The alarmingly high rates of early retirements of teachers due to health reasons since the 1990s has attracted the attention of European research and politics to the potentially negative, unhealthy consequences of teachers' work. Psychosocial and work-related stress, psychovegetative disorders, burnout syndrome, workplace bullying, absenteeism and early retirements seem to be widespread and dramatically increasing phenomena across Europe. They evoke not only individual suffering and breakdown but also enormous costs for public funds and health services due to sickness rates, therapies and early retirements. Furthermore the emotional exhaustion of teachers of course affects the quality of teaching and has negative consequences for pupils and students.
Art and creativity can fight stress also if your work in hospital. This are the results of a two-year research project entitled "Co-health of the Social and Community Theatre Centre" run by the University of Turin. The research involved almost one hundred students and healthcare professionals. The technique called social community theater" reduced by up to 30 percent of the effects of stress affecting especially the helping professions, such as doctors, nurses, but also teachers and educators. The greatest benefits regarded emotional exhaustion and personal fulfillment. The network of personal relationships had a positive impact on the self-esteem as well as family cohesion.
Is happiness making us feel healthier? One pioneering economist in the UK has spent the best part of a decade arguing that we simply must find an answer to this question – gaining the support of David Cameron, who backed the notion of happiness as "the new GDP". Professor Lord Richard Layard points out:
- Treating someone for depression or anxiety disorders costs on average £650. The success rate is 50 per cent. If they then come off Employment Support Allowance as a result, the saving to the taxpayer is £650 a month. So, a single outlay of £650 can save £650 a month.
- People with mental health problems cost the NHS an extra £2,000 each in their physical healthcare (in trips to A&E, for example), or £10bn in total. Spend more on psychotherapy and the cost would be covered by the saving on physical healthcare.
- Mental health issues account for half of all sick days.
- In Britain today, one adult in six suffers from depression or a crippling anxiety disorder. A third of families include someone who is mentally ill – yet fewer than one in three people suffering from mental health problems will receive treatment.
Today, 04/11/2015 is STRESS AWARENESS DAY!!
As we are very much aware in the HelP partnership, stress affects us all, and particularly in the workplace. Our bodies are not prepared for it and its effects can be serious enough to cause significant physical and psychological damage. Stress Awareness Day aims to promote awareness of these particularly modern challenges, and to aid individuals and organisations in changing behaviours and lifestyles which may lead to excessive stress.