The rapid growth in the use of mobile phone applications (apps) provides the opportunity to increase access to evidence-based mental health care.
With continued increases in smartphone ownership, researchers and clinicians are investigating the use of this technology to enhance the management of chronic illnesses such as bipolar disorder (BD). Smartphones can be used to deliver interventions and psychoeducation, supplement treatment, and enhance therapeutic reach in BD, as apps are cost-effective, accessible, anonymous, and convenient. While the evidence-based development of BD apps is in its infancy, there has been an explosion of publicly available apps. However, the opportunity for mHealth to assist in the self-management of BD is only feasible if apps are of appropriate quality.
Excessive use of smartphones has been associated with injuries.
BACKGROUND: There is increasing interest from academics and clinicians in harnessing smartphone applications (apps) as a means of delivering behavioral interventions for health. Despite the growing availability of a range of health-related apps on the market, academic research on the development and evaluation of such apps is in the relatively early stages. A few existing studies have explored the views of various populations on using mobile phones for health-related issues and some studies are beginning to report user feedback on specific apps. However, there remains little in depth research on users' (and potential users') experiences and views on a wide range of features and technologies that apps are, or will soon be, capable of. In particular, research on young adults is lacking, which is an unfortunate omission considering that this group comprises of a good number of mobile technology adoptors. OBJECTIVE: The current study sought to explore young adults' perspectives on apps related to health behavior change. It sought their experiences and views of features that might support health behavior change and issues that contribute to interest in and willingness to use such apps. METHODS: Four focus groups were conducted with 19 students and staff at a University in the United Kingdom. Participants included 13 females and 6 males with a mean age of 23.79 (SD 7.89). The focus group discussions centred on participants' experiences of using smartphone apps to support a healthy lifestyle, and their interest in and feelings about features and capabilities of such apps. The focus groups were recorded, transcribed, and analyzed using inductive thematic analysis. RESULTS: Study findings suggested that young, currently healthy adults have some interest in apps that attempt to support health-related behavior change. Accuracy and legitimacy, security, effort required, and immediate effects on mood emerged as important influences on app usage. The ability to record and track behavior and goals and the ability to acquire advice and information “on the go” were valued. Context-sensing capabilities and social media features tended to be considered unnecessary and off-putting. CONCLUSIONS: This study provided insight into the opportunities and challenges involved in delivering health-related behavioral interventions through smartphone apps. The findings suggested a number of valued features and characteristics that app developers may wish to consider when creating health behavior apps. Findings also highlighted several major challenges that appeared to need further consideration and research to ensure the development of effective and well-accepted behavior change apps.
Combining low-cost wireless EEG sensors with smartphones offers novel opportunities for mobile brain imaging in an everyday context. Here we present the technical details and validation of a framework for building multi-platform, portable EEG applications with real-time 3D source reconstruction. The system - Smartphone Brain Scanner - combines an off-the-shelf neuroheadset or EEG cap with a smartphone or tablet, and as such represents the first fully portable system for real-time 3D EEG imaging. We discuss the benefits and challenges, including technical limitations as well as details of real-time reconstruction of 3D images of brain activity. We present examples of brain activity captured in a simple experiment involving imagined finger tapping, which shows that the acquired signal in a relevant brain region is similar to that obtained with standard EEG lab equipment. Although the quality of the signal in a mobile solution using an off-the-shelf consumer neuroheadset is lower than the signal obtained using high-density standard EEG equipment, we propose mobile application development may offset the disadvantages and provide completely new opportunities for neuroimaging in natural settings.
Mobile phones have become nearly ubiquitous, offering a promising means to deliver health interventions. However, little is known about smartphone applications (apps) for cancer.
This study was designed to investigate the revised and short version of the smartphone addiction scale and the proof of its validity in adolescents. In addition, it suggested cutting off the values by gender in order to determine smartphone addiction and elaborate the characteristics of smartphone usage in adolescents.
Motor-training software on tablets or smartphones (Apps) offer a low-cost, widely-available solution to supplement arm physiotherapy after stroke. We assessed the proportions of hemiplegic stroke patients who, with their plegic hand, could meaningfully engage with mobile-gaming devices using a range of standard control-methods, as well as by using a novel wireless grip-controller, adapted for neurodisability. We screened all newly-diagnosed hemiplegic stroke patients presenting to a stroke centre over 6 months. Subjects were compared on their ability to control a tablet or smartphone cursor using: finger-swipe, tap, joystick, screen-tilt, and an adapted handgrip. Cursor control was graded as: no movement (0); less than full-range movement (1); full-range movement (2); directed movement (3). In total, we screened 345 patients, of which 87 satisfied recruitment criteria and completed testing. The commonest reason for exclusion was cognitive impairment. Using conventional controls, the proportion of patients able to direct cursor movement was 38-48%; and to move it full-range was 55-67% (controller comparison: p>0.1). By comparison, handgrip enabled directed control in 75%, and full-range movement in 93% (controller comparison: p<0.001). This difference between controllers was most apparent amongst severely-disabled subjects, with 0% achieving directed or full-range control with conventional controls, compared to 58% and 83% achieving these two levels of movement, respectively, with handgrip. In conclusion, hand, or arm, training Apps played on conventional mobile devices are likely to be accessible only to mildly-disabled stroke patients. Technological adaptations such as grip-control can enable more severely affected subjects to engage with self-training software.
BACKGROUND: Smartphone usage has spread to many settings including that of healthcare with numerous potential and realised benefits. The ability to download custom-built software applications (apps) has created a new wealth of clinical resources available to healthcare staff, providing evidence-based decisional tools to reduce medical errors.Previous literature has examined how smartphones can be utilised by both medical student and doctor populations, to enhance educational and workplace activities, with the potential to improve overall patient care. However, this literature has not examined smartphone acceptance and patterns of medical app usage within the student and junior doctor populations. METHODS: An online survey of medical student and foundation level junior doctor cohorts was undertaken within one United Kingdom healthcare region. Participants were asked whether they owned a Smartphone and if they used apps on their Smartphones to support their education and practice activities. Frequency of use and type of app used was also investigated. Open response questions explored participants' views on apps that were desired or recommended and the characteristics of apps that were useful. RESULTS: 257 medical students and 131 junior doctors responded, equating to a response rate of 15.0% and 21.8% respectively. 79.0% (n=203/257) of medical students and 74.8% (n=98/131) of junior doctors owned a smartphone, with 56.6% (n=115/203) of students and 68.4% (n=67/98) of doctors owning an iPhone.The majority of students and doctors owned 1–5 medical related applications, with very few owning more than 10, and iPhone owners significantly more likely to own apps (Chi sq, p<0.001). Both populations showed similar trends of app usage of several times a day. Over 24hours apps were used for between 1--30 minutes for students and 1--20 minutes for doctors, students used disease diagnosis/management and drug reference apps, with doctors favouring clinical score/calculator apps. CONCLUSIONS: This study found a high level of smartphone ownership and usage among medical students and junior doctors. Both groups endorse the development of more apps to support their education and clinical practice.
New (mobile phones, smartphones, tablets, and social media) and traditional media (television) have come to dominate the lives of many children and adolescents. Despite all of this media time and new technology, many parents seem to have few rules regarding the use of media by their children and adolescents.