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article imageNew app aims to make CBT more accessible to people

By Tim Sandle     Jul 17, 2019 in Health
A startup called Quirk has developed an app designed to make Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) more accessible to people, aiding those who suffer from anxiety or depression.
Quirk has been developed to aid people in running CBT exercises. These are based on the triple column technique, which not only contrasts negative thoughts with positive ones, it also identifies so-termed cognitive errors — problematic thinking patterns that are irrational.
Quirk's product is one of several new apps that have been designed to help to address mental health issues. There are an array of apps for everyday life, covering anything from shopping, to entertainment, to travel, but using them to look after wellbeing and mental health is a relatively new concept.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a type of psycho-social intervention designed to improve an individual's mental health. The aim is to challenge unhelpful cognitive distortions, which can be a mix of thoughts, beliefs, attitudes and behaviors, and to develop personal coping strategies.
The Quirk app works by having the user activate the software whenever they experience anxiety or a depressive thought. This thought or feeling is then recorded. The user then works through a series of steps which tease out the distortions linked to a particular thought or feeling. This then allows the user to challenge the thought with the aim of presenting the thought as something illogical. The end stage is to switch out the thought with something more reasonable.
Speaking with TechCrunch, the company's CEO and founder Evan Conrad says: “CBT has 40 years of research behind it. I’ve had severe panic attacks my whole life and saw different therapists who tried what I now know is CBT. I assumed it was a pseudo science. It wasn’t until 10 months ago that I re-discovered CBT on my own and learned about its efficacy. It’s the gold standard.”
The app aims to partly replace the CBT process without the need for a user to seek guidance from a qualified medical professional. It should be noted that such an app can only go part way and people are advised to seek professional medical advice where appropriate.
More about quirk, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Therapy, Psychology
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