These thoughtful mental health gifts can help you provide support for a loved one when they need it most.
When someone in your family or circle of friends is struggling, it can be difficult to think of the right way to show them you care. You may not want to give them a gift that says, “hey, I know you’re depressed,” because, well, that’s depressing. But something soothing for their home or bath, or a mindfulness workbook, or a shirt that addresses mental health through humor, could be exactly what they need to help them get through a tough time. (And if “them” is you, shopping for mental health gifts for yourself, you’re awesome too! Self-care is not selfish.)
We’ve compiled this diverse list of items that provide comfort, motivation, and self-care. We’re sure you’ll find a heartfelt way to let your loved one know they’re not alone in their journey.
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Mental Health Gifts for Mindfulness and Meditation
Mindfulness and meditation can be tremendously helpful for processing anxiety and trauma, but getting started and learning to focus can be challenging for many people. These mental health gifts can help your loved one begin or grow in their mindfulness journey.
Tone Therapy Speakers
Binaural sound can be a powerful mindfulness aid. These speakers make it easy to incorporate mindfulness into even a very busy day.
Morphee Meditation and Sleep Device
There are a million meditation apps and some of them are excellent — but they all keep you tied to your phone and could be interrupted by a text or call. If you really want to unplug, the Morphee is totally offline and includes a wide variety of built-in meditation and wind-down sessions. If your loved one struggles with insomnia, minimizing screen time at bedtime is important, and this handy sleep device could made a tremendous difference.
Breathing Buddha Meditation Helper
The Breathing Buddha uses color to help the user practice the 4/7/8 mindfulness breathing technique. It promotes relaxation and sleep and is an affordable mental health gift for adults and older children.
These therapist-endorsed cards teach mindfulness skills your family member or friend can use in their everyday life.
Metaphoric Associative Cards
Metaphorical association cards are not the same as tarot cards. They don’t purport to predict the future or make decisions for the person reading them. Instead, they present evocative images that are open to interpretation and encourage self-exploration. They can be used alone or to spark meaningful conversations with a partner or friend. You can see more card packs at Brain Ukraine.
I must admit I’m not too keen on affirmations in general. They can come across as cloying or as toxic positivity — but these affirmation cards are the exception. They’re honest, funny, and genuinely hopeful, and make an excellent mental health gift for somebody who likes to keep things positive and real.
These textured stickers provide tactile feedback to assist with mindful breathing and relaxation wherever your loved one goes.
Mental Health Gifts for Skin, Body, and Wellness
Depression and anxiety can cause or exacerbate muscle stiffness, pain, fatigue, headaches, and other physical ailments, especially for people with a co-occuring chronic illness or physical disability. The mind-body connection is profound, and items that help your relative or friend to care for their body can be ideal mental health gifts.
Bath Bombs or Shower Steamers
Taking a relaxing hot bath or shower can calm anxiety and panic attacks and reduce stress.
Spa Gift Set
These gift boxes allow your loved one to create their own spa experience at home. Lavender is a particularly soothing herb or essential oil that promotes relaxation and sleep.
Massage bars made with lotion and herbs are useful for moisturizing dry skin and working the knots out of muscles after a stressful day.
Foot Spa and Epsom Salts
If your loved one doesn’t have a bathtub or can’t get in and out of a tub easily due to their age or disability, this surprisingly affordable foot bath paired with a bag of Epsom salts can enable them to soothe their tired and painful feet.
Mental Health Gifts for Awareness and Fighting Stigma
Many people with mental illness find strength and healing in becoming an advocate. If your family member or friend is on this path, they’ll enjoy these mental health gifts that fight stigma and promote awareness and understanding.
Mental Health Sweatshirt
Mental Health T-Shirt
Mental Health Stickers
Mental Health Gifts for the Home
These mental health gifts will make your loved one’s home more relaxing and comfortable so they can better manage anxiety, depression, and other difficult symptoms.
Weighted blankets have become popular for a reason — they work! I find mine to be extremely useful for calming panic attacks and the sensory overload I experience as a neurodivergent person. They’re also on the more expensive side, so if you have a family member or friend who can’t work or work much due to mental illness, a weighted blanket could be an especially meaningful gift.
Himalayan Salt Lamp
Himalayan salt lamps are one of those items you see in every shopping guide and are perhaps a bit cliche. However, this lamp stands out from the rest as it includes removable massage balls your gift recipient can rub on their skin to relieve those miserable anxiety-induced muscle cramps. If you use an incandescent bulb in the salt lamp, it’ll heat them up, too!
Bean Bag Chair
It’ll be like embracing your loved one with a warm hug every time they sink into this bean bag chair.
Your loved one doesn’t have to be pregnant to enjoy sleeping with this soft body pillow to soothe their physical and emotional aches and pains.
Books and Workbooks That Make Great Mental Health Gifts
If your loved one is on a healing journey of introspection, these mental health gifts can help them journal, process, and grow.
Body Positivity Book
“The Body Is Not an Apology” is a revolutionary book for women and others who have been taught by society to hate their bodies. If your loved one is healing from an eating disorder or abusive relationship, the book and related workbook could be transformative.
Radical Self-Care Book
This book gets to the heart of what self-care is truly about, and it’s not bubble baths and fuzzy socks.
Journal for Creatives
If your loved one uses art to process their mental health struggles, they’ll love this journal that encourages them to wreck it as a form of self-expression.
Guided Journal for Overthinkers
I’m an overthinker and most meditation and mindfulness activities don’t work well for me. If your friend or relative is similar, this guided journal may be just what they need too!
Irreverent Guided Journal
As I said, I’m also not big on cheesy affirmations, and if your loved one tells it like it is or has a snarky sense of humor, they’ll appreciate this guided journal as an alternative to the usual motivational fare.
Didn’t find what you need on this list? Try our guide to self-care boxes.
Do you have recommendations for mental health gifts?
Please share them in the comments.
Founder and Editor-in-Chief of The Ability Toolbox. I received my BA in English from Stanford University and MA in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University Los Angeles, and have worked in entertainment and health media for over 20 years. As a wheelchair user with cerebral palsy, I am deeply committed to amplifying the voices of the disability community through writing and advocacy.
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