As Mental Health Month comes to a close, we’re focusing on stress. When it comes to stress management and wellness, Millennials are challenged by stress and a lack of support.
Findings from Stress in America™: Missing the Health Care Connection, which was conducted online by Harris Interactive among 2,020 U.S. adults in August of 2012, suggest Millennials (age 18-33) in particular seem to have trouble managing their stress and getting health care that meets their needs.
The Stress in America survey found Millennials reporting an average stress level of 5.4 on a 10-point scale, exceeding the national average (4.9). Across generations, Stress in America™ survey findings show that our ability to manage stress and achieve healthy lifestyles varies by age. Younger Americans report experiencing the most stress and the least relief —they report higher stress levels than older generations and say they are not managing it well.
The Millennial generation also gives its health care lower marks than Americans across the country. Millennials are less likely than people nationwide to give their health care an “A” grade (25 percent versus 31 percent). Nearly half of Millennials (49 percent) do not believe or are not sure that they are doing enough to manage their stress, and few say they get stress or behavior management support from their health care provider. Only 23 percent think that their health care provider supports them a “lot or a great deal” in their desire to make healthy lifestyle and behavior changes, and just 17 percent say the same about their health care providers’ support for stress management.
Both Millennials and Gen Xers report an average stress level of 5.4 on a 10-point scale where 1 is “little or no stress” and 10 is “a great deal of stress,” far higher than Boomers’ average stress level of 4.7 and Matures’ average stress level of 3.7.
All generations say they experience stress at levels higher than they believe is healthy, but Matures are closest to bringing their stress levels in line with their definition of a healthy stress level. The difference between Matures’ stress levels and their perception of healthy stress is 0.7 points, compared with 1.4 points for Millennials, 1.6 points for Gen Xers and 1.3 points for Boomers.
So what can you do to reduce stress?
To learn more about the Stress in America survey, visit the APA website.