Anti-Anxiety App is a smartphone app for use with iOS 5.1.1 and above on Apple devices or version 2.2 and above on Android devices. The app was first launched in March 2013 and the current version (1.9.7) was launched in October 2015. The app was created by SoundMindz, which offers an array of services for users and clinicians. For example, users may sign up for personal online therapy sessions from the company, may download an app such as Anti-Anxiety App, may elect to use a workbook designed by the company, or may also use an online “Progress Tracker” for journal entries. Anti-Anxiety is one of four apps designed by SoundMindz.
After entering data to create a user profile, the user is directed to the Assess section of the app. If the user answers affirmatively to a question in the Assess section, he is directed to a text-based set of recommendations, a chapter in the Anxiety Workbook, to a series of relevant videos, or to additional readings in the Resources/Articles section. The user is also asked to choose or create an activity to help resolve the symptom and to track the progress of this activity. The user is also given a set of recommendations to perform for each day of the week. In the Progress Tracker section one can select from a menu of pre-determined symptoms or activities, or one can create lists of customized symptoms or activities.
Ease of Use and User Experience
The text sections of the app are easy to use and to navigate. The graphics associated with progress tracking are quite rudimentary and not particularly attractive. The videos are composed of interviews with the founder of the company, Arthur P. Ciaramicoli, Ed.D., Ph.D. on various subjects related to depression and anxiety. The book chapters included in the app give recommendations and advice based on particular clinical examples described by Dr. Ciaramicoli. These are relatively brief and accessible, but may not be particularly relevant for specific individuals or problems. The article section contains brief discussions of research and scientific data that may be helpful, but no actual references are given. In general, it feels as though this app is geared towards sharing the extensive experience of Dr. Ciaramicoli through “technology-enhanced” individual psychotherapy, but it is not particularly rich in customizable, individualized or self-directed features. I would recommend this app for people who may be interested in trying the tele-psychotherapy opportunities offered by the company, and whose current health care providers may be interested in enrolling with this system.
There are no scientific publications regarding the use of this app itself. The app is based on the principles of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, although the traditional activities of CBT, such as identifying cognitive distortions and working through them in order to change affect and behavior are adhered to quite loosely.
The app itself is free. Other services requested from the company are billed at different rates.
Review date: November 2015