Intervention needed to tackle workplace stress

Over the last decade, the number of people who say that stress has made them
ill has doubled, yet there has been no concurrent rise in the level of mental
illness, according to a consultant occupational psychiatrist.

During his talk, ‘Stress and depression: What’s the difference and what can
we do?, Dr Nick Glozier, of Kings College Hospital/Institute of Psychiatry,
looked at the relationship of workplace stress to depression and anxiety, and
the effects different types of interventions have had in tackling the problem.

There is a difficulty in identifying what works – from the difficulty in
identifying the level of stress or depression being experienced by an
individual, to the question of confidentially required by, for example, a
councillor used in a workplace counselling intervention.

However, what the evidence does suggest, said Glozier, is that some kind of
intervention does work; what remains unclear is the level required.

He added that the vast majority of OH practitioners will see clients
suffering from anxiety and depression, rather than more extreme cases where
symptoms of panic or psychotic episodes occur. "By the time clients see
me, they are very ill and I would class them as suffering from a disabling illness,"
he concluded.

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