This device offers mental health solutions from the comfort of your home – Edexlive

It was while she was studying at IIIT Delhi that a shocking incident with her friend and roommate changed Ramya Yellapragadathe point of view of Mental Health. Her roommate had unsuccessfully attempted suicide and Ramya knew she just wanted to help him in any way she could. “I talked to her and tried to figure out what she was facing. She was depressed and the antidepressants she was taking were not helping,” Ramya recalls. Piqued curiosity and the desire to help her friend prompted Ramya to learn about behavioral science in college. “I started taking online classes because I wanted to understand how the brain worked at those times. I learned that it was a combination of chemical and electrical impulses. Anti-anxiety drugs or Antidepressants did not solve these problems, ”says Ramya. She needed to find an alternative.

Shortly after graduating, Ramya chose to continue her research in mental health. “Instead of working, I decided to go to Plaksha University,” says Ramya. It was at the Tech Leaders Program here that Ramya decided to launch his start-up called StimVeda. “I have met several doctors, neuroscientists and other like-minded people who guided my co-founder and myself to launch the start-up,” she adds.

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Ramya Yellapragada and Lakshay Sahni, co-founders, StimVeda

So what does StimVeda do? “We have developed a device which is currently being tested at AIIMS Delhi. It is the first line of treatment for people with mental health problems before taking medication,” says Ramya, computer science graduate. and in computational biology from the IIIT. After completing the basic course in Plaksha, Ramya also enrolled in the entrepreneurship program. “My co-founder, Lakshay Sahni, was also in neuroscience and had done projects with neuroscience and artificial intelligence during his studies. We met at Plaksha University and decided to start the business together.” , explains Ramya.

The device looks like a headband that must be worn and to which a mobile application is connected. “The treatment can be done at home and is as effective as many drugs on the market. The user wears the headband for a completely non-invasive brain stimulation procedure for 30 minutes in the morning and in the evening for a period of 10 days,” says Ramya. The application tracks the performance of the device. After the initial 10-day period, users can wear it again once or twice a week as needed. “The app also suggests certain tasks the user should perform while wearing the headband to initiate proper stimulation,” says the 24-year-old.

The product will soon be mass-produced, Ramya says, and hit the market by July 2022. StimVeda, which is based in Gurugram, is incubated at NASSCOM’s Center of Excellence for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence. “The technology we are using is not new. Brain stimulation has been approved in various countries in Europe and in countries such as South Korea, Singapore and Australia. We are among the first to provide treatment at home in India, ”says Ramya, adding that the technology was developed after 30 years of research.

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