The Global Stress Epidemic: How Mobile Technologies Offer Data-Driven Solutions

Soldiers are selected based on their performance under extreme stress. Yet an estimated 30% will return from service with post-traumatic stress disorder. If the best trained have difficulty managing stress, what hope does that give the rest of us? By any metric, the effects of stress represent a true global epidemic. Post-traumatic stress among veterans costs over $4 Billion a year. Mood disorders affect over 60 million Americans. High stress leads to almost $8000 more in annual health care costs. And over 200 million prescriptions are being written for anti-anxiety medications in the United States alone. Objective data is now critical throughout medicine and daily life. However, medical diagnoses and treatments of stress rely on subjective self-reports to evaluate symptom severity and trends. Portable technologies to measure and manage health under stress enable data-driven solutions. Biosensor technologies are now small enough to monitor your autonomic nervous system from one hour to thousands in one person to millions. Personalized analytics compute recurring reports of daily stress and health trends. Mobile software is transformed with real-time applications driven by biofeedback and social support networks. These data-driven technologies address the effects of stress on human health and happiness.

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