12 Great Stress Relief Apps for Caregivers

stress relief app

We love our loved ones more than anything, but some days, the pressure of caregiving can weigh us down. According to the Family Care Alliance Group, some 43.5 million of us have cared for a loved one within the last twelve months. Often those duties are piled on top of the responsibilities we currently have in raising our own families.

So, for all of those times when the stress gets to you, you might consider turning to one of these 12 stress relief apps that are ideal for caregivers.

1. Destressify

Developed by Stress Refuge, Inc., this app focuses on the science of stress relief. The app’s creators say that in four weeks, this program, which balances prevention, calming exercises, emotional growth, relaxation, energy-building exercises, will lower your stress levels by 20 percent.

The free app for iOS and Android users (there’s also Pro, an expanded version available for a fee) shows calming techniques, visualization exercises, meditation sessions, and nutrition suggestions. Designed by experts, this app explores why we respond to outside stimuli and helps users identify things that trigger stressful responses.

Get the app:

2. Daily Yoga

This mobile app for Android means you can do a session of yoga anytime, anyplace. With a library of over 100 different meditation and yoga classes and over 500 yoga poses, this app provides guided yoga sessions for everyone from beginners to those with advanced abilities, and it offers sessions ranging from five minutes to over an hour. When you can’t get away, let yoga come to you with this free, easy-to-use app.

Get the app:

3. Colorfy

With coloring books are making a resurgence to soothe overstressed adults, Apple and Android are responding with digital forms of coloring books apps. This free app allows users to choose from categories like floral, landscape, patterns, animals, etc. And they can choose from brushes, gradient colors, and harmonious color palettes. The process is easy and the mood-lifting colors are vibrant. Plus, the app allows users to work offline, so no WIFI is required to express your creativity.

Get the app:

4. Amazon Prime

With 63 million subscribers, Amazon Prime members actually outnumber non-Prime members. As part of that subscription, members have access to countless videos and music, so if you have a few free moments to spend on yourself, why not tune into a yoga video, a comedy, a quick session of Pilates, or enjoy a relaxing track from the vast collection of genres cataloged in the music library?

Get the app:

5. Peggle Blast

I must warn you, this app, available on both Android and iTunes, is addicting! But it offers the perfect distraction when you’re waiting for your loved one to finish seeing the doctor, or if you simply need a mental break from the day’s demands. The challenge is to turn the pegs orange before you run out of balls. But, the real challenge is to try putting the game down.

Get the app:

6. Pacifica

Day by day, this app will help users learn how to track and manage stress, anxiety and depression at their own pace. The app gives you psychologist-designed tools based on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. At a time when the health of your loved one is taking top priority, this app reminds you that your health and emotional wellness is important, too.

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7. Lumosity

While other apps offer mental and emotional support, Lumosity is designed to keep your brain functioning sharp. Designed around a series of more than 30 games, this app strengthens cognitive skills through challenges, puzzles, and other game platforms. It’s entertaining as well as therapeutic. Lumosity is available in both Android and iTunes.

Get the app:

8. Boomerang

As a popular medium for Instagram posts, this app takes live video and wraps it to create an animated post that is sure to delight. It’s a fun way to include your loved one, too. For example, if family members want to know how your loved one is doing, use this app to let them see for themselves.

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9. Relax Melodies: Sleep Sounds

One of the casualties of caregiving is the inevitable lack of sleep. But this app is designed to help users maximize their sleep by offering customized melodies designed to help with specific sleep situations. You can select melodies to combat stress and anxiety, encourage quality naptime, deep sleep, or to soothe insomnia. Best of all, you can use it for your loved one, too. There are 52 sleep sounds in the catalog, including white noises and melodies. This free app is available for both Android and Apple.

Get the app:

10. Netflix

Although Netflix is already well known, the true mobility it offers is often underutilized. With subscription fees ranging from $8 to $10 dollars per month, caregivers and loved ones can stream original programs, classic movies, current releases, live concerts, and everything in between. Users can watch on either an Android and iPhone smartphone.

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11. Cross Stitch World

When the majority of caregiving requires hours of concentration and patience, this app appeals to those needing some peaceful, creative and soothing busywork. You can enjoy six image themes, which are updated weekly, or you can upload an image of your own to cross-stitch. This free app is available in both Android and iTunes.

Get the app:

12. Acts of Kindness

At times, the best path to stress relief is seeing things from a different perspective. Random Acts of Kindness is free app for both Android and iTunes that offers daily quotes and unique ideas for spreading optimism and kindness. When your life as a caregiver starts to feel overwhelming, this app is nice reminder of a broader scope of service and caring.

Get the app:

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As family caregivers, we want to provide the best care possible for those we love. By keeping our own stress, anxiety and depression in check, we can better maintain our own health so we can be there to monitor our loved one's well-being.


Dr. Amy Osmond Cook

Amy Osmond Cook is executive director of the Association of Skilled Nursing Providers, and is a regular health and wellness contributor to the Orange County Register, Daily Herald, Senior Scene, Senior Housing Forum and more. See full bio