Saf Health Work.  2014 Mar;5(1):7-12.

Work-related Stress, Caregiver Role, and Depressive Symptoms among Japanese Workers

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Public Health, Nagasaki University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Nagasaki, Japan.
  • 2Department of Nursing, Nagasaki University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Nagasaki, Japan. honda@nagasaki-u.ac.jp

Abstract

BACKGROUND
In Japan, more than 60% of employees are reported to suffer from anxiety and stress. Consequently, Japanese society has begun to address such important issues as psychogenic disability and job-related suicide. Furthermore, given the aging of society and the surge in the number of elderly people requiring care, it is necessary to adequately and proactively support employees who care for their elderly relatives. The purpose
of the present study was to investigate caregiver burden in caring for elderly relatives and work-related stress factors associated with mental health among employees.
METHODS
We studied 722 men and women aged 18-83 years in a cross-sectional study. The K10 questionnaire was used to examine mental health status.
RESULTS
The proportion of participants with a high K10 score was 15% (n = 106). Having little conversation with their supervisor and/or coworkers significantly increased the risk of depression [odds ratio (OR) 1.8], as did high job overload (OR 2.7) and job dissatisfaction (OR 3.8), compared with employees who frequently conversed with their supervisor and/or coworkers. Caring for elderly relatives as a prominent characteristic of an employee was a significant risk factor for depression (OR 2.1).
CONCLUSION
The present study demonstrated that employees who were caring for elderly relatives were significantly associated with an increased risk of depression. To prevent depressive disorders, it may be important to focus on reducing the work-caregiving role conflict, as well as enhancing employees' job control and better rewarding their efforts in the workplace.

Keyword

Keywords; caregiving; depression; work-related stress
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