Stress and Its Effects

  • 4 min read

All of us know, or at least heard about the negative effects of stress on human body and mind. Here, you will face some scary facts about stress and its effects on us.
Stress level that the modern world brings leads to countless mental problems as well. It is one of the most significant contributors to poor mental health, low productivity and even absenteeism in the UK workforce – and in fact, recent data shows that it is an epidemic that is only increasing. Over 11 million working days are lost each year because of work-related stress. Here are some of the statistical facts about stress based mental problems at work.

Stress based mental problems facts:

1. According to American Institute of Stress report, 1 million people miss work each day due to workplace stress
2. Stress can contribute to conditions such as anxiety or depression.
3. Nearly half a million people in the UK have work-related stress at a level that makes them feel ill.
4. According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE)’s latest Labour Force Survey*, 49% of all working days lost in 2016-2017 were reported as being due to work-related stress, depression or anxiety.
5. Work is the most common cause of stress for UK adults, with 59% experiencing it
6. Just 9% say they ‘never’ experience work-related stress, while only 12% consider the levels of work-related stress they experience as ‘low’
7. One in five (21%) UK workers experience moderate to high levels of work-related stress several times per week
8. Long working hours (21%) are the most common cause of work-related stress, followed by concerns about work performance – both workers’ own (13%) and that of others, such as junior members of staff (14%), customer or client satisfaction levels (11%) and office politics (9%)
9. Higher earners (i.e. those earning more than £40,000) are the most likely to experience work-related stress – 72%
10. Family stress is experienced by 46%, while 45% experience stress caused by money, 38% due to health and 35% as a result of relationships
11. Sleep loss (65%) is the most prevalent impact that stress has on UK adults, followed by experiencing anxiety (47%), disrupted concentration (37%), comfort eating (35%) and being less productive at work (32%)
12. 25% struggle to be as productive at work as they normally would be when experiencing stress, while almost the same number (22%) report feeling disengaged with their work as a result
13. More than one in 10 say that stress causes them to take sick days from work
14. Just 3% report that stress makes them feel more engaged with their work than normal, while only slightly more (5%) believe they are more effective as a result
15. In terms of departments, high pressured sales workers were unsurprisingly the most likely to experience work-related stress, with 79% confessing that they suffered with this.
16. Human resources departments also scored extremely highly for job stress, with 76% of workers in this type of role saying they experience this.
17. IT workers were third most likely to report instances of stress, with 65%.
18. 64% of senior managers report experiencing work stress.
19. 65% of British workers have poor sleep as a result of their stress level at work.
20. Long term stress which goes unresolved can have a detrimental impact on the health of workers.
21. Almost one in every five (18%) admitted that they will turn to stimulants (including caffeine, nicotine and alcohol) to be able to manage stress.
22. Unmanaged stress can also lead to rash decisions. As many as 7% say they will look for a new job as a way to escape from the stress they are experiencing.
23. Stress has a tangible impact on the vast majority of UK adults (81%)
24. Over 80% actively try to alleviate their own stress, with the most common methods being exercising (33%), discussing their problems with friends and family (28%) and sleeping (27%)
25. Almost half (45%) of UK workers say that their place of work does not have anything in place to help reduce employees’ stress levels and improve their mental wellbeing
26. Flexi-time (21%), allowing staff to work from home (18%) and organising social events (12%) are the most common things workers say their employers currently do to help alleviate their stress
27. Just 8% offer counselling services to staff, 6% offer stress management and/or resilience training and 9% arrange regular one-to-ones with managers.
28. Wellness schemes which provide access to stress-relieving forms of exercise such as Pilates, yoga or Tai Chi, mindfulness classes can be a great and casual way to encourage healthier employees who do not proactively do anything to manage their mental health.
29. Over half (55%) of workers report that their company has measures in place to help their staff manage and reduce stress levels and improve mental wellbeing.