How to Start Online Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in Canada with Your Own App?

1 month ago

Online cognitive behavioral therapy is proven to be an effective approach to managing and treating several mental health challenges.

Due to its clinical and economic benefits, the demand for CBT services is growing across the globe.

Let’s take a quick look at what research says about the stats of mental illness in Canada:

  • “In a  year, 1 in 5 Canadians experiences a mental health issue or addiction problem.”- Toronto: RiskAnalytica
  • “When they reach the age of 40 years, 1 in 2 have or had mental illness” - Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada.

A growing body of research supports the efficacy of Online CBT programs to combat depression, anxiety, and other psychiatric conditions.

In this article, we will discuss online CBT, its techniques, where it is used,  key features, and how you can start online cognitive behavioral therapy services in Canada with your own app.

What is Online Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

Online CBT offers most of the advantages of in-person CBT with the added advantage of flexibility, accessibility, and security.

It is the integration of information technology and psychological treatment that can be delivered under the supervision of a psychologist, therapist, or self-guidance. 

Online CBT platforms that provide access to evidence-based psychological treatment are more efficient, safe, cost-effective, and consistent.

How do Online CBT Services Work?

Online CBT works differently from the traditional CBT approaches only in terms of technology used such as internet-based, smartphone app delivered, self-guidance, and awareness programs (group education)  but the core principle focuses on the same cycle of thoughts, behavior, and emotions.

Here is a closer look at how thoughts and emotions can change your behavior:

  • Negative thoughts contribute to emotional stress and mental issues
  • Such thoughts and emotional distress often stimulate harmful or self-destructive behavior
  • Continuously engaging yourself in the self distinctive activities or behavior can result in a pattern that repeats itself.

Getting rid of such negative thoughts and learning techniques to change these patterns can help you take care of your mental health and avoid future distress.

So, how can anyone break this cycle and work on improving its overall well-being?

CBT Techniques

Online CBT can be delivered in conjunction with different techniques. Your therapist will help you to find which technique can solve your problem. 

The goal of these techniques is to replace your irrelevant, destructive, and unuseful thoughts with relevant, encouraging, and realistic ones. 

Here are some of the most popular CBT techniques:

  • Cognitive restructuring and reframing
  • Guided Discovery
  • Exposure therapy
  • Stress inoculation
  • Relaxing training
  • Mindful cognitive therapy
  • Activity scheduling and behavioral activation
  • Role-Playing 
  • Successive approximation.

How Does It Help?

CBT helps with a range of mental health conditions that include:

  • Depression, phobia, and anxiety
  • Behavioral disorders such as overeating, substance addictions
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Bipolar disorder

However, it is not mandatory to have any mental disorder to get the advantage of online CBT.

It also helps to deal with the general stressful situations in life such as the loss of a loved one, suffering from chronic disease or cancer, insomnia, relationship issues, and other related similar issues. 

How Can You Provide Evidence-Based Online CBT Services Through the Mobile App?

Designing and developing an evidence-based online CBT program involves lots of research and planning, but it becomes easier if you precisely decide on the demographic area and the user persona. 

If you want to build a CBT application for the Canadian people, it’s important to determine their needs and interests.

Further, get a clear idea about whether you are creating an entire CBT solution or want to build a mental health awareness application platform with counseling support as a part of the therapeutic process.

Essential factors to consider to maximize the clinical outcome in online CBT application: 

An online CBT solution doesn’t mean replacing a clinical caregiver.

In fact, it empowers providers to reach and monitor maximum patients and deliver CBT therapy through effective tools. 

To maximize the clinical outcome of your application, consider implementing the following things in your app:

  • Build  Patient-provider relationships through maximum interactions 
  • Set activities/ plans for tackling mental illness and track patient adherence 
  • Set rewards for maximum adherence  

Key features of Online CBT application (entire solution to deliver CBT therapies): 

If you are building the entire CBT solution you need to add the following features. 

  • User/ patient segmentation through profiling
  • Client/ provider segmentation and profiling
  • Self-assessment to determine your current health state 
  • Gateway to find and choose your therapist  
  • Client-patient portal for interaction  
  • Customizable therapy/ plan designer for therapist, counselor, or psychologist
  • Personalize storage for the patients and providers
  • Integration of real-time result tracking, analysis tools, and report generator with a sharing option
  • HIPAA complicates storage for clients for patients' confidentiality
  • Notification prompts and updates
  • Online content for patient awareness
  •  Gamification of activities and rewards on maximum adherence to therapy
  • Emergency connect to therapist option
  • Chat, video calling, and session recording

These features may vary depending on the user persona you are targeting. 

Highly Ranked Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Apps

1. Better help

The app is tailored to deliver an experience like traditional therapy. 

Rating: 3.6 K 

Stars: 4.6


  • The largest network of licensed therapists and personalized counselor matching features.
  •  Secure one-to-one communication with your therapist
  • Flexible Live Session Scheduler for interaction  with the therapist
  • Access to educational material and webinars to improve mental health awareness 

2. Sanvello

It provides on-demand help for stress anxiety and depression.

Rating: 18.3K

Stars: 4.8


  • Free access to health plans
  • Guides self-care
  • Sanvello community support: Participate in the discussion board and chat group in the community.
  • Provides traditional Therapy online which matches your licensed clinician.
  • Online coaching gives you proper direction and motivation in your mental health journey. 
  • Support apple health

3. MindShift

It is a CBT app for anxiety relief.

Rating: 252

Stars: 4.3


  • CBT based tools 
  • Assures quick relief
  • Community support 
  • Thought Journal
  • Coping Cards 

Get Local Canadian Tech, Business, and Compliance Help to Take Your Therapy Practice Online with Your Branded App 

Though Online CBT therapy has been around for a while it found that only a few apps are finding their way to become successful. 

Hopefully, this article gives you a clear idea about online  CBT, the techniques it uses in mental health treatment, the way it works, and key features you need to include in the app to make it effective.

If you are fascinated by the idea of a CBT app, we are well-equipped with experts, expertise, and experience to help you achieve your first app. 

Our team includes healthcare app developers, UI/UX designers, business analysts, compliance specialists, and QA engineers who have hands-on experience building healthcare solutions. 

If you are looking for that only reason, we would like to tell you, we understand healthcare.

It is in our DNA.

Because we have only been dealing with healthcare projects for more than 7 years!