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Occupational Stress in the UK
Stress caused or heightened by a person’s occupation is a huge problem in the UK, with more than 200,000 new cases reported each year. This results in a staggering 10.8 million working hours being lost due to absence from work. This causes a substantial financial strain on the economy – in 2005/2006 the HSE reported a cost of over £530million to the British economy, due to illnesses caused by occupational stress.
The number of new cases reported each year has improved in recent years, yet there is still a very real issue that needs to be addressed. Although some occupations are inherently stressful, employers must do more to acknowledge the problem and to minimise the risk of employees being affected by the ailments associated with stress.
Who Is Most at Risk?
With the vast amounts of data collected by the HSE, it is able to establish who is most at risk of suffering from work-related stress.
- Women are reportedly more likely to be affected by work-related stress.
- Employees aged between 35-54.
- Workspaces with 250+ employees are reportedly among the most stressful.
- Health and social care had the highest number of employees reporting conditions associated with work-related stress
- Those in the South West of England are more at risk of being affected
What Are the Most Stressful Occupations in the UK?
The five most stressful jobs in the UK are:
- Health and social care workers, nurses and social services staff
- Recruiters, salespersons and marketers
- Lawyers and solicitors
- Head chefs
What to Do If You Feel That You Have Been Affected by Work-Related Stress
Occupational stress is a very real issue, and must be addressed by both employers and employees. Symptoms are varied in type and severity, and if not addressed, can escalate into serious mental and/or physical ailments.
If your occupation has been detrimental to your health and wellbeing, it is advisable that you speak to your employer and seek medical attention. By talking to your manager or employer about the issues that cause the stress, you can work together to eradicate the problems, and prevent them from causing further issues.
As with all stress-related illnesses, it can often help to talk through your problems with friends and relatives.