Bullying strikes at the very heart

to Suffer 'mobbing' could increase by nearly 60% the risk of developing a cardiovascular problem, according to a new study Insomnia, anxiety, stress, depres

Bullying strikes at the very heart

to Suffer 'mobbing' could increase by nearly 60% the risk of developing a cardiovascular problem, according to a new study

Insomnia, anxiety, stress, depression... These are some of the symptoms that tell of those who suffer harassment in the workplace, who go to work every day under the screams, the humiliation and the scorn of the boss or peers.

The so-called 'mobbing' has an impact on the health, affects the physical and mental wellbeing of those affected. And its footprint could be even higher than previously thought, according to results of a new investigation. Their data show that it could increase very significantly the cardiovascular risk.

The heart is also severely affected by this type of abuse, reflected in this study published in the journal 'European Heart Journal', which was followed up for a mean of 12 years 79.201 individuals swedes and danes who had previously participated in other research.

At the start of the study, none of the participants had heart problems. And each one of them had to answer a questionnaire on their work situation in which you were asked directly if they faced harassment or violence in the workplace and, if it was the case, how often he had these episodes.

Using official records, the researchers, led by Tianwei Xu, of the University of Copenhagen, checked how many of the participants had developed some type of heart problem in the years of follow-up, and what relationship he kept that fact with regard to harassment in the workplace. To eliminate from the equation of possible confounding factors, it also took into account other important data, such as the body mass index of the participants, whether or not they were smokers, if they consumed alcohol or if they had a job on shifts, among other issues.

analysis pointed out that the cardiovascular risk is increased by 59% among those who had been given living situations of harassment in the workplace, and by 25% among those who reported any episode or the threat of violence. The risk grew even more -up to 120%- in the members of the study who had reported being bullied almost every day.

Although the study is observational and, therefore, does not allow to establish a cause-effect relationship between workplace harassment and the risk of heart disease, the researchers stress that their results are very robust and should be taken into account. "The effect of workplace harassment and violence on the incidence of cardiovascular disease in the general population is comparable to other risk factors, like diabetes or the consumption of alcohol, which emphasizes the importance of prevention," he said in a statement Xu, who estimates that "5% of cases of cardiovascular disease" could be avoided by addressing the harassment and violence at work.

According to a study by the Association against the Psychological Harassment and Moral in the Work of 2017, in Spain up to 15% of the workers suffer some type of 'mobbing' in the workplace.

Xu anticipates that the next step in the research will be to elucidate what mechanisms are involved in the association found. Their hypothesis is that, on the one hand, the stress of the harassment causes alterations in blood pressure, which can damage the blood vessels and the heart. But, in addition, they believe that anxiety can lead to unhealthy lifestyle habits.

Coincides with that point of view Alfonso Valle, a member of the Section of Vascular Risk and Cardiac Rehabilitation of the Spanish Society of Cardiology: "When one is feeling stressed or high anxiety is more likely to eat poorly, be more sedentary, use tobacco, or other poisons," he explains.

any way, both this specialist as the authors of the research point out that the conclusions of the work should be confirmed by further studies that, among other things, improve some of the limitations of the study, such as the fact that participants only reported in one occasion, and by autocuestionario, about your job situation.

The economic crisis also affects the cardiovascular health

there is increasing evidence that different psychosocial factors exert a considerable influence on cardiovascular health. What happens around us and the way we perceive it and experience it directly impacts on the functioning of our heart, as they have shown in recent years a number of investigations. For example, several studies have shown that periods of economic recession does not only affect the quality of life, future plans and the stability of the citizenship, but also damage to the engine of the body. So, in 2008, a research of the University of Cambridge (Uk), published in the journal 'Globalization and Health' concluded, after analysing the banking crisis produced between 1960 and 2002, that this type of event increases the number of deaths by infarction in 6.4% in the rich countries. In the impoverished nations, this impact is even greater. The researchers calculated that if the Uk was experiencing a global banking crisis would occur between 1,200 and 5,000 more deaths by heart attacks in the country.

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Date Of Update: 27 November 2018, 20:00

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