Perceived life stress, 2009

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Stress carries several negative health consequences, including heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, as well as immune and circulatory complications.1 Exposure to stress can also contribute to behaviours such as smoking, over-consumption of alcohol, and less-healthy eating habits.2

In 2009, 23.2% of Canadians aged 15 and older reported that most days were 'extremely or quite a bit stressful,' up from 22.3% in 2008.

In 2009, 24.8% of females reported that most days were quite a bit or extremely stressful, compared with 21.6% of males (Chart 1).

Chart 1
Percentage reporting most days quite a bit or extremely stressful, by sex, household population aged 15 and older, Canada, 2003 to 2009

Description

Chart 1: Percentage reporting most days quite a bit or extremely stressful, by sex, household population aged 15 and older, Canada, 2003 to 2009

Source: Canadian Community Health Survey, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2008 and 2009.

In particular, 21.1% of females aged 15 to 19 reported stress in their daily lives, compared with 11.7% of males in that age group (Chart 2).

Chart 2
Percentage reporting most days quite a bit or extremely stressful, by age group and sex, household population aged 15 and older, Canada, 2009

Description

Chart 2: Percentage reporting most days quite a bit or extremely stressful, by age group and sex, household population aged 15 and older, Canada, 2009

Source: Canadian Community Health Survey, 2009.

Daily stress rates were highest in the core working ages 35 to 54, peaking at more than 29% in the 35–to–44 and 45–to–54 age groups. These are the age groups most likely to be managing the multiple roles associated with career and family responsibilities.

Stress tapered off at older ages: seniors, at 11.5%, were the least likely to find their days stressful.

Among those who reported that their days were quite a bit or extremely stressful, 83.0% said that they were satisfied or very satisfied with life, compared with 95.8% of those who did not find their days very stressful.

Residents of Quebec (26.1%) and Ontario (24.3%) reported daily stress at rates higher than the national average. Residents of New Brunswick, Manitoba, Alberta and Yukon reported daily stress at about the same as Canada's average; the remaining provinces and territories reported stress rates lower than the national average.


End notes

1. Heart and Stroke Foundation. "Heart Disease." Health Information. Last updated April 2010. http://www.heartandstroke.ca (accessed May 11, 2010).

2. Statistics Canada. 2001. "Stress and well–being." Health Reports. Vol. 12, no. 3. Statistics Canada Catalogue no. 82-003. p. 22. /studies-etudes/82-003/archive/2001/5626-eng.pdf (accessed May 11, 2010).

References

Heart and Stroke Foundation. "Heart Disease." Health Information. Last updated April 2010. http://www.heartandstroke.ca (accessed May 11, 2010).

Orpana, Heather, Louise Lemyre and Ronald Gravel. 2009. "Income and psychological distress: The role of the social environment." Health Reports. Vol. 20, no. 1. March. Statistics Canada Catalogue no. 82-003. /bsolc/olc-cel/olc-cel?lang=eng&catno=82-003-X200900110772 (May 11, 2010).

Shields, Margot. 2006. "Stress and depression in the employed population." Health Reports. Vol. 17. no. 4. October. Statistics Canada Catalogue no. 82-003. p. 11–29. /studies-etudes/82-003/archive/2006/9495-eng.pdf (accessed May 11, 2010).

Shields, Margot. 2004. "Stress, health and the benefit of social support." Health Reports. Vol. 15, no. 1. January. Statistics Canada Catalogue no. 82-003. p. 9–38. /studies-etudes/82-003/archive/2004/6763-eng.pdf (accessed May 11, 2010).

Statistics Canada. 2001. "Stress and well–being." Health Reports. Vol. 12, no. 3. Statistics Canada Catalogue no. 82-003. p. 22. /studies-etudes/82-003/archive/2001/5626-eng.pdf (accessed May 11, 2010).

Data

Additional data from the Canadian Community Health Survey are available from CANSIM table 105–0501.

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