Jun 21, 2017 09:45 AM EDT
The World Health Organization reported that there are 350 million people around the world suffering from depression. If not addressed properly, depression can lead to suicide. But what if there is a device that can detect depression and prevent people from committing suicide?
Ybrain, a Korean startup, created a smart headband that will help people suffering from depression receive treatment. The smart headband called Mindd weighs just around 150 grams and given to patients to continue their treatment in their homes.
The smart headband delivers a stream of electricity to the brain;s frontal lobe via transcranial direct current stimulation. According to researchers, that particular area of the brain is associated with depression. So when electricity is sent out from the smart headband to that brain region, it is stimulated and thoughts of depression decreases.
Lee Ki Won, CEO of Ybrain and a former researcher at Samsung Electro-Mechanics, say that the headband is connected to an app where they can monitor their activity levels as well as their sleep patterns.
At the moment, the smart headband is only available in hospitals but Lee said that they want the device to be accessible to anyone so that they can easily receive treatment at their homes.
They expect to add more 150 smart headbands to hospitals and treat at least 3,000 people this year.
The company is also looking forward to making the technology global. Thus, it is partnering with the Harvard Medical School to conduct a study using the smart headband to 500 participants.
Aside from Mindd, the company has also created wearables for treating other neuropsychiatric disorders and migraines.
The smart headband offers an alternative that might prove better than common anti-depressant drugs, such as Prozac, Lexapro, and Zoloft, which often have adverse effects on patients.
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