Mental Health: Are Teachers at Risk as Well?

While the world at large is virtually absorbed by concerns of students’ mental health risks, recent reports have claimed that teachers are at risk as well. As per a recent survey conducted by Leeds Beckett University, more than half of Britain’s teachers are actually diagnosed with mental health issues. What does this report, which has only surfaced recently, have to offer? Do read on in order to be duly guided.

Mental Health: Know about the Teachers’ Risks

In what can be termed as an alarming development, around three quarter of those surveyed by Leeds Beckett University are found to be combating poor emotional and psychological conditions. And, it is believed that these conditions can seriously affect pupils’ progress. Two of the major reasons attributable were “excessive workload” and growing financial problems. The reports of the intensifying financial problems cannot really be ruled out quite simply because of the fact that the Independent revealed that around hundreds of teachers were actually forced to beg for financial charity as they failed to afford transport and housing with the kind of wages they earned.

Why do teachers suffer mentally?

In general, reports of teachers being subjected to emotional pressures have always surfaced every now and then. While many have continued to struggle with them, there are others who have chosen to ease these pressures by embracing them in the first place. You might as well come across stories of teachers who struggle with symptoms even after taking medications. They have admitted that there are days when they honestly do not want to work—quite simply because of the professional demands that they have to meet, the students they work with and, of course, because of the position that they hold.

Teachers working under extreme conditions also admit to having anxiety because of not-so-supportive administration and heavy workload. Workload, notably, has been largely held responsible for hypertension among teachers.

Coming back to the survey, we were talking about, the findings reveal that out of the 775 thus studied, 54% reported bad mental health. Around 81 per cent of these respondents agreed that the present condition of their mental health actually impacts their equation with their pupils in a negative fashion. “Lower levels of tolerance” and quickness to anger are two immediately visible side-effects.

What should be done?

The changing demands of the workload, it is believed, have made it impossible for teachers to embrace a healthier approach to work. So, there is presently a fervent appeal to the Government to reduce teachers’ workload. The fact that the poor mental health of the teacher affects the pupils’ progress cannot really be undermined. As such, it can easily be claimed that teachers’ mental health should receive as much attention as students’ mental health does and there should be wide scale measures to combat risks as well. This is a situation which simply cannot go on as has been opined by many experts out there. What we need at present is heightened awareness and better measures to combat this problem.

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