6 Mental Health Apps That Can Help Veterinarians
You know your well-being should be a top priority, but finding time to incorporate intentional practices into your busy life can be challenging. Still, like most things, there's an app for that. Whether you struggle to find the perfect meditation sessions or get your sleep cycle on track, a variety of mental health apps can help. There are even veterinary-specific apps that address the unique challenges we face. To help boost your well-being, here are some mental health apps that can help you become your best for your family, team, patients, and yourself.
1. Vets in Mind
Created by a veterinarian who struggled with burnout, Vets in Mind offers 24/7 access to mental health support, tools, and resources — all in the palm of your hand. The app includes more than 500 informational resources, including the following:
An "I need help now" button that connects users with support agencies in more than 50 countries
Actions to take if someone you know needs professional mental health support
Tips for building resilience and well-being
News about current mental health and well-being developments
Books, podcasts, and e-learning courses
Links to other well-being apps, blog posts, and products
Vets in Mind also features personal stories from other veterinarians about depression, suicide, anxiety, and anger that can help you feel connected to other professionals in similar situations, so you do not feel alone.
2. Sleep Cycle
Good, restful sleep is the foundation of a healthy lifestyle, yet 1 in 3 adults report getting less than the recommended amount of sleep, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Whether you have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or getting up in the morning, identifying your challenges is the first step toward a good night's rest. Sleep Cycle tracks your sleep patterns and provides tips to optimize your nighttime rest. It also has an alarm clock that gently wakes you during your lightest sleep phase instead of a shrill alarm jolting you awake.
With games and activities, Happify makes supporting your mental health seem like fun. Each game is actually a science-based activity designed by positive psychology experts to reduce stress, build resilience, and overcome negative thoughts. The app's overall goal is to increase your happiness, but you can also choose specific tracks to work on, such as coping with stress, conquering negative thoughts, attaining career success, building self-confidence, and achieving mindfulness through meditation. Each game takes only a few minutes, but the positive effects compound over time to improve your well-being.
Cost: A free version allows users to access some content, while full-access plans start at $14.99 per month
Meditation is a great way to start your day, refocus during stressful times, and wind down in the evening. Headspace is a meditation app designed to help you relax and learn how to live mindfully. Daily, short, guided meditation sessions are available, including themed sessions to help you relax in specific situations (e.g., trouble sleeping, stressful circumstances, and emotional crises). Beginner sessions will walk you through fundamentals to help you get the most out of meditation.
Cost: $12.99 per month, or $69.99 per year after a free two-week trial
Frequent promotions offer free or discounted subscriptions.
Calm is a top-rated mindfulness app known for its meditation content, but the app contains much more. There are hundreds of calming exercises, helpful breathing techniques, and sleep stories narrated by celebrities with soothing voices, such as Matthew McConaughey and Idris Elba. Immersive in-app experiences feature nature scenes, sounds, and relaxing background music to help transport you beyond your office during quick between-appointment relaxation sessions. You can track your mood and anxiety levels over time and set reminders for daily meditation sessions. Calm also offers masterclasses taught by mindfulness experts on a range of topics, such as breaking bad habits, discovering happiness, and conscious parenting.
Cost: $14.99 per month, or $69.99 per year, after a one-week free trial
6. Kite Veterinary
Kite Veterinary recognizes that busy veterinarians are more likely to use a mental health program conveniently delivered via microlearning instead of lengthy webinars, seminars, or multi-day courses. With microlearning, you can access small bites of information — typically only five minutes in length — at your convenience. The app library includes content on everything from mindfulness and self-care to healthy conflict resolution and leadership. You can purchase the app, which can be branded and customized for your practice, for your entire team to proactively provide mental health support.
Cost: Individual subscription: $129 per year
Team subscription: $99 per team member, per year
With user-friendly and efficient apps taking over more aspects of life, why not let technology help boost your well-being? These mental health apps can make your day-to-day more manageable and help you realize you're not alone in your journey.