Originally published by 2 Minute Medicine® (view original article). Reused on AccessMedicine with permission.

1. In this scoping review, children, adolescents, and parents demonstrated a positive attitude toward digital health interventions (DHI) for mental health problems, with only three studies indicating a preference for in-person interventions.

2. Users also indicated that DHIs were easy to use, flexible, and had customizable features.

Evidence Rating Level: 1 (Excellent)

With the growing prevalence of mental health disorders worldwide, the use of digital health interventions (DHIs) has been explored as a cost-effective approach to address the increased needs of the population. Currently, there is a lack of evidence examining the attitudes and perceptions of those using DHIs, particularly in children and adolescents. As a result, the objective of the present study was to characterize the perspectives of children, adolescents, and their parents towards DHIs for mental health problems.

Of 1,548 identified records, 30 studies were included from various databases from 2007-2021. Studies were included if they investigated children, adolescents, or parental attitudes toward DHIs for mental health problems. Studies were excluded if their primary objective did not concern usage, preferences, or attitudes regarding DHIs, if the intervention was designed for parents of children, or if the study only explored the perspectives of healthcare professionals. The review was performed using PRISMA-ScR guidelines. The primary outcome was the attitudes of children, adolescents, or their parents toward DHIs for mental health problems.

The results demonstrated that children and adolescents had positive attitudes toward DHIs and mostly preferred DHIs, with only three studies showing a preference for in-person interventions. In addition, children, adolescents, and parents were satisfied with DHIs through their ease of use, flexibility, and customizable features. Despite these results, the study was limited by the heterogenous methodologies used in the included studies, which may have impacted the findings. Nonetheless, the present study added important information supporting the use of DHIs in children and adolescents.

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