Stress is the most common reason for taking time off work. Stress is a negative reaction to a trigger or pressure that is placed on an individual; triggers are numerous and some people may have a much higher tolerance for stress than others. Stress is a common condition and in many cases it can be treated easily and quickly; however, in severe cases, it may contribute to serious mental health conditions including anxiety and depression, as well as physiological problems. Mental health charities estimate that 1 in 4 Britons will suffer from a mental health condition at some stage in their lives.
What causes stress?
Everyone is different so something that may be deemed stressful by some people will have little or no effect on others. Stress affects everyone at some point in their lives but some people are more likely to suffer from stress; these people include:
- Carers: people who commit their lives to caring for loved ones often suffer from stress, as their work is both emotionally and physically draining and there is often no respite. Statistics released by Carers UK show that 9 out of 10 carers suffer from stress.
- People with high pressure jobs: people that work in a stressful work environment involving large amounts of money or life or death situation may often suffer from stress. Examples of these careers include doctors and nurses and businessmen.
- People with a hectic family life: parents that are juggling family life with work often suffer from stress because they have little time for themselves.
Stress may be triggered by a number of different factors and environments ranging from a busy train to spiralling debt. The most common triggers are listed below:
- Family issues
- Relationship problems
- Financial pressures
- Unemployment or a lack of secure employment
- Work related problems
- Moving house
- Bereavement or a loved one being diagnosed with a serious illness
- Poor health
- Exams, school work or upcoming tests (including driving tests, interviews etc)