Online searches via Google on anxiety tripled while those relating to depression increased by half, compared with just five years ago.
People prefer to turn to the internet rather than their doctor for medical advice, it has been revealed in research by private medical provider BUPA.
Inquiries into stress soared, reaching an all-time high in March, while searches for information relating to back pain were three times higher in January compared with the same month five years ago.
People are also worried about dementia and diabetes – searches have doubled in the last five years
BUPA discovered via poll – not directly with information from Google – that four in five people turn to the internet for advice.
Most (84 per cent) said they find they are confronted with conflicting information leaving them confused and sometimes even more anxious.
Dr Paula Franklin, medical director for Bupa UK, said: ‘It is hardly surprising that people are feeling confused and frustrated when looking for health advice online, given the amount of information out there.
“People want to know more about their health and well-being than ever before so it is essential that they know where to get trusted and clinically approved advice, and are aware of the risks of reading unqualified health information.
“There is a clear need for more help in navigating healthcare information online.”
Meanwhile, anxiety searches tripled and those relating to depression increased by half, the survey revealed.
Meanwhile, anxiety searches tripled and those relating to depression increased by half, the survey revealed