Healthcare Technology Featured Article

September 25, 2019

How the internet now helps you with your mental health

We hear a lot about the negative impact of new technologies on our health. Who hasn't heard about the link between video games and violence or how social media boosts narcissisim?  However, the Internet and other modern technologies are not wholly negative and can have a positive impact on our mental health as well. Websites like, for example, provide a direct source of support, while others offer resources, opportunities, and other things that can boost our emotional and psychological well-being. Let's take a look at three ways in which the Internet can support our mental health.

  • Greater access to mental health services

The first thing that the Internet can do for us is connect us with mental health specialists and support services no matter where we are. People in rural areas, low-income zones, isolated spaces, or those who have immigrated might have trouble accessing high-quality mental health services or finding specialists who work with their particular issue. A migrant, for example, might struggle due to language barriers that can prevent them from taking advantage of therapeutic services in the country they have moved to. Through Skype therapy and other services, it's possible for a person to connect with a specialist anywhere and have access to the services they need.

  • Resources of all kinds

The Internet is an endless source of information. We can access to a wide variety of resources and apps that can support our mental health. This includes reliable and evidence-based information about mental health disorders and the best practices to reduce them, communities that connect people with similar issues through digital means, apps that help develop and implement mental health support strategies (like meditation, gratitude, exercise, and others). The access that we have today to all these resources is unprecented and provides many opportunities for people to enhance their well-being using the wide variety of tools that the Internet provides. One can think about the wide variety of apps that target mental health and are designed using evidence-based practices, for example, to help a person feel less depressed or challenge their anxiety or learn meditation.

  • Consistent access

The Internet provides consistent access to resources, services, and also to other things that can be beneficial for mental health. Individuals always have the option to reach out to friends or find someone to talk to, they can always access calming or distracting content, and they can always find something that can support them online. Sure, the Internet is also full of upsetting or harmful content but if one can effectively curate their experience, they can construct something that supports them. For example, many people find online communities that are an additional source of social support. While online games have been much maligned in the media, they might also serve as an important way of having positive experiences and emotions that can be relaxing and distracting for the individual.

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