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Gambling, Gaming & Technology Use Community of Interest

The Gambling, Gaming & Technology Use Community of Interest brings together addiction and mental health service providers, researchers and subject matter experts in the fields of gambling, technology/Internet use and video gaming to collaborate and share knowledge on emerging trends and clinical best practices.

In a TED Ideas piece that came out late last year, author Chris Dancy discusses how technology has helped him deal with his depression and anxiety. He uses technology to:

  • log his physical symptoms, mental health symptoms, feelings, thoughts, and behaviours during a panic attack or depressive episode and then reflects on these digital logs as a way to know what to expect and that he can make it through 
  • watch videos of others with similar struggles so he doesn't feel alone
  • track his app usage and how this relates to his mood to know the "happy apps" that he can turn to when he is feeling low.

I think some of these tips, including bringing awareness to thoughts/feelings/behaviours and how this relates to technology use, can be helpful. However, using technology may also be harmful for people who may be using it as an escape or distraction from negative feelings.

What are your thoughts on the role that technology plays in mental health?

Original Post

Whether it is to temporarily distract from the overwhelming feelings or to learn more about strategies that work, it seems the best use of technology when one tries to find help from available resources in absence of another instantly available professional help. In practice, I often suggest the clients take the help of YouTube videos for guided meditation, positive affirmations, etc.


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