International Stress Awareness Week
There have been very few situations in recent history that have created a global worry in the way that Covid19 has. Not only has it caused us to collectively stress about our health and that of our families, but its effect has reached pretty much every area of our lives: from financial security to our social interactions. One in five adults was known to be suffering from some form of depression in June 2020 – almost double the figure from the year before.
Stress is now known to be one of today’s most serious issues in public health. Linked to all manner of illnesses like heart disease, digestive issues and cancer, stress is commonplace within construction with its workforce particularly at risk. A shocking four out of five construction workers say they feel stressed at some point in their working week, and it’s easy to see why. More than half of the building workforce in the UK is self-employed and getting reliable, regular work is not always easy. Add to that the day-to-day running of projects with complicated supply chains, payment withholding, and long hours and you already have the perfect storm for poor mental health, without the added pressure of working away from home for long periods and paying other people's wages. It’s no wonder that bad mental health is one of the biggest issues the construction industry faces with stress, depression or anxiety accounting for a fifth of all work related illness.
In international stress awareness week, we can tell you that there is help out there. Building Mental Health is an organisation that is raising awareness and removing the stigma around mental health. It provides a flexible and consistent framework to enable anyone in the construction industry to access mental health support at any time, from useful information to mental health first aid courses, and can be found here: www.buildingmentalhealth.net.