Cover Photo: Instagram/Shakti Acupressure Mat

In honour of World Mental Health Day on October 10, here are some items that will totally help you reduce your stress levels

With Singapore’s Covid-19 cases soaring, work from home becoming the default and our restrictions constantly evolving, we won’t blame you if your stress and anxiety levels are at an all-time high right now. 

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Thankfully, we live in an era where we have fantastic and innovative solutions for issues that have plagued us for years.

This World Mental Health Day, we share with you five interesting items you never thought you needed to help combat your stress and anxiety.

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1. Weighted blankets

Weighted blankets have yet to become very popular in Singapore but if you have yet to hear of them or try these out yourselves, you are missing out. 

A weighted blanket is essentially a therapeutic blanket that can weigh anywhere from five to 30 pounds. It is intended to replicate deep pressure stimulation which can relax the nervous system and relieve pain.

They can also reduce nighttime levels of cortisol as well. Cortisol is a stress hormone that can really affect our sleep and bodily functions. 

You simply need to pick a blanket that is appropriate for your personal weight and needs and you are well on your way to the most relaxing sleep of your life. 

2. Acupressure mats

If you’ve only heard about acupressure mats from TikTok and Instagram, you probably think that they are simply a gimmick. 

However, they are actually incredible mats that can help relieve stress and tension, provide relief from back and neck pain, increase your blood circulation and improve your sleep quality. 

An acupressure mat, which is a long mat that comes with a neck pillow, in essence, is meant to produce similar results to an acupressure massage. Acupressure massages are typically used to release blocked energy around the body so that pain can be reduced or alleviated. 

With its plastic points, they can also be used on the neck, head, hands, or feet. If you are feeling particularly stressed, anxious or worn out, you can use the mat to help you relax and to even get better sleep because it can target pressure points associated with insomnia.

3. Adult colouring books

Colouring books are no longer just for kids. In fact, recently, there has been a huge influx of illustrators who are putting out adult colouring books that feature intricate designs that are aimed at reducing anxiety in adults. 

In fact, colouring is known to improve mindfulness and is actually used for people who are just beginning art therapy. 

You can check out some popular colouring books by illustrators such as Johanna Basford and Emma Farrarons for adult colouring books that are sure to help you unwind after a particularly stressful day. 

4. Foam rollers

Foam rollers are typically used during workouts or to relieve muscle tightness or soreness. However, did you know that they can also be used to give you relief from anxiety?

In fact, when you use a foam roller to help you get rid of tension and knots in your muscles, it can actually elevate your mood by increasing the levels of serotonin in your brain.

It can also improve circulation throughout your body and help you to oxygenate your blood by flushing out toxins from your body which will, in turn, reduce inflammation. 

This is really an all-in-one solution for a long day at work.

5. Fidget toys

If you tend to get anxious when you are forced to sit still during a meeting or to get work done, something that might help are fidget toys which are all the rage right now. 

Now don’t worry, these aren’t your typical kid-centric toys.

These toys cater to every type of worrier despite your age. In fact, no matter if you are more sensory or if you need a fidget toy that will be quiet and cause little to no distraction, you will certainly be able to find something. 

The best part is that since most of us are working from home, you can fidget in peace without worrying about anyone judging you.

Some of the most helpful fidget toys are popits which essentially works like silicone bubble wraps or magnetic rings that you can weave through your fingers.

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