Workplace stress, anxiety and depression

April 25, 2019

Consultant Psychiatrist Dr Dimitrios Paschos shares his expert tips on avoiding workplace stress, anxiety and depression in an article in The Metro

According to the latest figures, over half a million people in the UK are suffering from work-related mental health conditions

Stress and burnout is a rising concern in the UK workplace

Stress, anxiety and depression accounts for 57% of lost working days. High workloads, lack of managerial support, changes at work and bullying behaviour are cited as some of the top causes of work-related mental health conditions.

Changes in the way we work may impact mental health

The workplace model is ever-changing. For instance, zero hours contracts and employees being contactable 24/7 make it difficult for individuals to maintain a healthy work-life balance. In order to successfully combat the problem, it should be addressed on a wider-level. This includes involving organisations through to government policies. Individuals also need to take charge over their mental health. In fact, there are many actions that people can employ to help manage and improve symptoms of stress.

How to manage symptoms of stress

Sleep is one of the most beneficial things we can do to help achieve good mental health. A good night’s sleep helps our brains clear away toxins that build up throughout the day. Dr Paschos told the Metro, ‘Sleep also helps us to remember new things we’ve learnt, improves concentration, mood and metabolism, so it’s vital we bank between six to eight hours each day.’ The Consultant Psychiatrist also advises people to ‘Reduce stimulants such as alcohol and caffeine’. As an alternative he recommends drinks like herbal teas and water to promote restful sleep. Exercise can also help to metabolise the stress hormones adrenaline and cortisol.

Seek advice and identify your triggers

Identifying stress triggers and talking about them can be very beneficial. Seeking independent advice can also be advantageous. After all, getting a different perspective to the problem can help rationalise it and release tension. There are also many online resources and support groups that can help with stress, anxiety and depression. There are many treatment options available that can help manage and alleviate symptoms. However, if you feel that you cannot cope, that your stress levels are unmanageable or your health is being affected by stress in the workplace, it is imperative you seek professional medical help.

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