Joie: a wearable brain interface for detecting joy


Purewow 2020

Purewow 2020

Society is experiencing a growing challenge of mental health and wellbeing. This year, 32.3% of U.S. adults or over 100 million individuals reported symptoms of anxiety or depression, with higher rates among younger individuals, the highest being 45.4% for individuals aged 18 to 29 years.

Neurofeedback have been shown to be effective in improving symptoms of anxiety and depression. However, these systems have been confined to laboratory studies and not designed with human factors in mind. With Joie, we adapt cutting-edge neurofeedback research for anxiety and depression into a fun, engaging game, playable with a wearable headband. 

In a placebo-controlled validation study,  we found that users playing Joie were able to significantly improve brain activity in the left prefrontal region, associated with reduced symptoms of anxiety and depression. With these results, we are creating a game that helps to teach individuals how to activate brain signals associated with less anxiety and depression.