New app to let you test stress on your smartphone

By Allison Rubenstein,

Researchers are currently working on a smartphone app that will test your stress level easily and cost-effectively.

Essentially, users will collect their saliva with a small external device, allow the saliva to travel onto an assay strip, and then take a flash photo of the strip with their phones. The app will then measure the amount of cortisol, a stress hormone, in the saliva.

So, rather than going to a lab and paying up to $50 for a stress test, you will be able to administer the analysis yourself with your phone and a cheap, simple tube, reports Viral Global News.

Developers intend for the design of the app and device to be extremely straightforward for users.

“We are trying to make sure a skilled 8th-grader—a 12-year-old—can get accurate results,” wrote optical engineer Dr. Randall Polson, according to Reuters.

Of the many uses this health app may provide, one is the prevention of psychotic depression. Dr. Joel Ehrenkranz, the lead developer, notes that cortisol levels will elevate prior to the onset of psychosis. Individuals at risk for psychotic depression can use the software to monitor themselves and seek assistance early.

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