Thursday, January 17, 2013

10 Brain Health Predictions from SharpBrains

Here’s a link to an interesting post from the SharpBrains people about a new report that predicts massive (or at least it seems massive to me) acceptance/implementation/utilization of digital programs to improve brain health. 

The report’s rather long name is “The Digital Brain Health Market 2012–2020: Web-based, mobile and biometrics-based technology to assess, monitor and enhance cognition and brain functioning.” Here’s a link to a description of the report - http://www.sharpbrains.com/market-report/

So why am I interested in this? To me, digital brain health means online brain training programs like Lumosity – www.lumosity.com – which I use three to four times/week.

Here’s the 10 predictions that the SharpBrain folks list based on the report:
  1. More than one mil­lion adults in North Amer­ica alone will take a self-administered annual brain health check-up via their iPad or Android tablet.
  2. More than one million amateur athletes will better manage possible concussions by taking cognitive base­line tests via a mobile device.
  3. More than 150,000 teenage and adult AAA mem­bers will access web-based brain training to become safer drivers.
  4. Biometrics-aided meditation will become the next big thing in corporate and consumer wellness.
  5.  iPad-based cognitive screenings will inform more diagnoses of Alzheimer’s disease and MCI than neuroimaging.
  6. Patients with Multiple Sclerosis in at least 10 countries will be offered online cognitive training together with drug-based therapy to help address their condition.
  7. Insomnia and depression will be first-line treated with computerized Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in at least two national health services.
  8. The industry’s first brain-based bio­marker to predict depression treatment responses will be cleared by the FDA.
  9. Brain training firm Lumos Labs and/or biometrics-based developer NeuroSky will file for an IPO.
  10.  At least one major insurer will launch an educational campaign to help adults proactively take charge of their own “brain fitness” navigating emerging research and digital brain health tools.
My takeaway from all this is a) digital brain training is well-accepted by the larger medical community and going mainstream, and b) those of us who can benefit from digital brain health tools ought to use them instead of dithering about it.

PS - And here's a link to a cool infographic that visualizes all this: http://www.sharpbrains.com/executive-summary/

1 comment:

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