stress workplace wellness

As Workplace Stress Increases, Wellness Programs Can Play Key Role

The data come from the UK, but the lessons are relevant for companies and employees here in the U.S., too — as well as for an important aspect of a well-run workplace wellness program.

Workplace Insight reports that “Nearly half (46 percent) of employees questioned in a new survey feel more stressed at work than they did a year ago and 17 percent feel their work stress levels are ‘much higher,’ new research has claimed.”

The research “also suggests that 16 percent of people in work claim to have taken medical advice to help them cope with work-related stress, and 13 percent are on medication partly because of this. Just 12 percent say they feel less stressed than they were 12 months ago.”

As we’ve reported, stress can affect a number of personal health areas, and helping employees manage stress can be an important part of any well-run workplace wellness program:

  • Researchers may have identified yet another reason to manage stress, according to MedPage Today: “Adults who experience chronic stress may be prone to obesity.” (see post here)
  • A study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine found that “High stress is associated with negative health behavior.” (see post here)
  • The American Diabetes Association: “Many long-term sources of stress are mental. Your mind sometimes reacts to a harmless event as if it were a real threat. Like physical stress, mental stress can be short term: from taking a test to getting stuck in a traffic jam. It can also be long term: from working for a demanding boss to taking care of an aging parent.” (see post here)

And workplace stress creates impact beyond just at the workplace.

Adds the Workplace Insight post: “Fifty five percent of those suffering from work related stress say it has adversely affected their sleep, and 19 percent claim it’s contributed towards a decline in their relationship with their partner. Four out of ten (40 percent) say work-related stress means they are not eating properly and 42 percent are doing less exercise.”