Almost One in Five Surveyed Workers Rate Their Mental Health as “Fair” or “Poor”

Almost One in Five Surveyed Workers Rate Their Mental Health as “Fair” or “Poor”

A survey from Gallup also revealed that mental health affected more surveyed females than males.

Almost one in five employees who took a Gallup survey said their mental health was “fair” or “poor,” new data shows.

The survey from Gallup surveyed 15,809 workers in the U.S. from August 23 to September 7, 2022. The survey results, published in a Gallup article in November, show that of the respondents, 19 percent said their mental health was fair or poor. Based on other responses, Gallup estimated these same workers missed an average of 11.8 days of work per year.

Thirty-four percent of respondents said their mental health was good and the same number reported very good mental health. These workers, paired with the 13 percent who said their mental health is excellent, only averaged 2.3 missed days of work per year.

The results of the survey also show that workers aged 18 to 39 and females may experience poorer mental health. Overall, 36 percent of females from age 18 to 29 said their mental health was fair or poor, compared to 27 percent of males in the same age range. The percentage drops slightly for males in females in the next age bracket: 30 to 39. Twenty-nine percent of females reported fair or poor mental health, and 17 percent of males reported the same. The numbers continue to decrease as age increases, but females reported poorer mental health compared to men in all age brackets.

Nearly two in five workers also reported that their job has had a somewhat or extremely negative impact on their mental health, report findings show. Thirty percent reported that the impact was the opposite—somewhat or extremely positive—with 30 percent reporting no impact.

Just one of the many ways employers can play a role in this is by offering support services. The survey showed that 43 percent of respondents’ employers “provide easily accessible mental health support services,” and 24 percent said their employers did not. Thirty-three percent were not sure.

Looking for ways to support employees’ mental health? Read OH&S’s articles “Mental Health in the Workforce: How to Support your Employees” and “Framework on Supporting Employees’ Mental Health and Well-Being Published by U.S. Surgeon General,” and listen to  OH&S SafetyPod episode “How to Support Employee Mental Health & Wellness.”

About the Author

Alex Saurman is the Content Editor for Occupational Health & Safety.

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