10 Things Clinicians Need to Know about Anxiety Canada’s MindShift CBT App
If you have not checked out Anxiety Canada’s new MindShift CBT app, there is no time like the present. The MindShift CBT app uses Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) strategies to help people learn more effective ways to manage their anxiety.
Interactive and intuitive, the MindShift CBT app is designed so that individuals can figure out and use the app on their own. In the day of long waitlists, recommending this app can help bridge the gaps between problem onset, assessment and treatment for your clients with mild to moderate anxiety problems.
Clinicians can also use MindShift CBT to complement psychotherapy. Clients can set, complete, and share a variety of key CBT exercises as well as anxiety ratings with their therapists.
Sound good? Want to know more? Here are 10 things clinicians need to know about the new MindShift CBT app.
1. MindShift CBT is based on scientific evidence. The team that translated the knowledge to create the evidence-based app included scientific and clinical experts in the area of anxiety as well as people with lived experience of anxiety and technology professionals. This is a great start but Anxiety Canada is not done yet – research on the app itself is in the works. Stay tuned.
2. MindShift CBT’s psychoeducational tools help people better understand what is happening in their body, mind and behaviours. The Learn feature includes general information about anxiety and CBT. There are also special sections on Worry, Social Anxiety, Perfectionism, Panic and Phobias.
3. The Healthy Thinking Tools section includes classic cognitive strategies such as Thought Journals, Belief Experiments, and Coping Cards. Gone are the days of sending clients home with thought records and cue cards that might easily get lost or be awkward to pull out and use. Now using a Coping Card is as easy as checking your mobile device and completing a Thought Record is as simple as sending a text.
4. The Taking Action tools area includes behavioural strategies such as Facing Fears, which uses Fear Ladders (exposure hierarchies) to help people gradually approach targets in small manageable steps. The Expanding Your Comfort Zone feature guides clients to consistently do new and challenging things, thereby reducing avoidance and building confidence.
5. The Goal Setting feature provides tips for defining goals. It gives reminders 3 days before and again on the target completion date. This feature is great for setting between-session activities.
6. Anxiety, stress and arousal are not dangerous and can’t be eliminated from life. But there are times when it’s helpful to take the edge off. The Chill Zone has audio recordings of guided relaxation and mindfulness meditations. The Quick Relief feature is helpful for those times when people feel overwhelmed and stuck – it includes multiple options such as taking a breath, grounding, shifting thinking, and taking steps to cope.
7. There are multiple determinants of good health. Having positive habits can provide a solid foundation for managing anxiety. The Healthy Habits section provides tips on sleep, nutrition, physical activity, fun, social connection and valued activities.
8. The Check In feature allows people to track their anxiety with numerical ratings and journal entries. MindShift CBT graphs the results, which users can share with their clinician.
9. The Share feature allows people to export any or all of the following: “Thought Journals”, “Belief Experiments”, “Comfort Zone Challenges”, “Facing Fears”, “Goals” and “Check-Ins”. Users can choose to export only one item or multiple items. A single record or multiple records over a period of time can be shared. Anxiety Canada takes privacy seriously. No sketchy stuff. Learn more here.