Study Links Working Overtime to Anxiety, Depression

Employees who work overtime are at increased risk of anxiety and depression, suggests a study in the June Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, official publication of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM).

Elisabeth Kleppa and colleagues of the University of Bergen, Norway, analyzed data on work hours from a larger study of Norwegian men and women. Symptoms of anxiety and depression were assessed using a standard screening questionnaire. Anxiety and depression scores were compared for 1,350 workers who worked overtime, 41 to 100 hours per week; and approximately 9,000 workers who worked normal hours, 40 hours or less.

Working overtime was associated with higher anxiety and depression scores among both men and women. The rate of questionnaire scores indicating "possible" depression increased from about 9 percent for men with normal work hours to 12.5 percent for those who worked overtime.

For women, the rate of possible depression increased from 7 to 11 percent. In both sexes, rates of possible anxiety and depression were higher among workers with lower incomes and for less-skilled workers.

The relationship between overtime and anxiety/depression was strongest among men who worked the most overtime--49 to 100 hours per week. Men working such very long hours also had higher rates of heavy manual labor and shift work and lower levels of work skills and education.

Previous studies have raised possible health and safety concerns of working long hours; however, most studies of this issue have focused on the health effects of shift work, rather than overtime. Under European Union work rules, employees have the right to refuse to work more than 48 hours per week.

The study permits no conclusions about how working long hours leads to increased anxiety and depression. For more information, visit www.acoem.org.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Safety Management Software - Free Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Software’s comprehensive suite of modules help organizations to record and manage incidents, inspections, hazards, behavior based safety observations, and much more. Improve safety with an easy to use tool for tracking, notifying and reporting on key safety data.

  • Create Flexible Safety Dashboards

    IndustrySafe’s Dashboard Module allows organizations allows you to easily create and view safety KPIs to help you make informed business decisions. Our best of breed default indicators can also save you valuable time and effort in monitoring safety metrics.

  • Schedule and Record Observations

    IndustrySafe's Observations module allows managers, supervisors, and employees to conduct observations on employees involved in safety critical behavior. IndustrySafe’s pre-built BBS checklists may be used as is, or can be customized to better suit the needs of your organization.

  • Why Is Near Miss Reporting Important?

    A near miss is an accident that's waiting to happen. Learn how to investigate these close calls and prevent more serious incidents from occurring in the future.

  • Get the Ultimate Guide to Safety Training

    When it comes to safety training, no matter the industry, there are always questions regarding requirements and certifications. We’ve put together a guide on key safety training topics, requirements for certifications, and answers to common FAQs.

  • Industry Safe
comments powered by Disqus

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - May 2019

    May 2019

    Featuring:

    • RESPIRATORY PROTECTION
      Why Pick a PAPR? 
    • FIRE SAFETY TRAINING
      Fire Safety: Plan, Prevent, Train, Recover
    • PROTECTIVE APPAREL
      The Truth About Heat Stress and FRC
    • AIHCE EXP 2019 PREVIEW
      Underestimated No More
    View This Issue