Scientists have developed an app that provides a new approach to the treatment of headaches by helping sufferers record the severity and regularity of their pain.
The app is being used as part of a research study led by Professor Paul Martin from Australia's Griffith Health Institute's Behavioural Basis of Health programme. Martin has developed an approach designed to enable people to cope with the triggers of their headaches called Learning to Cope with Triggers (LCT).
Using a combination of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and LCT, the team is aiming to help headache sufferers to become desensitised to triggers such as food, noise, stress etc., or build up a tolerance to them.
Now, the team, in conjunction with Wexpert Technologies, have developed an electronic headache diary which can be used by participants in the study in order to record daily ratings of head pain.
"Information recorded via the app can be directly downloaded into data files, saving time and eliminating transcription errors," said Martin.
"The technology will enable the team to know when the ratings of head pain are made, rather than relying on the self-reports of the participants," he said.
The new app can be used on all smartphone platforms as well as on any form of computer. Martin said that current participants in the study have reported that the app is 'user friendly,' 'much easier to use than paper and pencil' and 'a convenient solution'.