Essential oils and herbal teas are the most popular ways of DIY stress-relief for Malaysians.
Malaysians are super stressed out, no doubt about it. As the rakyat try to pick up the pieces of our lives and carry on, it seems that more and more people are taking their mental health seriously and are taking steps to destress.
In fact, according to CodeBlue, our suicide rates have almost doubled compared to last year and the year before, increasing from a 1.7 daily suicide rate to a whopping 3.0. At highest risk are Selangor, Labuan, and Sarawak residents, as these states record the most suicide-related searches.
What are Malaysians doing about it?
According to iPrice Malaysia, Google searches for mental health services more than doubled in the first five months of 2021 compared to 2019. There was a 109% increase in professional mental healthcare treatment, such as therapy sessions with psychologists or psychiatrists.
This later translated to a 108% increase in mental health therapy mobile apps searches. The e-commerce aggregator tracked interest in a handful of mental health apps according to VeryWellMind.
The meditation app Headspace was most popular in Malaysia, followed by therapy app Talkspace, while mood tracker app MoodMission experienced the largest increase of searches at 800%.
However, most Malaysians have also turned to DIY solutions for stress relief, in search of stress relief products touted to reduce anxiety.
Malaysians searched mainly for essential oils, herbal teas, and scented candles; followed by adult colouring books, weighted blankets, and therapy lamps. Surprisingly, back and neck massagers came in last.
In all categories, interest in 2021 is higher than in 2020 except for adult colouring books and essential oils, by a small margin.
Things are understandably difficult for the rakyat nowadays, but the people are coping with it the best they can.
Anne is an advocate of sustainable living and the circular economy, and has managed to mum-nag the team into using reusable containers to tapau food. She is also a proud parent of 4 cats and 1 rabbit.