Psychiatric science continues to evolve as there is a growing need to address mental health problems since the start of the pandemic. According to the World Health Organization, the health crisis has caused a massive 25% increase in the prevalence of depression and anxiety.
Alongside the means to develop herd immunity, mental health experts are also looking to provide more sophisticated tools and methods for detecting and treating mental illness.
Here’s a shortlist of the developments in psychiatric science that matter this year.
Drawing the line on social media usage
Social media seems to offer the best escape from boredom. However, it can also be a cause of stress, depression, and anxiety.
While social media has become an intrinsic part of everyday life, mental health experts are encouraging people to limit their exposure to an unhealthy amount of content. According to HelpGuide.org, excessive social media use can lead to feelings of inadequacy and depression. Platforms like Facebook and Twitter can also be venues for cyberbullying.
Sure enough, these issues will only induce social media networks to implement more effective ways to limit emotionally disruptive content. In addition, they are also doing their part in connecting individuals with helplines and organizations. Facebook, for instance, has introduced a centralized resource center that offers guidance on mental health topics.
The conveniences of telehealth
The idea of therapy on the go led to the popularity of Telehealth in 2020. Sure enough, psychiatric clinics will still continue to invest in telehealth platforms as a means to provide immediate psychiatric interventions. In fact, a poll by the American Psychiatric Association found that 38% of American patients used telehealth services to connect with mental health professionals in the fall of 2020.
Telehealth offers a way for those who have to travel long distances or have mobility issues just to connect with a psychiatric professional. Using the right communication tools, patients can readily access resources, schedule consultations, and get immediate help.
Chronic pain VR programs
Virtual reality has come a long way. What started as a technology for leisure has now become an effective means to deal with chronic pain. A recent study found that VR technology has the potential in reducing chronic pain and delivering innovative behavioral pain treatments.
The concept seems simple enough. Patients can enter a real-time virtual world where they can learn how to respond to pain in their bodies. This therapy program will later help them know how to respond to stressful situations and pain.
AI improvements to therapy sessions
AI is always growing and evolving. It may even reach a point where it can help therapists conduct successful diagnostic and treatment sessions. In particular, therapists are using AI programs to better manage their workloads and deliver better experiences to clients.
Moreover, AI can also help patients observe self-care. Wearable devices can include AI programs that can track a person’s mood and recommend activities that can bring emotional relief. For mental health professionals, this development allows for a more accurate way to identify possible mental illnesses that could otherwise go under the radar.
Addressing trauma in healthcare
Trauma-informed care is a growing trend in psychiatric science. Many healthcare workers in the psychiatric field recognize that trauma may play a part in a patient’s life.
With this in mind, there is a growing need to track the long-term effects of trauma and how it relates to other conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, depression, and substance abuse.
The future is looking bright for psychiatric science as technology brings new ways to confront mental illnesses and conditions.
In any case, it’s still important to look for a psychiatric clinic that uses the latest tools and methods to help patients on the road to a fulfilling life.
Mid Cities Psychiatry is one such clinic that embraces innovation. Give us a call today and learn about the mental services we offer to the residents of Grapevine, TX.