Saturday, May 18, 2024

Polaris of Enlightenment

Saturday, May 18, 2024

Polaris of Enlightenment

Stress-related sick leave skyrockets in Sweden

Published 13 April 2024
- By Editorial Staff
Significantly more women than men take sick leave due to stress.

Sick leave has increased significantly since 2010. According to Försäkringskassan, stress is now the most common reason for sick leave, and women are most affected.

Before the turn of the millennium, back pain was the most common cause of long-term sickness. Today, stress is the main cause of long-term sickness. In Jönköping County, for example, 1451 people were on sick leave for at least two weeks due to stress in December 2023. In December 2010, the figure was 375. 77 percent of those affected in Jönköping are women.

During the same period, the number of cases has increased from 9312 to 44 465 nationwide.

– We are connected and disconnected, I usually say, and we have lost time for reflection, says Margaretha Forss, a psychotherapist in Jönköping, to the tax-funded SVT.

Costly for individuals and society

According to Försäkringskassan, sickness absences related to psychiatric diagnoses are longer than others, with an average duration of 90 days, compared with 49 days for all diagnoses. So-called “acute stress reactions” often result in 40 days of sick leave. The diagnosis of “fatigue syndrome”, which is caused by prolonged negative stress, often results in six months or more of sick leave.

– Shorter periods of sick leave mean less loss of income for the individual and less expenditure on public health insurance. Prolonged sickness absence entails high costs for both the individual and society, mainly in the form of lost production, increased sickness benefit expenditure and personal suffering, says Ulrik Lidwall of the Swedish Social Insurance Agency.

TNT is truly independent!

We don’t have a billionaire owner, and our unique reader-funded model keeps us free from political or corporate influence. This means we can fearlessly report the facts and shine a light on the misdeeds of those in power.

Consider a donation to keep our independent journalism running…

Share via