In the news: VR Therapy for depression and anxiety

Pixana, a virtual reality (VR) solutions provider, and Limbix, a company that uses VR therapy in healthcare announced they’re teaming up to develop interactive VR therapy to help teens better understand and cope with depression and anxiety. 

Working with Harvard University researchers and Stony Brook University they plan to develop VR scenes to help teenagers work through emotions and stressful situations in a safe place. 

VR Intervention for depression
A behind these scene look at a project built to deliver mind set training to adolescents with depression.

At the root of this idea is Growth Mindset Training, the belief that neither intelligence or personality are fixed mindsets. Just as academic success can change, so too can personality traits like sadness, shyness or likability.

For kids and teenagers, a growth mindset has been shown to have a powerful impact on their psychological recovery from socially stressful situations. 

If schools can intervene early to help students develop growth mindsets, they could improve students abilities to cope with stress and reduce anxiety. 

You can read more about mindsets and mental health, and growth mindset parenting here.

In the news: Apple introduces tools to limit screen time

In July 2018, Apple introduced tools to monitor and limit screen time as part of the iOS 12 update.

(To be fair, so, too, did Google on their Android P system, but we’re a family of Apple users.)

If you read my  post on smartphones, you’ll know I struggle with restricting my kids’ screen time. And you’ll know that I believe unchecked smartphone use, and in particular Snapchat, played a role in my daughter’s depression.

Which is why, when a tech company does something that might help us be more mindful of our digital habits, I rejoice. Even if Screen Time is providing Apple with incredible amounts of data about how I, and my kids, spend literally every minute of our days.

If you haven’t heard of Screen Time, or like me are slow to update your phone’s software, here’s the quick and dirty. For a full step by step guide on how to set it all up, check out this article from Tom’s Guide.

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