Searching for Anxiety? Google Data Shows You are Not Alone

searching for anxiety

You are not alone. People are searching the internet every single day for comfort, information and anything to feel like they’re not alone. In a world where we don’t feel like we can reach out to those around us, we turn to Google.

Before I reach out to someone else with what I’m feeling, I consult Google. I just need to do a quick search of the internet to confirm that I’m not crazy or dying from a panic attack. I browse through some mental health resources, and then I feel better.

And thanks to my job (I’m an SEO specialist but more on that later), I now know I’m not the only one. People are searching for “anxiety” every single day. The search results data shows that we are so far from alone in our pain and uncertainty. In fact, we are part of thousands of others.

Often when we’re anxious, we feel alone. We think we are the only ones feeling the way that we do. I decided to start this blog because I felt that way. But more and more people are speaking out about their anxiety and mental health.


Feeling Anxious? Just Google It

People are searching Google every single day for anything that comes to mind. The good, the bad and the ugly, Google’s search bar sees it all. The sheer amount of data collected and processed by the search engine is unfathomable. Google has an all-access pass to the inner workings of people’s brains.

Just a bit of background on me, I work as a Search Engine Optimization specialist. This is basically just a fancy way of saying that I use fancy techniques to get companies to show up in search results. I make sure that when you’re googling something, my clients are the ones answering your questions.

I research what people are searching for online every day. And prior to this blog, I was focused on topics like “where to buy shoes” or “best car insurance providers”.

However, when I was researching topics to write about for this blog, I came across data that I’d never seen before. When dealing with search queries, 1000 is considered a lot of monthly searches. But with topics like “anxiety” and “depression”, I had never seen such high numbers.

google search

What Are We Searching For?

Google was created for us to search. It is a wealth of knowledge and information. But it is also more than that. It is proof that we are not alone. There is someone thinking or feeling similarly to us. On the other side of a screen somewhere, someone is in pain and reaching out to a search engine for answers or perhaps even comfort.

But saying “you are not alone” often isn’t enough. We still feel alone. We don’t have proof that there are others feeling like us.

Well, below, you will find the proof.

Note: The data was collected from ahrefs on 20 June 2022.

searching for anxiety

Searching for Information, Comfort or Validation

No matter what we’re looking for, we’re together in our search. For some reason, we trust Google. We believe no matter what we type in, we won’t be judged. And if we really want to conceal ourselves, we can go through a VPN or use incognito.

We bare our souls to our search engine of choice, and the data below shows just that.

Below you can see the monthly global searches for each query typed into Google.

  • Mental Health Resources: 11K monthly searches
  • Highly Sensitive Person: 54K monthly searches
  • Nervous Breakdown: 65K monthly searches
  • How to stop intrusive thoughts: 11K monthly searches
  • Catastrophizing: 42K monthly searches
  • Chemical imbalance: 7K monthly searches
  • Panic Attack: 433K monthly searches
  • Depression: 1.4M monthly searches
  • Social anxiety: 249K monthly searches
  • Anxiety: 1.5M monthly searches
  • Agoraphobia: 703K monthly searches
  • Emetophobia: 178K monthly searches
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: 161K monthly searches
  • ADHD: 2.3M monthly searches
  • Dissociation: 315K monthly searches
  • Derealization: 242K monthly searches

Suicide-Related Queries: Trigger Warning

The internet is a wonderful place full of possibilities. But it is also dark and miserable, full of bad stuff and things we’d rather ignore. The results below are heartbreaking. It’s one thing to be told that suicide rates are climbing, but seeing the numbers hurts.

The results can be hidden, so if you don’t want to see them, close the tab and just keep scrolling.

  • Suicide: 687K monthly searches
  • How to kill yourself: 167K monthly searches
  • How to commit suicide: 19K monthly searches
  • I want to die: 131K monthly searches
  • How to die: 135K monthly searches
  • Suicidal thoughts: 45K monthly searches

searching darkness

Fortunately, when it comes to these types of queries, the websites that show up on the front page are usually mental health resources. Because often, when searching for topics like these, we aren’t searching for the answers to the questions we are asking. Rather we want to be shown that we don’t want the answer.

Searching the Real World

The internet shows that human suffering is global. It is heavy and dark, but the results that come up when you express your pain offer a light that shows the strengths of humanity. But it is not enough to just have support on a search results page. Conversations need to happen in real life.

There is a lot of stigma around mental health, depression and anxiety. And for a long time, it has been shoved under the rug. But when Covid-19 came around, the rug got pulled away. Covid sucked, but it has brought the topic of mental health to the foreground. It shone a light on our mutual humanity.

People who appeared to be perfectly content working away day in and day out were brought to their knees by the lockdown. Covid was horrific, but it made us stop for a minute and gave us space to speak.We owe it to ourselves to keep speaking. The search results show that there is so much pain out there. We are not alone, and it is up to us to step off the page, put down our phones and search the real world.

looking for answers

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