DSA is a fantastic resource to support students with a disability, learning difficulty or mental health condition, however sometimes we can all use a little extra support and a mobile app that can be with you at all times can be a great resource; Especially when said app is designed to support a particular form of mental health, such as Anxiety, Depression, OCD or perhaps PTSD … whatever your needs, you’ll find that there’s quite an impressive list of apps that can be downloaded either to an Android or iPhone and, in many cases, are absolutely free!

So, for this year’s Uni Mental Health Day, if indeed you are a student who is struggling with mental health and whether or not you are being supported through Disabled Student’s Allowances or not, we thought you might get some use from this list of useful apps designed to support people struggling with mental health!

Self-help for Anxiety Management (SAM)

If, like me, you suffer from Anxiety but don’t really find that meditation works for you, then you might get a lot of mileage out of this app, developed by the University of the West of England. Designed to help you track your mood, identify and avoid triggers, reduce stress and reach out and connect with other SAM users, SAM is a very helpful app for those with Anxiety disorders … and of course, it’s free!

Available for iOS and Android – FREE


If you happen to have Spotify Premium, you can download this app in its entirety for free! Headspace is for those interested in trying out guided meditation and boasts a 32% drop in stress after using the app for 30 days! If you’re the type who gets stressed and can’t seem to unscramble your radar, why not find a nice, quiet spot and try out this app?

Available for iOS and Android – FREE with In-App Purchases

PTSD Coach

Designed to support military personnel suffering from PTSD as a result of their service, but useful for all, PTSD coach allows you to record and manage your symptoms, take assessments, learn more about the condition and how to cope, and offers a vast toolbox of releasing stress and soothing the mind and body. It can also prompt you to call someone you trust in the event of a crisis and store their contact info for you.

Available for iOS and Android – FREE


For those who need to vent to somebody without judgement, but aren’t exactly people-persons, why not try chatting to your own personal AI assistant? Always there when you need to chat (literally, as it’ll be stored on your phone), Youper offers a way to talk over any stressful issues without actually talking, helping to reduce Anxiety and Depression, track and document your mental health and have that all-important chat to pick you up when you need!

Available for iOS and Android – FREE with In-App Purchases


If you’re anything at all like me you might struggle a lot with procrastination – in which case, this app offers a creative and fun solution! Plant a tree using this app and it’ll keep growing into a healthy, tall tree – so long as you keep working! But go watching Youtube or scrolling through Facebook, and the tree will wither! A fun and innovative way to keep you on track, plus you can earn in-game rewards for meeting targets!

Available for iOS and Android – £1.99


Again, if you’re anything like I am, you might be slightly too partial to the video game world rather than the real one! But what if you could make a video game out of your real life? With all the perks you gain from completing ‘quests’, like doing the dishes, waking up early or going to the gym – and all the punishments like loss of health and other debuffs for your character should you go neglecting those ‘quests’, Habitica can be a fun way of establishing positive habits and you can even go ahead and join ‘guilds’ and fight monsters with other users!

Available for iOS and Android – FREE with In-App Purchases


Seventh on our list, appropriately enough, with my own experience of mental health, I firmly believe that one of the best remedies is to talk about it with someone. 7Cups is an online mental and emotional health community, formed of volunteer listeners and licenced professionals, offering one-on-one chats, group sessions, online threads and more! If you want to, you can pay for professional therapy, but to talk to a listener or take part in a group session is free! You can sign up on the website and download the app for either Android or iPhone.

Available for iOS and Android – FREE with In-App Purchases

Though some of you might feel slightly sceptical or even uncomfortable at the idea of using technology to support your mental health, it’s important to realise that everybody has different needs and responds better to different things. Some prefer therapy, others might find medication more effective … and others might prefer technology! I’ll admit I was sceptical myself at first – until these apps encouraged me to document and analyse my thoughts, which I have found to be incredibly enlightening and very useful in recognising common thought traps, like catastrophising, denial, or lashing out at myself and others.

Ultimately I urge you to try out these, or some of the hundreds of  other apps for yourself, dear reader, decide which ones work best for you and decide for yourself if you want to keep using it. I can tell you from personal experience that you might well be pleasantly surprised!


Also, don’t forget Access2Learn has its own mobile App – MyDSA. You can find lots of information about Disabled Students Allowances, locate our DSA Centres, and find more useful links to funding bodies and charities that can provide help and support.

Available for iOS and Android – FREE

University Mental Health Day 2020

University Mental Health Day brings together the university community to make mental health a university-wide priority and create ongoing year round change to the future of student mental health.

There are lots of different ways you can get involved this University Mental Health Day. Why not visit their website to find out how you can support them – www.unimentalhealthday.co.uk and make sure you use #UniMentalHealthDay to help spread the word.

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