When dealing with anxiety, it’s in our best interest to consider every tool we have at our disposal. In today’s day and age, perhaps the most effective tool we have consistently available to us is our phone. So, what are some of the best apps for anxiety?
These are a few of the best apps for anxiety I have installed on my phone. Each serves a very different purpose to help you manage various aspects of an anxiety disorder.
Keep reading for a brief explanation of each.
This app actually surprised and impressed me, because I hadn’t even heard of it before downloading it. The free version includes easy to understand lessons on the basics of anxiety, as well as tools for breathing and visualization exercises. You can keep a pretty basic journal there, and stats are tracked for factors such as how low you’ve gone without a panic attack, etc.
My favorite part of this app is the big red panic button at the bottom. No matter what you’re doing on the app, you may push the panic button for immediate help with a panic attack. From there, they give you two options: “Help me feel okay,” or “Let’s do this.” This is actually an awesome feature I haven’t seen elsewhere, because they’re giving you the option to either be helped out of the panic attack, or… to embrace “radical acceptance” a useful concept I don’t see embraced often enough, in which (when you’re feeling confident) you can choose to embrace and challenge the panic attack, rather than fearing it.
Rootd is worth having for the panic button alone. I’ve only used the free version, and find it to be useful as-is. If you want to unlock the additional features, the premium unlock price is low and very reasonable.
Who is this app for: Anyone who suffers from panic attacks or panic disorder. It’s useful for other anxiety disorders as well, but I think it really shines when it comes to panic attack management.
Daylight is a digital therapeutic app from BigHealth. Its purpose is to help people with worry and anxiety to establish better habits and coping mechanisms. The app itself seems to be designed around helping you to take time to slow down and compartmentalize your anxiety. With cute animation and a soothing narrator, the app is very interactive and relaxing to use.
My only complaint with this app is that it is a bit slow-paced for me. I like to rip through information rapidly, and this app doesn’t really let you set your own pace. You’re pretty much forced to follow along at the app’s pace, which is frustrating to me, but perhaps this is intentional; It forces you to slow down, to be in the moment, and to take each exercise seriously.
Who is this app for: People with generalized anxiety disorder, or just about any anxiety disorder. It’s good for people who want to slowly build anxiety-reducing habits, since the app reminds you to perform exercises and encourages you via text from time to time.
Inscape is an app for meditation and sleep exercises. This is one of many premium meditation and sleep apps on the Google Play and Apple stores, so there are plenty of competitor options or free alternatives if you prefer. This, however, is the premium app that I went with.
This app includes a significant number of guided and unguided meditations, visualization journeys, soundscapes, breathwork, and more. There really are a ton of options to choose from in each category. I particularly like the meditations and the soundscapes. As someone who always found the sound of rain to be relaxing, I really like the soundscapes for falling asleep. I personally find them perfect for sleeping on a plane, etc.
While Inscape provides a great deal of high-quality options, finding a free alternative should be just as good of a start for beginners.
Who is this app for: This app is perfect for anyone interested in meditation, better sleep, or ambient background noise.
Recolor is basically just an adult coloring app. It’s simple to understand and use right away. Whether you’re suffering from general anxiety, panic attacks, or another anxiety disorder, coloring apps can help you to relax and enter flow state while engaging in something simple and satisfying. This can help you to ground yourself in the present quickly and easily.
This app is free to use for some images, but there is a premium upgrade for those who want to unlock all of the available canvases. You’re free to try the competitor apps, I just preferred the user interface of Recolor. The free version should work just fine for you; if you really love it, you can eventually consider paying for the upgrade.
Who is this app for: Anyone with anxiety or panic attacks who is looking for a quick way to divert their focus to something more positive and enjoyable.