Snapchat Launches Mental Health Feature

Published on February 19, 2020

We live in an age where everything revolves around social media, and anyone and everyone can get away with anything when it comes to social media. No matter where you go, you will most likely see a person looking down glued to their phone, and if they aren’t texting, then they are scrolling through their social media platforms.

According to recent studies, roughly 45% of the world’s population uses social media, with an average of 2 hours and 23 minutes spent per day on social media. Everyone relies on social media for the latest gossip news, the latest scoop on your favorite celebrity, etc. Still, it’s also a gateway for bullies, misrepresentation of things in life, and other unhealthy messages. So, what are these platforms doing about it?

Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube explicitly state to use these platforms with caution and at your own risk. They do let their users know that once you sign up, you are responsible and reliable for anything that you post or comes your way. They aren’t your mother or the justice police, so any bullying or negative comments towards you is your responsibility to handle them.

Now the games have changed, and Snapchat is here to change that. Snapchat just launched a new mental health widget called Here For You on its platform that helps with these issues and more such as anxiety and depression. Yes, Snapchat is still taking some of those steps of responsibility, but it also wants you to know that you aren’t alone in these situations.

Here For You works just like any other programming when you are on Snapchat. When the user types in words that associate with what they could infer, they need help with wellness issues; the particular widget will pop up. This unique feature works just like any other Snapchat program where the media will appear in the 10-second clip and where users can tap to learn more.

The feature will provide helpful resources from health experts as well as other content from local company partners on topics such as anxiety and depression. With the help of those partnering companies, they will also provide promoted results from these companies on those topics. It might sound self-promotional, but at least they are taking the initiative to provide access to these resources.

This widget is a big move for Snapchat and also the first of any social media platform to launch something like this around health and wellness. Adding more resources like this available to the public could be a small step into something bigger for mental health. Having these types of resources that are at our fingertips and easy access, I think, could change and help a lot of people.

Now we know it’s not going to change overnight or solve these issues, but it’s a start in the system, and it could go a long way with helping people. When it comes to mental health, resources now are so expensive or hard to find, so why don’t we make these sources easier to get for people. Social media may be a great start to open up and have resources for these types of health and wellness issues.

I think its a great start when it comes to getting and having access to resources like this. Even something such as Snapchat, where people can go on a social media platform that they use all the time and see someone talking about their anxiety depression or bullying. I think it can at least a little step into a bigger picture of how we could help people.

Jori Ayers is a Staff Writer at Grit Daily based in Tampa, Florida. She was formerly with the editorial team at Tampa Bay Parenting Magazine.

Read more

More GD News