In a groundbreaking study, researchers from Lancaster University in the UK have unveiled a revolutionary smart wearable technology designed to assist individuals battling affective disorders.
The wrist-worn prototypes employ cutting-edge smart materials, capable of dynamically changing color, generating heat, and applying pressure or vibrations in sync with the users’ heightened emotions.
The potential impact is profound, particularly for those diagnosed with depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorders, offering a unique means to monitor and regulate their emotional states.
The wristbands, functioning as real-time emotional indicators, eliminate the need for constant reference to mobile or desktop devices. Co-author Muhammad Umair emphasized the complexity of understanding and controlling emotions.
Muhammad stated, “We wanted to create low-cost, simple prototypes to support understanding and engagement with real-time changes in arousal”. These wearables serve as a bridge between mind and body empowering users to connect with their feelings in everyday life.
The study delved into the efficacy of thermochromic materials and wrist-squeezing/vibrating devices, with participants reporting activations during diverse activities.
A pivotal finding was the devices’ ability to reveal previously unnoticed emotional responses, even after just two days of usage. This innovative approach promises a transformative impact on mental health.