How many of you remember the much loved Sergeant Phil Esterhaus from the 80s cult US cop show Hill Street Blues and his daily warning at roll call, “Let’s be careful out there”?
Looking at the latest figures his catch phrase is even more appropriate today for UK workers as they face an even more insidious enemy than the criminals around the Hill Street precinct – namely work-related stress.
Over two-thirds of patients treated by doctors in the UK are suffering from stress-related symptoms which can include:
•anxiety / panic attacks
•fatigue / low energy
•migraine / headaches
•irritable bowel syndrome
Most people feel stress every day & in small doses it can help you cope with life’s daily problems in a positive way.
When stress builds up, becomes unrelenting or even overwhelming it can start to affect your physical & emotional health & well-being, & this is when action needs to be taken.
Work-induced stress is a significant problem in the UK, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) estimates that between 2009 & 2010 9.8 million working days were lost through work-related stress.
For each person experiencing work-related stress, an estimated 22.6 days of work was lost – that is equal to 0.42 days per worker.
Mind, the mental health charity, reports that stress in the workplace is thought to be the second biggest occupational health problem in the UK.
Stress, depression or anxiety-related sick days are three times more likely to be taken by women than men. Analysis by Legal & General shows that 74% of stress-related absences were made by women.
In a recent survey 77% of small business owners reported suffering ailments in the workplace, including a lack of energy (31%), anxious thoughts (31%), headaches (26%) & back pain (26%).
A combination of long hours & working harder to service new business could be what has driven 45% of small business owners to say they feel more stressed now than they did a year ago-
Last year, close to 7 million prescriptions were issued by the NHS for anti-anxiety drugs.
As economic woes have worsened, & job & mortgage worries become rife, the numbers being treated in hospital for such disorders have soared – with more than 17,000 outpatients’ appointments last year, four times as many as in 2007.
There has to be a solution and I can only suggest that if you are feeling stressed and anxious then please check out Autogenic Therapy at www.howtobeatstress.co.uk as whilst nothing can make your problems disappear, AT can help you cope with them far better and take charge of your life again.