The Role of Technology in Emotional and Mental Status Testing

           The emerging technology offers clinicians and researchers the ability to facilitate rapid linkage to care, evaluate trajectory and risk in real-time, and synthesize multiple data streams. Clinicians use advanced technology such as electronic health records to access the most recent information about the client’s cognitive tests. Decisions on a patient’s mental health require expertise, high-quality data, and analytics. Clinicians end up relying on technology to reduce bias based on their clinical decision-making in mental health. Examples include knowledge databases, platforms that offer psychoeducation on treatment options, accessible information about mental health problems and their treatment methods, statistical decision-making using algorithms, among other technological aids on decision making. The evaluation and application of technology-based tools can help clinicians in treatment, monitoring the mentally ill patient, improving emotional status, and preventing mental illness, which helps increase mental health understanding.

The rapid advance of technology such as devices for measuring biometric data and sensors, apps for secure communication, and advanced treatment technology devices and apps help on improving mental and emotional status (Mendez, 2021). Sensors embedded on a smartwatch and other wearable devices collect data such as stress and mood data recorded on a smartphone app. Treatment technology such as biofeedback and neurofeedback devices, virtual reality, and transcranial magnetic stimulation devices enhances clinical research on mental status. Clinicians and researchers embrace the advances and trends of technology in mental health sectors which help them in testing: appearance and general behavior of individuals, perceptual disturbances attitude, rapport, affect, and mood, thought processes and thought content, insight, and judgment, and impulse control. Testing the above-mentioned mental health conditions will help on improving and increasing people’s mental wellbeing (Magnavita, 2018).

Clinicians can use the advanced technology to examine the appearance and general behavior of the client by evaluating the information the client post on social media and other internet forums which may contain the client’s impression. For example, pictures posted on the internet may reveal the client’s self-presentation, online appearance, and behavior. Some apps and web pages ask users to provide information about themselves and photographs. Clinicians may use technology to see the emotional status of individuals, such as attitude, rapport, mood, and affect (Magnavita, 2018). A psychiatrist can also ask the client about interaction with some internet use.

The person being evaluated may display an unusual attitude, and the psychiatrist may refer to other electronic data before making a clinical decision. As mentioned above, clinicians may use sensors to monitor an individual’s mood. Clinicians can also use the technology to know individuals’ thought processes and thought content, which highly affects mental status. Most internet websites and phone applications save users’ history and activities they have been carrying out. Psychiatrists may use the information collected and held on clients’ phones to know about an individual’s thought content and process. The clinician may use the client’s phone to tell about their preoccupation and psychosis, which will aid in testing individuals’ mental status and help prevent delusion-related illness such as bipolar disorders, schizoaffective disorder, among other diseases with psychotic features (Mendez, 2021).

Technology may also help clinicians test individual’s perceptual disturbances such as derealization and depersonalization, which affect the mental status of people. In addition, psychiatrists may use virtual reality technology to identify an individual’s virtual characters and activities in the virtual world, which may affect mental health (Voss & Das, 2020). Advanced technology can also help people’s insight and judgment, such as the context of internet behavior like harassment on computer-mediated communication, which portrays some personality disorder. In addition, technology use may provide information about impaired judgment and psychopathology, such as poor judgment on regulating one’s internet presence. Finally, clinicians may use technology for impulse control, such as impulsive internet behavior control, to improve the mental wellbeing of the internet user. For example, pathological gambling, excessive shopping, and compulsive sexual behaviors may exacerbate difficulties with impulse control, and mental care providers may use this information to improve the mental wellbeing of internet users.

Computer-aided tools such as statistical and analytical tools save time by speeding on analysis and interpretation of the results. Computer-aided tools for understanding and analysis decrease designing report models since the computer has software that automates tasks (Yanase & Triantaphyllou, 2019). Results are arranged in tables and figures for effective data representation, which reduces errors and improves accuracy. Mistakes are also reduced due to minimum manual designing, and accuracy is increased as computer-aided software can measure the accuracy level of designing, skills, and precision. It is easy to edit reports as software contains tools for modifying and fixing errors efficiently. It is easy to share interpreted announcements since computer-aided software includes saving and storing files for future reference and sharing. On the other hand, computer-aided tools are vulnerable to viruses and computer breakdown, and designed reports can be lost and prone to attack. Also, the devices require skilled labor, which increases the cost and time to train operators. Software is supposed to be updated, making the system costly.

Conclusively, technology is essential for testing individuals’ mental and emotional status, and clinicians and scientific researchers can use advanced technology to improve mental wellbeing and prevent mental illness. During clinical testing of the mental status of visitors, clinicians must ask clients open-ended questions regarding the use of the internet to encourage self-disclosure and candor. If possible, the clinician can request the client to access their web pages and phone application to read history and activities. The clinician can also use the available technology and devices in the organization to test individuals’ mental and emotional status.

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Magnavita, J. J. (2018). Introduction: How can technology advance mental health treatment?

Mendez, M. F. (2021). The Mental Status Examination Handbook E-Book. Elsevier Health Sciences.

Voss, R. and Das, J. M. (2020). Mental Status Examination. StatPearls.

Yanase, J. and Triantaphyllou, E. (2019). A systematic survey of computer-aided diagnosis in medicine: Past and present developments. Expert Systems with Applications138, 112821.