Attitudes about mental health are changing in North America

With the increasing stress level of our daily lives more and more workers are seeing this affect their work.  But just how stressed are workers?  Well according to a new study by Ginger, an on-demand behavioral health system, focusing on emotional and mental support in the workplace, almost half of the 1,200 full-time employees with full employer-provided benefits that were studied during a one-year span had been brought to tears in the workplace.

These are some of the results:

  • 83% of surveyed workers said they experience stress on a regular basis.
  • 81% say stress impacts their work negatively, with symptoms ranging from anxiety to physical ailments.
  • 48% have cried at work.
  • 50% missed at least one day of work during the last year because of the stress induced at the office.

Despite the distressing results, Ginger found that 50% of those surveyed said they are more likely now to get mental health help, but unfortunately the top barriers to seeking treatment remains cost and privacy as workers are afraid that seeking help with be looked at negatively by employers.

Mental health is becoming an increasingly important topic within the U.S. workplace, as one in four employees report persistent stress and excessive anxiety, according to research from the Anxiety Disorders Association of America.

And it’s not just the average employee, but also management and CEOs suffering from stress, exhaustion, and burnout. A University of California San Francisco study showed that 30% of entrepreneurs admit to struggling with depression.

So, while it is encouraging to see that attitudes about mental health are changing in North America, it’s clear that there is significantly more work to be done to make care more accessible and increase communication about awareness and where workers can seek the help that they need.

By Jamie Barrie