MENTAL HEALTH AND DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY: A PUBLIC HEALTH REVIEW OF CURRENT TRENDS AND RESPONSES

Authors

  • Jane Osareme Ogugua Independent Researcher, Abuja, Nigeria
  • Chiamaka Chinaemelum Okongwu Department of Community Health and Primary Health Care, University of Lagos, Nigeria
  • Opeoluwa Oluwanifemi Akomolafe HealthConnect Services, Walsall, UK
  • Evangel Chinyere Anyanwu Independent Researcher, Nebraska, USA
  • Obinna Donald Daraojimba Department of Information Management, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria Nigeria

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.51594/imsrj.v4i2.754

Abstract

The intersection of mental health and digital technology has become a critical focus in the realm of public health. This paper provides a concise overview of the current trends and responses within this evolving landscape. The widespread integration of digital technology into daily life has both positive and negative implications for mental health. On one hand, digital platforms offer innovative tools for mental health support, including virtual therapy, mental health apps, and online communities. These resources enhance accessibility and reduce barriers to seeking help. Conversely, concerns have arisen regarding the adverse impact of excessive digital screen time, social media use, and cyberbullying on mental well-being. The paper explores the prevalence of digital mental health interventions, emphasizing the need for evidence-based practices and regulatory frameworks to ensure their efficacy and user safety. Additionally, it addresses the growing recognition of the digital divide and disparities in access to mental health resources, emphasizing the importance of inclusivity in digital mental health initiatives. Responses to these challenges involve collaborative efforts among mental health professionals, technology developers, policymakers, and public health practitioners. The paper highlights the importance of research in understanding the nuanced relationship between digital technology and mental health, informing the development of targeted interventions. Furthermore, it emphasizes the need for comprehensive public health strategies that prioritize digital literacy, mental health education, and the promotion of positive online behaviors. The paper underscores the multifaceted nature of the relationship between mental health and digital technology, calling for a holistic and collaborative approach to address the evolving challenges and opportunities in this dynamic landscape.

Keywords:  Mental health, Digital technologies, Public health, Trends, Review.

Published

2024-02-02

Issue

Section

Articles