Video game solution helps children build emotion regulation skills

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound affect on everyone, particularly children with emotional health concerns. Many support structures in place prior to the pandemic to help children thrive have disappeared or been changed significantly, resulting in increased pressure on caretakers and overwhelming stress for children. New and innovative solutions are needed to meet these challenges. Magellan Healthcare’s Emotional Health for Kids by Mightier is a clinically proven video game solution that helps children build emotion regulation skills through play and caregivers build emotionally healthy homes.

Developed at Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Mightier helps children ages 6 to 14 who are struggling with emotional health concerns, such as irritability, aggression, and anger, as well as children diagnosed with oppositional defiant disorder, attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder, autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and general anxiety disorder.

Mightier’s impact on children’s emotional health

In a pilot program, Magellan provided members access to the Mightier program for a period of twelve weeks during the COVID-19 pandemic. Families were recruited and randomized into a group that received Mightier in addition to applied behavior analysis (ABA), or a group that received only ABA as a control.

  • Children engaged with Mightier at a high rate. On average, Mightier families played for 30.4 minutes above the 30 minutes per week recommended to see clinical change.
  • Clinical symptoms improved. Eighty percent of children with ASD who used Mightier showed an improvement on primary symptoms, compared to only 50% in the control group.
  • Children showed twice as much decrease in aggressive behaviors. Adding Mightier to ABA resulted in a reduction in aggressive behavior in children with autism by twice as much compared to ABA alone.
  • Families reported a less stressful and more supportive environment. Families using Mightier showed 50% improvement in family stress, 114% improvement in parent confidence, and 114% improvement in access to resources relative to control.

Visit  Magellanhealthcare.com/kids-emotions-mightier/ to learn more about the pilot and how Mightier helps children build self-regulation skills and supports caregivers in building emotionally healthy homes.

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