Frequent business travel bad for mental health, says study

Frequent business travel bad for mental health, says study

Frequent business travel is related to poor health mental outcomes, says a recent study, published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine in December 2017. According to the study, those who travelled for 21 and more nights/per month for work were more likely to take up smoking, have sleep issues and lead a sedentary lifestyle than those who travelled for one to six nights per month for work. Moreover, employees reporting hectic work schedules were likely to have higher scorecards for alcohol dependence, exhibit mild to severe levels of anxiety, and display symptoms of clinical depression.

It is common knowledge that frequent flying causes a bad episode of jet lag.  Besides that, it could also cause a condition known as deep vein thrombosis or blood clot, generally in lower legs. Commercial planes increases the risk of radiation exposure as well. A recurrent traveler, therefore, has high risk of developing physical and mental health problems. Researchers from the Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health suggested that employers should provide programs that would help counter the stress and discomfort associated with frequent travel. It could be giving employees accommodations with access to physical activity and healthy food.

How much travel is too much?

“Travel as much as you can, as far as you can, as long as you can. Life is not meant to be lived in one place.”

When one is young, it’s a dream to live like a backpacker. Many young people dream of visiting places, knowing new cultures, acquiring new skills and tasting delicacies they have never eaten before. However, after a month or two of recurrent travelling, constantly packing and unpacking, and waiting at the terminal, while the stomach gurgles discomfortingly, an individual longs for the comfort of home. He/she wishes then to connect with friends instead of strangers in a foreign land, and get respite from exotic food a person might be consuming every day. What one eagerly awaits, when he/she suffers from a travel burnout or a meltdown, is a familiar atmosphere.

Travel increases the neuroplasticity of the brain and maximizes the creativity. However, when one is intimidated by deadlines, and business presentations on almost daily basis, travelling becomes just another chore that has to be handled with accuracy. As flights are often prone to delays and other lapses, a business traveler can have a hard time adjusting. Stress and anxiety are frequent when things do not go their way. Business travelers also suffer from chronic loneliness. Even when a person is constantly updating one’s status via social media, the warmth of live human interaction is not evident.

Sound mental health a must for good life

Physical health is of prime importance, but sound mental health is just as crucial for the overall wellness of an individual. A good state of mind is characterized by the following:

  • Ability to take timely and efficient decisions
  • Ability to lead a balanced life in spite of challenges one is accosted with on a daily basis
  • Pursuit of hobbies or interests to relax the mind
  • Better control of moods and behavior amid hardships
  • Sense of responsibility and good connections with family and friends
  • Ability to give and receive love and affection
  • Grip on the reality instead of living in a world of make believe
  • Good time management skills and sense of prudence

In case, personal, social or professional circumstances cause a strain that is well beyond the tolerance level of individual, a mental breakdown can occur. Sometimes, the individual could decide to shut down emotionally and keep all social contact to a minimum. This could be the sign of deteriorating mental health, which can lead to depression, anxiety disorder or any other mental illness.

It is important to get the problem diagnosed in time to prevent it from worsening. At Sovereign Health, we offer evidence-based care to diagnose and treat mental disorders at our reputed treatment centers for mental health in California. We offer an array of recovery plans for a variety of mental disorders, including anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, bipolar disorders, schizophrenia and various trauma-related disorders. Our trained therapists tailor each program to suit the individual needs in order to treat the person holistically. Call at our 24/7 helpline 866-973-7164 to know more about our finest mental health treatment centers in California. You can even chat online with a representative for further assistance.

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