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Mental Health Day addresses depression in the workplace

Earlier in the month of October, the World Health Organization celebrated World Mental Health Day by focusing on the problems that can be attributed to certain workplace environments. The selected topics were depression and anxiety and how they can negatively impact the emotional well-being of workers as well as ways to resolve or alleviate these problems. Many workers in Missouri and across the country battle these issues on the job on a daily basis.

A steady job is typically a positive mood builder. Nevertheless, some common workplace practices can lead to feelings of anxiety and depression for employees. Inflexible work hours, little to no decision-making opportunities and a lack of policies that support the health and safety of employees can all contribute to negative feelings in the workplace. Other problems result from little or poor communication between management and staff and a lack of clearly defined goals and expectations also .

WHO offered suggestions that workplaces can utilize in order to improve and support good mental health for employees. These include offering support to workers who are dealing with these and other conditions, establishing policies that promote and protect the safety and well-being of workers, and creating an environment of clear and open communication between staff and supervisors regarding options for finding help. Employers can also help employees find creative ways to enhance their careers and focus on ensuring that workers are maintaining a healthy balance between work and home life.

WHO further encouraged both workers and employers to seek ways to enhance their professional relations through communication and working together to find resolutions and resources to improve the work environment. Depression and anxiety are said to cost the global economy an estimated $1 trillion annually in lost productivity. Missouri workers who are struggling with these or any other serious work-related illnesses may be entitled to seek benefits through the workers’ compensation program. In many instances, workers may be unsure how to seek the benefits they need. An experienced and compassionate attorney can provide assistance in filing and processing claims, including appeals from claims that were initially denied.

Source: U.S. News & World Report, “World mental health day spotlights workplace anxiety and depression“, Megan Trimble, Oct. 10, 2017