The Growing Market of Mental Health and Wellness Startups

In recent years, terms like wellness tech and the health and wellness market have gained prominence, highlighting the rise of startups dedicated to mental health and well-being.

This trend reflects a societal shift towards recognising the crucial significance of nurturing our mental health with the same diligence as our physical well-being.

Delving deeper into this evolving landscape, one might wonder questions such as: What does this growing mental health and wellness market look like? What startups are actively shaping the sector? And is there still a growing market for mental health and wellness startups?

The Mental Health and Wellness Market

To begin with, let’s delve into the transformation of the mental health and wellness market.

From its origins, where advice might have been limited to medication or spending time outdoors to enhance mental well-being, this is now a market that has exploded into a vast expanse where people can reach out and find products and services tailored to intricately support their personal wellness goals.

In this evolution, technology has played a central role, with people increasingly turning to mobile apps, wearable trackers, private digital consultations, and other innovative products and services, giving rise to the term “wellness tech.”

Most people have probably heard of platforms such as Calm and Headspace, but this merely scratches the surface of this burgeoning industry. This expansive wellness market now provides individuals with accessible, personalised, and often cost-effective solutions to enhance their peace of mind.

Gone are the days when assistance was confined to GP offices or expensive private health options. Today, a wealth of alternative solutions are just a click away.

Why Is There A Growing Demand for Mental Health and Wellness Services

Though it may not have always been so highly valued, people have always taken some form of action to work on their mental health and well-being. So, why is it that particularly in recent years has there been such a notable surge in this market?

The answer isn’t as simple as pointing the finger at one thing. Multiple factors have likely contributed to the growing number of startups in this area.

The Digital Age & Social Media

To begin with, one could argue that the surge in social media usage and the growing reliance on smartphones has exacerbated mental health issues. Dependence on mobile phones and addiction to those long social media scrolls have been linked to disruptions in sleep patterns, and heightened levels of depression and anxiety, as reported by the National Institutes of Health.

Consequently, a notable rise in mental health challenges, particularly among younger people, has ensued. This may, in turn, have motivated people to seek help and ways to improve their mental health and wellness.

Self-Care Emphasis

So, with the arguable surge of mental health issues as a result of phone dependence and social media, more people have awoken to the importance of self-care.

Naturally, this surge in awareness has also prompted more research and scientific exploration into the subject. As a growing body of evidence reveals the negative impacts of excessive social media engagement, people have become more conscious of safeguarding themselves.

In response, people are actively striving to digitally detox, rediscover real-life connections, and find ways to ditch the late-night scrolls and constant mobile phone checks.


During the pandemic, everyone was stuck inside often unable to look after their physical health as they would like. But a lot of people also took a huge hit to their mental health during the pandemic. This likely triggered the far more accessible health and wellness market to expand when healthcare systems were already stretched to their limits.

Limits of the Healthcare System

While healthcare systems can provide extensive help in the realm of health and wellness, ultimately, these systems struggle to meet the demands. They are simply not equipped to deal with the overwhelming demands and lack of resources to effectively address patients managing stress, anxiety, and all the directly related, and often complicated, health issues.

Consequently, people are seeking alternative avenues for enhancing their health and well-being and are turning to the readily accessible online health and wellness market to do this. Here, they can explore novel approaches in pursuit of holistic well-being away from the conventional GP office.

High-Market Value

Simply put, individuals have always been willing to invest significantly in products or services they believe are beneficial to their health.

Of course, this is no new revelation; historically, people have made purchases based on the perceived benefits to their mental and physical well-being. Entrepreneurs entering the startup arena are well aware of this consumer behaviour and understand that establishing a thriving startup in the burgeoning health and wellness industry provides a promising foundation for a business venture.

Personalised Experience

Rather than opting for a visit to the doctor, individuals now have the option to take charge of their own solutions.

This approach feels more accessible and less intimidating, allowing people to comfortably explore solutions that resonate with them. Whether it’s through a subscription app, private online consultations, or stress-monitoring devices, individuals can easily seek out personalised solutions for their well-being.

Data-Driven Insights

While consulting a GP can be beneficial, once the session is over, healthcare systems lack ways to monitor your progress to really get to the bottom of an issue.

Numerous technology-driven health and wellness products address this issue by collecting data on users’ experiences, offering valuable insights into their well-being. Users may find this approach preferable for identifying patterns and tracking their progress, receiving personalised recommendations to optimise their overall wellness practices.

How Big Is The Mental Health and Wellness Market?

Regarding investment into startups within the market, as per the Digital Health and Wellness Market Size report, funding for mental health and wellness tech startups experienced an almost threefold increase from 2020 to 2022, propelling the overall wellness market to an annual figure nearing $5 trillion.

Tracxn’s findings further highlight a substantial surge in investments in technology for stress and anxiety management over the past two years, with a remarkable 196% increase for devices and 197% for wearables, representing the rapid rise in demand for startups within this space.

Moreover, regarding the market value, Business Wire predicts the global mental wellness market will reach $150 billion by 2028, with similar valuations being predicted in this space by like-minded publications.

Needless to say, as we move into 2024, the health and wellness market is poignantly set on an upward trajectory, and we can expect even more innovative and executive startups to launch into this space.