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Posted on October 14, 2021 by  & 

Facemask Could Help Reduce Mental Distress

Facemask Could Help Reduce Mental Distress
eScent has showcased the first use of its transformative facemask tech with innovative scent delivery system. eScent has completed its first concept project to develop a re-usable, enhanced FFP3 facemask which offers "personalised protection assurance" via a patented self-administered scent delivery system to help reduce mental distress.
The transformative tech company - who were funded by a £175,000 Innovate UK Sustainable Innovation Fund Award - is leading a new category in the digital olfaction domain: wearable platform technology with the ability to create individual transformative wellbeing experiences. According to the mental health charity, MIND, one in four people will experience a mental health problem of some kind each year in England, while one in six will experience a common mental health problem such as anxiety and depression in any given week. For further information see the IDTechEx report on Wearable Technology Forecasts 2021-2031.
Following the pandemic, rates of addiction and suicide are at an all-time high, and loneliness has reached epidemic proportions. According to the World Health Organisation, an estimated 500 million people globally suffer from anxiety and depression.
The wearing of facemasks certainly hasn't helped the situation. As many of us experienced first-hand during lockdown restrictions, facemasks are uncomfortable to wear. They retain moisture, irritate the skin and create psychological barriers, as well as triggering panic and breathing problems.
As the pandemic progressed, this had a negative psychological impact on NHS workers especially, with many experiencing PTSD, anxiety, depression and burn-out. According to a BMA Survey of 7000 doctors during the pandemic, 44% of doctors said that they were suffering from depression, anxiety/stress, or other mental health condition made worse by their work.
 
 
On top of this the use of one-time-use PPE is devastating ecosystems and polluting oceans. Approximately 129 billion disposable masks, mostly made from plastic microfibres, and 65 billion disposable gloves have been used every month during the pandemic, according to a study in the journal Environmental Science and Technology. This collective anxiety, combined with growing environmental emergencies, provides opportunities to build a more nurturing society with global consciousness. To that end, eScent partnered with The Imagination Factory and Anchored-IN to develop a re-usable enhanced FFP3 facemask which offers "personal protective assurance" - that is, a personalized and renewable scent as a self-delivered biofeedback intervention for mental distress.
Protected by several awarded and pending patents, eScent is a product concept that integrates hardware, software and a subscription-based fragrance service as a catalyst to improve health, emotional wellbeing, and performance.
 
eScent founder, Jenny Tillotson says: "We are on a mission to help humanity recover from the pandemic and to reconnect with our most primitive of senses - our sense of smell. eScent can be integrated into multiple different form factors, leading to many uses and benefits. This is just the start of what is going to be a very exciting 18 months as we miniaturise the delivery system and look forward to building partnerships in a variety of markets including the wellbeing, fashiontech, protection, entertainment and psychedelic medicine sectors."
 
 
Source and top image: eScent
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