Can a headset and a smartphone app really cure depression? It's a claim by Flow for its medically valid brain stimulation headset, a device that monitors your neuron with gentle electric current, and is one you can buy and use in your own building.
For more information on major depressive disorder, you can also read more at the Mental Health Charity Mind, NHS website, or WebMD.
Flow is a medical technology company that was founded in 2016 and is currently based in Sweden. Its CEO, clinical psychologist Daniel Mason, founded the company after writing his master's thesis on brain stimulation, and has years of experience working at the crossroads between psychology and software software.
We hear you have electric shocks from headphones that help you rumble, but can a hardware product really succeed in place or start assisting with existing medical treatment for depression?
To get my head around the potential health benefits of a product like this, I spoke to Flow CEO Daniel Mason, while handling the Flow Headset, to get a sense of the hardware on Flow Fur.
What is a Flow Headset?
The flow headset looks a bit like a miniature VR headset, except that the curved white visor sits perfectly on your forehead, with a band tied at the top of your head to sit in place.
Bases also come with bunches of single-use cloth pads to place between the suction pads on your skin and headset, though your skin will likely not respond to direct electrical current.
Treatment lasts around 30 minutes, "18 sessions over a 6-week period" (three times a week) or "as long as needed." The headset is designed for use with a Virtual Therapy app, which helps users to report frustration, and allows the patient to do their diet, exercise regimen, sleep hygiene and meditation ("lifestyle changes"). App is only on iOS).
There is something vague about the idea of self-administering a mild form of shock therapy, but there are existing types of therapies that use the same underlying technique: transcranial direct-current stimulation (or TDCS).
This therapy is an aggressive way to stimulate the brain with mild electric currents, using battery-powered electrodes.
Flow's website states that "people diagnosed with depression often have less activity in the left lining of their brain. The headset delivers a soft electrical signal that activates neurons and rebalance activity in the frontal lobe.
"The headset is based on a well-researched brain stimulation technique called direct current stimulation, which, in clinical studies, has shown reliable improvement in symptoms of depression."
Hang on, is this a real thing?
Those claims seem somewhat scientific, with enough evidence to validate the flow headset for medical and medical use in Europe, with the technology undergoing numerous medical tests.
Manson tells me that Flow is US. Is also seeking such medical approval, and is in talks with the UK's National Health Service to provide a headset via prescription.
Treatment is listed on the NHS website as a possible treatment method, and the National Institute for Health Care and Care Excellence (NIC) has emphasized that there is "no major safety concern", although risks and side effects associated with patients should be taken. It.
You are strongly advised Is not Official diagnosis of major depressive disorder and use of headset without physician approval. Anyone with a broken skin in place of "pre-existing neurological" status or headset contact should be especially careful.
I make a mistake here in the direction of caution – as someone more familiar with the anxiety treatment used for depression – so I can't talk about effectiveness myself.
However, both British Journal P f Psychiatry And New England Journal of Medicine Have published the results of a randomized controlled trial using the type of brain stimulation used in the flow headset.
In both of the aforementioned trials, several hundred patients (289, later 245) worked with the British Journal of Psychiatry, calling "antidepressant drug treatment" comparable in primary treatment.
The New England Journal of Medicines, however, was more hesitant, having "more adverse" effects – such as "skin redness, tinnitus and panic." […] And new onset mania ”- without obvious improvement compared to other forms of therapy. Another study published by the journal Neal Journal Brain Stimulation advises against use for shock or epilepsy patients.
Prior to receiving the approval ticket in June 2019, the company worked for two years on "ensuring that all safety standards and good production practices were met and documented," said Flow CEO Daniel Mason.
But given the inconsistent results of previously available mental health treatments for patients in the UK and Europe, some skepticism is worthwhile.
Depression, for all its pervasiveness in our society (the World Health Organization estimates millions of people around the world live with the condition), is not really well understood – and there are various strategies to deal with this tragedy.
You are given cognitive behavioral therapy to understand underlying psychological causes, to cure behavioral symptoms, or to treat medicine – if different combinations of success, if not a combination of the three, you may be recommended intravenous psychoanalysis.
You may not even be recommended when you need it, however it can be difficult to diagnose a mental illness. So by offering a DIY solution you can buy for yourself – considering the lengthy and potential triggering consultation, even if you don't want to do so without medical approval – it offers its own convenience.
"The combination of brain stimulation headsets and therapy applications creates a new, very powerful, but also very safe, home remedies solution," says Manson.
Self-care and attention apps like Headspace have grown tremendously – the UK. GP in Always recommended by – Provides ways to manage stress, pain, or anxiety.
Naturally, cost becomes an issue when patients expect to find healthcare solutions outside of national health services. The flow headset costs $ 399 (approx. 80 480 / AU $ 710) at no extra cost – while the headspace application, by comparison, will set you $ 95 / £ 72 / AU $ 149 for a one-year subscription.
Manson makes sure to say that Flow is the only tool "in the cure toolbox", but as a commercially available hardware product, patients generally receive treatment, especially if the costs are reduced.
"Right now we're shifting from pharmacological treatment to more digital therapy-based alternatives," says Manson, who empowers patients and motivates them to treat their condition from home comfort.
"Given that brain stimulation devices (if clinically valid) provide little side effects and are affordable and accessible, it makes perfect sense that devices like Flow will become more and more popular."
So … should I get one?
Well, not with your own bat. Judy will look at the effectiveness of TDCS even if more traction is gradually gained as a possible aid to major depressive disorder.
Given the increasing pressure toward more digital-based therapies and care treatments, however, the signs suggest that there will be more treatments of this kind that have been suggested by medical professionals going forward.
But neither Stream nor I would recommend smoking this, and you should really wait until your doctor's doctor recommends you to help with your specific needs.
You can refer to this for more information Flow websiteGeneral Chat Chat Lounge