Businesses should take care to avoid a stress epidemicEmployers have been told to take steps to prevent a stress epidemic in the UK.

Nattasha Freeman, the president of the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health, said it was important that workers were helped to deal with the demands of their job, particularly amid the current economic downturn.

Speaking during National Men’s Health Week, she added that that many employees were also seeing their salaries be cut, while also witnessing a rise on the cost of living, which was not a healthy situation.

Ms Freeman noted that work-related stress could leave people out of employment for a long time.

"Being out of work is not good for your health, so we need to encourage employers to do more to prevent stress from striking in the first place," she stated.

She concluded that the workplace had a key role to play in making sure people stayed healthy.

Charles Cotton, adviser for performance and reward at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, recently stated that as well as paying for healthcare in the workplace, employers should do more to encourage their staff to look after their own wellbeing.