typically are their focus areas as a way to target the emotional aspect caused by behavioral health disorders.
What makes mobile applications useful is their portability especially for the younger generations who are usually on their mobile phones every single day. Using the apps becomes a no-brainer even for non-tech-savvy individuals.
These technological innovations may be helpful but are not a cure for everything. Nevertheless, these innovations still address some behavioral health disorders and help patients who cannot obtain treatment as well. Hopefully, these innovations will keep evolving to be able to improve accessibility.