Depression is a leading cause of disability worldwide, and it can be fatal. The major challenge in the treatment of depression is that people are still afraid to speak openly about it. Our Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his recent speech ‘Mann Ki Baat’ has advised people to come out and speak about their battle with depression.

With the rising burden of the illness as in-person therapy with a doctor isn’t always an option. A new chatbot app, Woebot, could be an alternative.

What is Woebot?

Woebot is an automated chatbot that helps people monitor their mood and help them to know about themselves. It basically works on a framework of CBT- Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, wherein it helps people to keep track of their feelings and triggering events. Woebot asks people about their daily experiences and records them in format of brief conversations.
A review of studies published recently in the journal World Psychiatry compared people who received CBT online to people who did it in person, and found that the online setting was just as effective.

Woebot, an artificial intelligence-powered chatbot designed using cognitive behavioral therapy is not a replacement for the traditional therapy, but addition to clinical approaches to treating depression.