Mental Health Issues at the Job

“The way your employees feel is the way your customers will feel. And if youremployees don’t feel valued, neither will your customers.” – Sybil F. Stershic

The most overlooked factor in workplace is the mental health of the employees. There are many factors that add to depression and anxiety of an employee. Most of the time employees don’t express or talk about their mental issues fearing to be stigmatized as a sick person. The bottling up their depression cost them their health, productivity, creativity and performance.

As the world is moving ahead with technological advancement, the human health especially mental health is considered to be crucial and important. Many multinational companies are coming up with employee-friendly policies. But still in developing countries this issue prevails. Employees are considered to be and expected to be working like robots having no feelings.

A good and friendly-working environment helps employees give their 100% performance. It is reported that a helping team boosts the overall performance of the company. An understanding supervisor is considered to be the ultimate leader to whom employees look up to.

If employees are exposed to the constant stressing environment, it will affect their professional and personal life; eventually making employee quit the job.  Adequate treatment, on the other hand, can alleviate symptoms for the employee and improve job performance.

Managers want to help their employees going through tough time because of depression and anxiety but are unsure how to go about it. The stigma attached to having a psychiatric disorder is such that employees may be reluctant to seek treatment — especially in the current economic climate — out of fear that they might jeopardize their jobs.


Some of the major mental health issues at the workplace are:


Depression:


It is the most studies disorder in the workplace. One survey of a nationally representative sample reported that about 6% of employees experience symptoms of depression in any given year.

Depression is something that is evident through behavior such as nervousness, restlessness, irritability, and relentlessness. It also causes physical pain as aches etc making an employee passive, withdrawn, aimless and unproductive. Employees may also complain about fatigue and mood swings.

Researchers who analyzed employee responses to the WHO questionnaire found that workers with depression reported the equivalent of 27 lost workdays per year — nine of them because of sick days or other time is taken out of work, and another 18 reflecting lost productivity. Other research has found that employees with depression are more likely than others to lose their jobs and to change jobs frequently.



Bipolar Disorder:


It is another mental health issue in which a person suffers through two different moods. One is elevated or manic mood and other is depressed. Employees also experience this disorder. In a manic mood, an employee may appear highly energetic, creative but at the cost of productivity. He/she might make mistakes and work aggressively. On the other hand, the depressed mood will make an employee look depressive, withdrawn and irritated. This disorder is experienced by the same person.


Anxiety Disorder:


it is another mental health issue in which a person suffers through two different moods. One is elevated or manic mood and other is depressed. Employees also experience this disorder. In a manic mood, an employee may appear highly energetic, creative but at the cost of productivity. He/she might make mistakes and work aggressively. On the other hand, the depressed mood will make an employee look depressive, withdrawn and irritated. This disorder is experienced by the same person.

Anxiety:


Every person on this earth experiences anxiety at some point in their lives. And it can go undiagnosed for 5 to 10 years. Employees experience anxiety in the workplace. They find it difficult to concentrate and worry excessively about tasks. Anxiety causes significant work impairment.

It is high time that companies and managers should consider the mental health of their employees a serious concern. Having a sense of being taken cared of by top management, make employees help in achieving the ultimate goals set by the companies.

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