BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — Even if you don’t practice it, you’ve probably heard of the idea of ‘Retail Therapy’ — a method of feeling better that usually involves a lot of shopping. While it’s usually seen as a harmless way to get stressed out, this is unfortunately not the case.

Prices add up, and if recent findings are anything to go by, some people who partake in Retail Therapy really can’t afford to be doing so. and amidst what many consider to be a mental health crisis in the US, it’s more common than ever.

A study done by the coupon website Couponbirds polled Americans on their shopping and Retail Therapy habits and found that a lot of people across the nation use shopping as a huge way to drown their stress in products. North Dakota may be a more salt-of-the-Earth state than many, but we’re still guilty of taking part in Retail Therapy: Couponbirds’ survey found that almost half of the population of ND (48%) admitted to buying things solely to make themselves feel better — and when you compare that to the adult population, that’s over 279,000 North Dakotans. This isn’t even too much when compared to other states across the nation — Kansas was identified as the state with the most admitted cases of shopping sprees (83%).

These Retail Therapy desires are only increased by Black Friday looming on the horizon — a day of tremendous sales, which one in ten across the nation say they look forward to more than Thanksgiving. Although the study found that half of Americans are skeptical of Black Friday deals, people are still eager to go shopping whenever the day rolls around. It’s even been noted by CouponBirds that 1 in 3 Retail Therapy-seekers start saving for Black Friday three months in advance.

In total, Couponbirds estimated that the average American will spend a total of $212.95 during every Retail Therapy session — that’s more than some actual meetings with a therapist. Of course, it’s one thing to spend money if one can afford it, but the study also finds that 15% of Americans who partake in Retail Therapy don’t actually have the money to afford them. With this being said, is there anything we can do to stop these unnecessary shopping trips?

Although the survey found that 45% of Americans would rather purchase new items than do light exercise to lift their mood, the idea of implementing strategies such as a good workout to deal with stress or bad moods that don’t involve a buying binge might not be a bad idea. Studies have shown that exercise can have a positive effect on one’s health in a manner similar to retail therapy… and for much cheaper, too.

To view the list of all 50 states and the number of people who take part in Retail Therapy there, visit’s study page.