Work-related depression Work-related depression

The Pan American Health Organization and the World Health Organization (WHO), are the leaders of the campaign for World Mental Health Day. This year’s theme is “Mental Health in the Workplace.”

For both organizations, “Globalization has contributed to work-related stress and its associated disorders. One in five people at the workplace may experience a mental health condition. Mental health problems have a direct impact on workplaces through increasing absenteeism, reducing productivity, and increasing healthcare costs. However, stigma and lack of awareness of mental health persist as barriers to addressing mental health in the workplace.” (Also read: Workplace stress and its effects on what you eat).

Both employers and coworkers can help take away the stigma of these conditions, identify the symptoms or warning signs an employee may present, and help the employee to fight any mental illness in a timely way.

The Pan American Health Organization offers the following recommendations for employers:

  1.   Be aware of mental health issues.
  2.   Facilitate access to healthcare for employees who may need it.
  3.   Be understanding and flexible to the needs of employees, understanding their personal situations.
  4.   Combat stigma and encourage open discussion on mental health in the workplace.

Employees should help recognize the warning signs of their coworkers such as:

  1.                  The individual isolates themselves from their team.
  2.                  They appear apathetic or indifferent.
  3.                  They forget about tasks or deadlines.
  4.                  They seemed distracted and are less productive.
  5.                  They have inappropriate reactions and anxious relationships.
  6.                  They begin to show changes in their appearance.