Techno-cures no match for human touch

Logic will get you from A to B – imagination will take you everywhere’  > So said Albert Einstein and indeed imagination has created some and weird and wonderful therapies. It certainly needs a creative mind to come up with ideas like curing constipation with soap on a toothpick , smearing your feet in all all-purpose cleaner as foot cream and putting sour milk in your vagina to restore your PH balance (still, preferable to yoni steaming!)

But such folklore remedies are so yesterday when techno-health is taking us to destinations previously beyond our imagination. For example, London based spatial design studio Loop.pH creates visionary experiences on the theme of near and far futures.

Their current Mind Pilot, on display this month at the London Design Museum, lets you pilot a huge airship using just the power of your mind. Using electroencephalogram (EEG) technology, the designers believe that by seeing in your mind how it can impact a physical object, you will experience feelings of relaxation.

All sounds rather reminiscent of the artist who set out to relax using helium balloons to float around Sydney Opera House.

Then there are chatbot therapies which we have reviewed on many occasions. Now founder of ‘Execs with Soul’ Danielle Owen Whitford has entered the fray with a A1 chatbox to reduce workplace stress. It uses machine learning and natural language matching to identify and reduce stress in the workplace.

Also advocating diversion therapy, she says, “Emotions are a tricky thing. They can come upon you when you least expect it and swamp you in ways you can’t imagine. They bring you the highest of highs, then plunge you into darkness in a moment

And that is the rub. Emotions are tricky and thus best handled by people who have them!

Despite technology advances in medicine, including through robotics, stem cell research and nanotechnology, techno healing will never replace the need for human touch.  The reason low-tech complementary therapies grow in popularity is because they offer what biomedicine does not. Namely a personal, holistic and inexpensive approach to healing.

So we old fogies at Tonic make no apologies for being out of step with algorithm-based healing. If you want old fashioned one-to-one therapy then you know who to phone and we promise you will never speak to therapy robot.

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