A Scotland-wide stress survey has found that almost three quarters of adults (74 percent) have at some point over the last year felt so stressed they felt overwhelmed or unable to cope.
The survey – commissioned by the Mental Health Foundation - also found that more than a third of people (35 percent) had experienced suicidal thoughts or feeling because of stress.
Meanwhile one sixth of people (16 percent) said they had self-harmed as a result of feelings of stress.
The study was commissioned by YouGov for Mental Health Awareness week which has been run by the Mental Health Foundation for the past 18 years. The study has a sample size of 1012 people.
The study is included in a new report by the Mental Health Foundation published today – Stress – Are We Coping?
Lee Knifton, Head of Mental Health Foundation Scotland said: “Very large numbers of adults in Scotland are experiencing high levels of stress and it is damaging our health. Stress is one of the great public health challenges of our time, but it still isn’t being taken as seriously as physical health concerns.
“Stress is a significant factor in mental health problems including anxiety and depression. It is also linked to physical health problems like heart disease, problems with our immune system, insomnia and digestive problems.
“Individually we need to understand what is causing us personal stress and learn how to respond most effectively.
“But we also need to change at a societal level. This includes ensuring that employers treat stress and mental health problems as seriously as physical safety.
“We are also asking for well-being days to be provided to public sector workers as part of reducing the pressure on those who work hardest to look after us.”