Young Malaysians Show Moderate Mental Health, Study Reveals

Malaysia mental health

A recent study by the Institute for Youth Research Malaysia (IYRES) has highlighted that the overall mental health of Malaysian youths is moderately satisfactory.

According to the Malaysian Youth Mental Health Index 2023 (MyMHI23), young individuals aged between 15 and 30 scored an average of 71.91. This figure provides early indications of potential mental health challenges within this demographic.

Study Details

The MyMHI23 surveyed 5,867 Malaysian youths, assessing various aspects of mental health across seven domains. They are: lifestyle, environment, personal characteristics, life experiences, social support, coping mechanisms, and a healthy mind. Notably, the lifestyle domain scored the highest at 88.51, indicating a satisfactory level of wellbeing. In contrast, the environmental domain scored the lowest at 65.45, pointing to moderate satisfaction and suggesting areas for improvement.

Key Findings

The moderate score of 71.91 on the MyMHI23 serves as a crucial marker for the mental health of Malaysian youths. It indicates that a majority are at a satisfactory level. However, there are underlying risks that could potentially escalate without appropriate interventions. The disparity between the highest scores in lifestyle domains and the lowest in environmental factors underscores the varying influences on mental well-being. This differentiation highlights the need for targeted strategies to enhance environments that youths find themselves in daily.

Government and Ministerial Response

The report was officially launched by Youth and Sports Minister Hannah Yeoh. It emphasises the government’s commitment to addressing these issues among the youth. Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad also attended the launch. He remarked on the importance of this index in shaping future health policies. The ministers discussed potential government-led initiatives to improve services and environments for young Malaysians, reflecting a proactive approach to better wellness.

Recommendations and Future Steps 

MyMHI23 recommends several key interventions to promote better mental health among youths. These include creating less crowded living spaces, enhancing basic amenities, and ensuring easy access to mental health services. The report also stresses the importance of promoting healthy lifestyles, such as proper nutrition and regular physical activity. In collaboration with UNICEF and other stakeholders, these recommendations aim to foster a supportive environment conducive to mental well-being.


The Malaysian Youth Mental Health Index 2023 is a pioneering tool that provides valuable insights into the mental health landscape of Malaysian youths. It underscores the necessity for ongoing research and adaptation of health policies to meet the evolving needs of young populations. As mental health awareness grows, the index will play a vital role in the early detection of potential mental health issues. It will aid in the timely intervention and support for Malaysia’s youth.

Additional Information

For a deeper understanding of the current status among Malaysian youths and detailed insights into the findings, the full MyMHI23 report is available for download at IYRES official website.

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