Women working longer are more likely to suffer from depression – study | Society


A British study found that women who work more than 55 hours a week are more likely to suffer from depression than those who work more than 35 to 40 hours.

In contrast, men who spend the same time are no longer likely to show signs of the disease, say the researchers. They suggest that this may be due to the fact that women face a "double burden" of very long hours spent at work, in addition to housework, which they tend to do much more than their male partners .

Research has also found that men and women who work most weekends or all weekends are more likely to become depressed than those who work only during the week.

The results are based on data from more than 20,000 British adults participating in Understanding Society: The Longitudinal Survey of British Households, which tracks family life and society since 2009.

Women who worked at least 55 hours a week were 7.3% more likely to develop depression than those who worked between 35 and 40 hours.

Women were also more likely than men to show debilitating work-related moods on Saturday and Sunday, although both were affected (4.6% and 3.4% more likely).

"Women in general are more likely to be depressed than men, and this was no different in the study," said lead author Gill Weston, PhD student at University College London. .

"Regardless of their work habits, we also found that workers with the most depressive symptoms were the oldest, low-income, smokers, physically demanding jobs and those who were dissatisfied with work. "

According to the study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, two-thirds of men work on weekends, compared with half of women.

NHS Digital research found that 19% of women in England suffer at one point from a common mental disorder – mainly anxiety or depression – and about 12% of men. Similarly, 10% of women and 6% of men experience severe symptoms of one or the other condition.

Weston pointed out that the authors' conclusions did not prove that long hours of work led directly to depression.

"This is an observational study. As a result, although we can not identify the exact causes, we know that many women face a higher domestic workload than men, resulting in total hours of work, time responsibilities, "she says.

Andy Bell, Deputy Director General of the Mental Health Center think-tank, said: "Long hours can be symptomatic of insecurity and unrealistic job expectations, which are known risk factors for a job. poor mental health. Thus, the context in which a person works long hours can be just as important as the time spent working. "

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