Taking care of mental health is just as important as taking care of physical well-being, and requires active effort on both sides of the table. For mental health providers, it’s vital to emphasize personal accountability to keep patients in healthy routines. Thanks to modern technology, it’s becoming easier to assist patients, allowing them to stay on track and ultimately become their own mental health advocates. It’s been historically difficult to assist and engage with patients struggling with mental health in between visits. However, modern technology is making it easier to enable individuals in your care to live better, happier lives. There may be challenges in providing mental health treatment, but new tools furnish new solutions.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to mental health.
Each patient is different. And to make matters more difficult, the lines between conditions are often blurred. New research—along with refined processes and modern tech—gives professionals the ability to better diagnose and treat patients, yet it’s still a tricky process. This is why the DSM manual has undergone several revisions since 1952 as we continually learn more about the connection between the mind and body. Despite the many guidelines and categorizations that come along with any health field, treating individuals always requires customization. Often it’s a trial and error process, requiring lots of tweaking to personalize regimens just right. This is even truer in mental health—different life experiences and cultures shape maladaptive behavioral patterns, so each diagnosis has to be treated differently. And even with proper medication, no pill in your arsenal is ever a cure-all.
Discussions about behavior during visits are helpful to gain insight, but there is typically some margin of error with patient accounts of recent events. Their memory can be heavily influenced by too much (or too little) emotion, so their accounts of events between visits vary in accuracy. With new legislation that backs HIPAA-compliant telehealth, providers can better monitor and interact with their patients. It’s one step towards allowing providers a more accurate look into each patient’s issues, which could vastly improve personalization for treatment regimens.
Technology can help patients connect to professionals.
When reinforcement of personal advocacy is aided by technology, a 90% increase in healthy behavior is reported in mental health patients. Healthcare tech designed specifically for mental health allows patients to track changes and gain new insight, which also helps providers deliver better treatment. Part of the process is creating a sense of self-awareness, where fostering this clarity produces positive action. By seeing results in any personal improvement routine, individuals exhibit increased motivation and significant gains. Journaling is still a great way for patients to assist providers with detailing thoughts, and it’s therapeutic for those who enjoy it. Modern health technology takes this a few steps further by providing other healthy alternatives to just keeping a log. Tech that provides the capabilities to alleviate or simply see elements of your health status proves to be highly effective in helping users remain accountable.
Software and medical peripheral interfaces can provide additional insight by reading biometric data that people can’t find on their own. This is coupled with qualitative information provided by the patient, and the two sets of data form more accurate profiles of an individual’s mental health and helps professionals to make improvements to treatment plans.
Teaching patients to advocate for themselves
When treatment is truly a collaborative process, patients are far more likely to sustain healthy lifestyles. An individual can’t feel like their relationship with a provider is that of authority and subordinate. Some will reject advice or experience too much shame should a falter occur with treatment. Great leaders inspire others to adopt leadership qualities—with mental healthcare, this means encouraging self-advocacy in treatment.
Mental health treatment is never a one-visit situation as an illness or injury might be: it’s a lifelong journey. Developing an effective feedback cycle for people living with mental health conditions allows them to actively participate in their own care regimen. It inherently reinforces accountability and it establishes a baseline for improving self-esteem. This is key for providers as it facilitates more effective treatment by taking into account the individual’s frame of mind. For more information about patient health engagement, check out this post from Positive Psychology about how patients can acknowledge and take control of their emotions to create authentic, happier lives.
Being equipped with facts and confidence to contribute to their own treatment is invaluable for patients’ success in managing their conditions. Those equipped with modern tech tools have a far greater chance at getting there, compared to less-involved treatment processes. Systems that securely transfer information between doctors and patients are proving to be among the most successful advances in recent medical history. Coupling recognized methods for teaching people to become self-advocates with modern technology provides a well-connected system for mental healthcare.
Patients, professionals, and technology coming together.
Mental healthcare is evolving just like every other industry—the only element that hasn’t changed is the dedication to improving lives. Holistic treatments are proving useful in just about every kind of medical treatment, and mental health is no exception. Systems that make patients more accountable helps transform them into successful self-advocates.
NeuroFlow has helped thousands of individuals better cope with their behavioral illness and lead better lives. In a review of 1,300+ patients using NeuroFlow over 4 months, 71% of patients reported a reduction in anxiety or depression symptoms. Our platform provides valuable insight for professionals and creates an effective management system for self-advocacy.
We can provide you with innovative tools to improve communication, track changes, and to develop a deeper understanding of what a patient needs. This allows them to take an active role in their treatment.
Contact us today for more information!