22 Apps That Help Our Mental Health

Although we love our phones, many of us find them a source of stress. Scrolling through insta-perfect images can impact on our self-esteem, and constant notifications are overwhelming and tiring.

However, our phones can also be super self-care tools. There are lots of apps out there designed to help us manage our mental health. In a past post, we found 21 apps that help with well-being, and in this post we share 22 more – with reviews gathered from our Peer Support Group, and the wonderful world wide web.

Apps that Help our Mental Health

Balanced

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free for basic app, £3.99 for upgrade

Such optimistic words; reminds you to help yourself rather than just check things off a meaningless list.

Using Balanced is like having a little person in my phone that acknowledges what I’m doing – A little record witnessing and encouraging.

Balanced helps with staying in control, knowing what to do next, becoming more mindful, finding inspiration, and leading a happier, more fulfilling life.

Booster Buddy

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free

I‘ve used booster buddy and I find it quite good for motivating me to do small things to distract me or to improve my mood when I’m feeling low in the morning.

I’ve been using Booster Buddy for a few weeks and I quite like it, especially that the tasks depend on how you’re feeling, so if you’re feeling awful it will just be something small like ‘put one item of rubbish in the bin’. It makes you feel like you have actually achieved something, however small.

Booster Buddy gives us a virtual animal friend to help manage your mental health. Each day, you check-in with how you’re feeling, and then complete a number of daily ‘quests’. It can be used to help keep track of appointments and medications, get started on tasks, develop healthy coping skills, follow self-care routines, and socialise.

Breathe2Relax

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free

Fantastic, I use it regularly… Being able to personalise inhilation/exhalation times makes it good.

Absolutely brilliant, I use this app when I’m having anxiety attacks and it works brilliantly, calms you right down!

Breathe2Relax is a stress management tool. It provides detailed information on the effects of stress on the body, and  instructions and practice exercises to help users learn to manage stress using diaphragmatic breathing.

Calm Harm

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free

I find it really useful especially the surf the urge option.

It has a breathing countdown feature that helps you focus on breathing that I use sometimes. Also has features that can distract you.

Calm Harm is designed to help us resist and manage the urge to self-harm, containing four types of activity: distract, comfort, express and release. It stems from ideas involved in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT).

Daylio

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free for the basic app, £2.99 for premium app

Brilliant. Everything a tracker app needs. Daily reminders, activity edits, simple mood tracking. Helps you figure out what your poor mental health triggers are. You can edit the things you’ve been doing & there’s loads of icons to choose from.

Daylio can help you to understand your habits and factors that might influence your mood. You can keep a private diary selecting your mood and activities you’ve been doing during the day. You can also add notes if you want to. It will then provide you with statistics and calendars to help you identify your habits.

Flow Free

Available: iOS, Android, Amazon
Cost: Free for basic app, various costs for app additions

I love flow free for distraction. And you can just pick a level to match how well your brain is working.

Flow free is a very relaxed game where you connect matching dots with coloured pipe. It can be used to chill out a little bit, or to distract from scary thoughts.

Happy Healthy

Available: iOS
Cost: Free

Easy to use and input data and see how you are progressing day by day, with great advice on improving certain areas.

This app allows you to rate ourselves on lifestyle, exercise, nutrition and sleep, which can begin to show you any patterns in things that might influence your mood.

Hear and Now

Available: iOS
Cost: Free for basic app, £3.99 or £25.49 to upgrade to pro

I find Hear and Now really good. I’m really busy at work during the day and I get random notifications from it to stop and breathe to help me relax. It helps to reduce my anxiety and stress levels.

Hear and Now is designed to help with stress. It teaches clinically proven deep breathing techniques. You can set reminders to quickly regain focus. It can also provide an overview of your breathing exercise history in order to monitor patterns and improvements.

Insight Timer

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free for basic app, £1.99, £1.99, £2.99 for collection additions

Great little app with a simple easy to use interface. There is a selection of guided meditations to choose from but the app really shines with the simplicity of the timer. It also fosters a sense that there is a community out there meditating with you.

Insight Timer is a meditation app, containing 4500 free guided meditations, 750 meditation music tracks, and 35 meditation playlists. It also has 4300 groups where people can come and discuss topics ranging from humour and compassion to spirituality and support.

MindShift

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free

If you are suffering with anxiety, this is a great app to help yourself. As a mental health practitioner I recommend this to my patients and would recommend this for everyone!

MindShift is designed to help you cope with anxiety. It includes strategies for making sleep count, riding out intense emotions, perfectionism, test anxiety, social anxiety, performance anxiety, worry, panic, and conflict.

Hug in a box

Moodfit

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free

It has very nice messages for you to motivate you and help you. Very helpful.

This app is good for keeping track of your moods and provides a clear vision of the pattern of your moods.

Moodfit is a companion to help you achieve your goals. Track your mood, to see what can cause it to lift and drop. Understand how sleep and exercise affect you, practice gratitude, get your zen on, and understand medications and therapy.

Moodnotes

Available: iOS
Cost: £3.99

I would highly recommend for checking in with feelings and noting positive achievements.

With Moodnotes, you record how we feel each day and Moodnotes responds with gentle encouragement, poses questions, and shows us patterns. It also highlights possible thought traps we might fall into.

MoodTools

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free, with optional donations of £4.99 and £19.99

I found this app at a very low point in my life and it has lifted my mood significantly in a very short space of time. I feel as if I have some control back and can see a light at the end of the tunnel.

MoodTools contains six evidence-based tools to aid against clinical depression and negative moods. It contains information on depression, a depression test, videos, a thought diary, activities, and a safety plan.

Omvana

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free for basic app, various costs for app additions

Great experience whether you’re a beginner or an expert, there is something for everyone.

Omvana provides meditation tracks for focus, sleep, peace and more. It can be great for relaxing and practising meditation and mindfulness.

Pacifica

Available: iOS, Android, Web
Cost: Free for basic app, various costs for app purchases

I’m a big fan of the Pacifica app. It’s the only app I’ve seen that takes an holistic look at someone’s emotional well-being. Not only does it have all the basics to help people with their thinking, it can also be used to record and monitor other important information such as exercise, water intake and sleep. It’s useful tool while someone is in treatment and  for relapse prevention.

Pacifica is based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and meditation. It contains daily tools for managing stress and anxiety alongside a supportive community. The tools include guided self-help paths, mood/health tracking, challenges to help you reach your long-term goals, relaxation techniques and a peer-support community. It allows you to see our progress over time, make connections, and recognise patters we might fall into.

Panic Shield

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free

Panic shield is great for if you want to map your own step ladders of graded exposure, it also has exercises to help you combat the fear of physical signs of anxiety.

Panic Shield can help to train your minds not to be afraid by the sensations you typically associate with panic attacks, and not to fear external situations or activities that you avoid in case they trigger a panic attack. It also contains a paced breathing tool which can help you to calm down when you begin to feel particularly anxious.

Peak

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free for basic app, various costs for app additions

Every morning I wake up and complete the 15 minute brain ‘workout’ peak create for me and at the end of those 15 minutes. I already feel like I’ve achieved something positive- especially when I beat my highest scores!

Peak is a brain training app. Each day, you complete a couple of short games to challenge and stretch different areas of your brain, including focus, memory, problem solving, and mental agility. The app shows us how we’re improving, and how we compare to other players.

Penzu

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free for basic app, various costs for app additions

This is a great little app if you want to keep a digital diary or journal. It’ intuitive and easy to use and can be as visual or simple as you want.

Penzu is a place to keep our private thoughts safe and secure. You can journal, customise your journal cover, and add photos.

Sleep Cycle

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free for basic app, various costs for app additions

Sleep Cycle is great – helps me to understand why I’m feeling tired, and uses data it gathers so you can see what affects your sleep.

I used sleep cycle last night for the first time had the best nights sleep I’ve had in nearly a week a lot more relaxed, no vivid dreams and I woke up on time in a fairly decent mood.

Sleep Cycle tracks your sleep and wakes you up during the lightest part of your sleep cycle, which can help you to feel better rested. It can also track your sleep during the night which can allow you to see how well you’re sleeping, and where any problems might lie.

Stay Alive

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free

What a great app, long overdue, if you are feeling in that dark place this app may just help you to feel able to choose life and find reasons for living.

Amazing app for help and advice for those struggling with suicidal thoughts of advice if you’re worried about someone.

Stay Alive is designed to support both people with thoughts of suicide and to people concerned about someone else. It has quick access to UK national crisis support helplines. You can use it to create a mini safety plan, and it contains a LifeBox for photos reminding you of your reasons to stay alive. It also contains strategies for keeping safe, information of helping a person thinking about suicide, suicide myth-busting, research-based reasons for living, suicide bereavement resources, and links to online support services and to other helpful apps.

ThisIsSand

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free for basic app, various costs for app additions

I love this game – it makes me feel relaxed when I play it. I love all the different colours you can get.

ThisIsSand is a relaxing app which allows us to make sandscapes. It’s good for chilling out and being a little creative in really simple way.

What’s Up?

Available: iOS, Android
Cost: Free (can donate £0.99, £1.99, or £3.99)

What’s Up? Is really the only mental health app I use, it’s helpful in many situations and I honestly cannot recommend it enough! It is divided into four sections: – Help Right Now – Coping Strategies – Information – Personal Overall, I really find this app so helpful when in stressful, highly emotionally charged situations and also generally just for reference or information or to write notes and keep track of habits. I find the grounding techniques section most helpful.

What’s Up? uses Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and Acceptance Commitment Therapy (ACT) methods to help us to cope with depression, anxiety, anger and stress.

A Final Note on Apps

While these apps can help us help ourselves, no app is a replacement for medical help.  If we’re struggling, getting support from our GP or mental health team should always be our first priority.

Sharing is caring: please share this post to help others, you never know who might need it.