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Workplace Stress: A Silent Killer of Employee Health and Productivity

“Having a job in many ways improves an individual’s health and overall attitude toward life.” However, many people face significant stress in the workplace that it outweighs any possible benefits and even poses a threat to their health.

The United States’ National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health defines job stress as the harmful physical and emotional responses that occur when the requirements of the job do not match the capabilities, resources, or needs of the worker. Job stress can, in turn, lead to poor health and even injury.

Many workers report experiencing work-related stress at their jobs and this compromises their performance and health. A recent survey by Northwestern National Life revealed that about 40% of workers reported that their jobs were extremely stressful. In another survey by Yale University, 29% of workers reported feeling extreme stress because of their jobs.

Stress levels vary between professions and population groups. Some workers are at a higher risk of stress than others. Studies reveal that younger workers, women, and those in lower-skilled jobs are at most risk of experiencing work-related stress and its attendant complications.

Casual full-time workers, who are likely to have the lowest job control and high job demands are most at risk of job strain.

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