Mobile mental health

Some mobile apps can supplement suicide counseling to reduce feelings of isolation
Some mobile apps can supplement suicide counseling to reduce feelings of isolation.

Several mobile apps exist to help workers track their mental and physical health and identify patterns that could help them understand their moods better.

Dr. Sally Spencer-Thomas warned that some are more helpful than others, but what’s most important is if it works for the individual. “Technology moves incredibly fast and science moves incredibly slow,” she noted. Here are some apps recommended by Dr. Sally Spencer-Thomas and, a multi-agency suicide prevention campaign targeting working-age men. Each of these apps are available for Apple and Android devices.

T2 Mood Tracker: Originally created by the Department of Defense to help servicemembers returning from combat, this app is available to anyone and lets users track changes in mood based on head injury or PTSD as well as anxiety, depression and stress.

Virtual Hope Box: Another app that sprung from the Defense Health Agency, the Virtual Hope Box visualizes a box into which people can put all their reasons for living: pictures of their kids, recordings of loved ones, religious passages or songs.

MY3: Users can add the contact information for three people who can talk them through thoughts of suicide. The app helps users create a personal safety plan that includes personal warning signs and coping strategies designed for vulnerable groups like veterans or LGBTQ people. Critically, it also connects people to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline or 911 when they need it.

[Related: A risky business—Examining suicide in construction]

Correction: T2 Mood Tracker and Virtual Hope Box are only available for iOS devices. 

Danielle Andrus

Danielle Andrus was previously the managing editor for Colorado Builder, and is currently Editor for the Journal of Financial Planning.

Danielle Andrus has 341 posts and counting. See all posts by Danielle Andrus

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