Mental health apps to the rescue?

You know how everyone is struggling to find a therapist, pay for a therapist, or even find the time to look for a therapist? With the U.S. Surgeon General warning that the youth mental health crisis now reaches 1 in 3 students, the need for help is rising as 90% of therapists see more clients seeking help as practitioners turn away multiple calls for care a day. But what if apps like Headspace that’s free for Gen Z teens, could help? Today, we’re looking into three upcoming youth-focused mental health apps leaning into video games, social media, and entertainment strategies to help Gen Zs on their mental health journey.


Founded by Dr. Sarah Adler, a Stanford Professor of Psychiatry and Clinical Psychologist, Wave is an “emotional health platform” focused on helping “especially those traditionally left out (e.g. BIPOC and LGBTWQ+ communities).” Through scientifically proven psychological horoscopes, emotional well-being quizzes, and a commitment to helping users learn more about themselves, Wave’s “video game-like experience” leans on sparking neurochemicals in the user’s brain that mimic therapy sessions. Focused on tangible outcomes and not business metrics like downloads, Wave has gained $2 million in pre-seed funds and is set to be available in spring 2022.


Created specifically for teens with the purpose of tackling mental health, BeMe is a mental health platform that’s mashing together “the best aspects of social, gaming, and streaming engagement.” With lighter content (like puppy videos) and coaching sections with real trained adults, BeMe will be paid for through users’ insurance as they function in a for-profit model. Developed by the Trevor Project, Facebook, and Harvard, we expect extremely skeptical Gen Z eyes to be watching as $7 million in seed helps slate BeMe to launch later this year.


Mindset is an app “dedicated to normalizing the conversation of human expression” through authentic and immersive audio collections created by artists and celebrities. Noting a white space opportunity in artists' ability to monetize their own story, Mindset is a platform that gives creators, like musicians, a chance to tell their life stories. Mindset looks to provide an avenue for mental wellness as they create a platform for human connection, a feeling Gen Zs seek from their favorite artists. Having raised close to $9 million in seed funds and launched last year, Mindset just might be the future authentic connection that investors say, “isn’t always achievable through social or traditional media.”