Almost one-third (29%) men who work full time have suffered a work-related mental health issue of some sort, with almost half also never seeking professional help for their condition.
A survey of 2,000 employees commissioned by video counselling and therapy provider Mynurva found that 42% of men who had experienced poor mental health at work had not sought professional advice, compared with 32% of women.
Moreover, 46% of men had never spoken to their manager about their mental health, compared with 40% of women. It was believed by 59% of men and 49% of women that admitting to their condition would hinder their chances of a promotion.
The research, published during “Movember” men’s health awareness month, also found that almost half (48%) of men and 37% of women had taken sickness absence or used their holiday allowance in the past 12 months to help cope with poor mental health.
Dr Zain Sikafi, CEO and founder of Mynurva, said: “The typical stereotype of a man as someone who is strong and self-reliant has created a negative stigma surrounding mental health. As a result, some men still perceive talking about their mental health as a sign of weakness, deciding to ‘man-up’ instead of seeking professional help as they would for a physical illness.
“Society is certainly taking positive steps forward in talking more and more about mental health, but evidently there is still much more to be done in a professional context so that men feel comfortable seeking the treatment they need. This is particularly true when it comes to having support structures in place at work.”
Sixty per cent of male employees and 55% of women worried that their poor mental health would not remain confidential if they were to discuss it at work.
Sixty-two per cent of all workers believed that their relationships with colleagues would be affected if their mental health condition became common knowledge.
According to the Mental Health Foundation, men make up around three-quarters of suicides in the UK. It also found only 24% of men who experienced high levels of stress had discussed it with a friend or family member.