Technology can provide useful tools for individuals in recovery. Most of us carry cell phones with us daily, and some software developers have created apps for recovery. Dr. David Gastfriend and Fire Mountain’s Aaron Huey discuss the app DynamiCare Health during the “Beyond Risk and Back” podcast “An app that can help control recovery?” The DynamiCare Health app uses financial incentives, paid for by parents in advance, to reward a person for following their treatment. The app also has randomized drug testing, where your teen would be monitored via their phone’s camera to take a saliva swab test. The app also provides helpful information and recovery coaching to help your teen recover from addiction. Other apps for addiction are available, such as many Alcoholics Anonymous, which offer daily meditations, 12-step toolkits, and other useful literature. Other apps can help to encourage healthy lifestyle habits, like exercise and nutrition.
DynamiCare App: Addiction and Gratification
Addiction and instant gratification are tied together. Your teen ingests a substance and feels the effect quickly. Instant gratification in and of itself is not necessarily a bad thing. People are motivated to do many healthy activities for an instant reward, like drinking a glass of water when they’re thirsty or watching a funny movie to lift their spirits. DynamiCare taps into your kid’s desire for instant gratification to help them recover. For each positive step that your teen takes that is captured by the app, they receive a financial incentive. Depending on the program you purchase, you can get home-swab tests sent to your kid to complete at random under video supervision.
For more on the DynamiCare App, check out Fire Mountain’s Aaron Huey’s conversation with co-developer Dr. David Gastfriend on “Beyond Risk and Back.”
Other Addiction Recovery Apps
A plethora of apps have been developed for those dealing with addictions. Apps utilizing tried and true techniques from 12-step groups can help your child with reminders, daily meditations, and other information. Many apps also have exercises to work on each of the 12 steps that have made these programs successful. Push-notifications can remind users to focus on their recovery work and complete activities relating to the 12 steps. Some of these have in-app purchases for more literature and information. Many of the 12-step apps, like those sponsored by Alcoholics Anonymous, are free to install and you can search for which one appears best for your needs.
Other apps to help maintain sobriety are available that are not strongly tied to any particular modality or a 12-step program. Some of these focus on encouraging sobriety through daily reminders of progress, connecting to support systems, providing daily meditations, and giving encouragement when hitting recovery milestones. Much like the 12-step apps, many of these apps are free to install. You and your teen can find apps that work for you and your needs. If your child does not have access to a cell phone, the apps can be an excellent resource for you. You can learn tips and get advice to pass along to them, get reminders to celebrate milestones, or gain insight into your child’s recovery process.
Healthy Lifestyle Apps
Recovery from addiction involves more than just maintaining sobriety. Addiction recovery is a process of change from unhealthy habits to healthy ones. Your child can benefit from learning healthy lifestyle habits, like exercising and eating healthy, to replace unhealthy habits. These apps can teach your kid to stay on target with fitness goals, sleep routines, eating habits, and other healthy tips by encouraging healthy lifestyle habits. Some apps offer rewards that can keep a person on target with their new goals, show them new fitness routines, suggest goals, and encourage healthy living. You can also utilize fitness and healthy eating apps for yourself to set an example for your child. There are too many of these apps to name; however, many are free to install. Search the internet and explore which ones will best suit your needs.
Technology has opened the door for new ways of learning how to cope with addiction and live a healthy lifestyle. You can begin using this technology with fun apps that your kid might enjoy using. As a parent, you might want to consider trying some of these apps yourself to learn more about sobriety, recovery, and healthy living. Kids are growing up in a world where apps and cell phones will be utilized frequently. You and your child can capitalize on the innovations by using these devices to help lead a better life.
Cell phone apps for recovery can help your child maintain sobriety and learn healthy lifestyle habits. While we might be cautious about cell phones and screens due to some of the issues surrounding overuse, we can benefit from some of the apps developed for helping people achieve positive outcomes. Apps affiliated with AA offer guidance and support through 12-step processes and can help your child keep track of their sobriety. Other sobriety apps can keep track of progress and remind your child to celebrate milestones. Even if your child does not have access to a cell phone, you might want to check out some of these apps as a resource. They can provide insight into your child’s recovery and give you a sense of what their journey looks like. Other apps, like DynamiCare, are like a “recovery coach in your pocket.” These apps are part of a program that includes randomized drug testing, coaching, literature, and other resources. For more resources to help your kid in recovery, call Fire Mountain Residential Treatment at (303) 443-3343.