Is the Recession Affecting Your Health? The recession is having a widescale impact on all aspects of life, from relationships between countries in the Eurozone, to the job market and employment rates, to how we manage our finances and deciding how much to spend and save. But Chartered Management Institute has recently released research into how the recession is even having an impact on our health -- and in particular employee health.When the news reports of the difficulty to finds jobs, that companies are no longer hiring -- that they are in fact shrinking –people are desperate to hold on to their current positions. Health in the Workplace When compared to 2007 it seems that people are working longer, harder hours – especially those in managerial positions – due to increased workloads. This has a knock-on effect on their health as they are hit bystress and depression from this increased effort; there are reports of people suffering from elevated anxiety and panic attacks. They are also more likely to force themselves to come into work even when sick and needing the time off. Not surprisingly this has an effect on their temperament and there has been an increase in negative management styles, with complaints of bureaucratic, authoritarian and reactive methods being enforced. As employees under them suffer from this trickle down stress, their mental and physical health also starts to suffer under the strained atmosphere. Health Falls by the Wayside People also seem less likely to take care of their health, as they are more focused on other factors in their life such as having enough money to keep a roof over their head. Worrying about their income and even their job security means that a large portion of workers feel they cannot take days off on sick leave when they are ill.For people in countries such as Ireland, there is also the added fear of medical costs which can mount up without a medical card or private health insurance. For some of these people, health costs have to go to the back of the line behind food, bills and mortgage payments. This reluctant to visit GPs and hospitals could end up having serious consequences, with more critical illnesses not being identified early – which is vital for improving treatment success. People with chronic illnesses that need regular care may be also choosing to skip appointments, worried about taking the time from work, which will only cause problems to mount for the future. Overall, employee health and optimism in their jobs is suffering under the shadow of recession. Trust in their employers looking after and supporting staff wellbeing has fallen and this has also had an effect on line-manager relationships. People are feeling neglected by bosses and an each-person- for-themselves mentality seems to be the pervading as they struggle to keep afloat in the poor financial climate.
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