Report reveals increase in anxiety, suicidal thoughts and stress created by financial pressure

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Data released by workplace wellbeing provider Champion Health gives an insight into the health and wellbeing of the working population between January 2023 and October 2023.

The study of 4,383 employees reveals that the amount of professionals experiencing anxiety and stress has increased, with one in three people reporting they never or rarely feel relaxed.

Financial pressure leading cause of stress outside work

While female professionals remain more likely to experience symptoms of anxiety (68%) the number of men experiencing at least mild symptoms has seen a rapid increase from 38% in 2022 to 60% in 2023.

Financial worries continue to rise and are reported as the leading cause of stress outside of work, cited by 41%, up from 37% last year. And it’s male workers who are experiencing the most financial pressure (42% compared to 36% of men last year).

Worryingly, the number of 16-24-year-olds experiencing negative stress at work has doubled since last year; and the same age group cite financial pressure as a major cause of stress, an increase from 34% to 46%.

Distressing data

The data, which has been published in Champion Health’s annual report also revealed that:

  • Prevalence of thoughts of suicide/self-harm has increased to 13%, up from 8% in 2021 and 9% in 2022
  • 40% of young people between ages 16-24 experience clinically-relevant symptoms of anxiety
  • 38% of people are experiencing unhelpful/negative levels of stress in the workplace
  • 53% reported feeling down, depressed or hopeless
  • Physical health symptoms have also increased; 64% report eye strain, 46% report tired eyes and 34% experience headaches during the working day

Harry Bliss, CEO of Champion Health commented:

“It’s no surprise that the last few years have been extremely tough on employees. The fact that workers experiencing suicidal thoughts are continuing to rise year-on-year is distressing, and a 44% increase from last year is a statistic that cannot be ignored. The reality is that in a workforce of 1,000 staff, 130 will be having thoughts about taking their own lives, which could have a devastating impact.

“Our report shows financial pressure is affecting more people – especially younger people. However, the wellbeing scores correlate with the person’s relationship with money – the healthier your understanding of finances, ability to budget and how you feel about money, the more positive your wellbeing is likely to be.

Laura Dallas, Head of Product at Champion Health who played a key role in analysing the data behind the report, added:

“What lies ahead of us in 2024 is uncertain, but one thing I’m sure of is that a continued prioritisation of proactive initiatives is going to be crucial in fostering healthier, more resilient workforces.”

You can view the report at

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