A few months ago, I suffered from panic attacks. I consider myself lucky, because those panic attacks disappeared after tackling the underlying problem with therapy. I know, however, that there are thousands of people out there who experience these panic attacks on a regular basis. Having a panic disorder, as it’s called, is weirdly still a bit of a taboo. Luckily, more and more people are opening up about this subject, like Youtubers Tanya Burr and Zoe Sugg.
I have to admit, I always thought lightly of panic attacks and I think I’m not alone in that thought. It wasn’t until I experience one myself, that I realized how awful they are. You feel like you’re going crazy, you can’t breathe and the tears just keep on coming. I felt like I was going to die.
I couldn’t help but wonder; what if there was a way you can control this part of your mind? I would’ve given my left arm for a device that made me calm down and out of the panic attack. When I stumbled upon Thync, I knew that this was a device that somewhere in the future help a lot of people.
Thync is a device that sends ‘Vibes’ to your brain. These Vibes are neurosignaling wave forms, send through strips that you place either behind your ear or on the back of your neck. You then connect your module (the white thingy pictured above) to your phone, on which you download an app. The app is now only available for iPad or iPhone, but the Android app is to be released in 2015.
In this app, you select either Calm or Energy vibes. This makes the strip you’ve placed behind your ear or on the back of your neck either vibrate or press slightly. You can feel the effect in five minutes.
I’m sure this video shows the steps much better:
I know the Thync website states that this device is just for ‘lifestyle and wellness applications’. But what if these kinds of devices are developed further and made into something that actually can help people when having a panic or anxiety attack. Or, even further down the line, even depression. It’s a scary yet exciting thought, that we could change our mental health by wearables. You could literally flip the switch on your mood. It’s a fine line between transforming into another person or becoming the best version of you. It’s an ethical question, isn’t it; should we use tech to ‘improve’ or change the very feelings that make us human? There are a lot of opinions on this matter, but I’m very curious about yours!