The study found that 17% of the workforce experienced stress in 2015, up from 8% in 2010 – one of the steepest increases among the 10 western European countries surveyed.
The Irish figure was still below the 19% average.
Employees were deemed to be experiencing job stress if they reported experiencing stress ‘always’ or ‘most of the time’, along with reactions to stress such as general fatigue, anxiety and sleep disturbance.
Between 2010 and 2015, the numbers of Irish workers experiencing stress reactions soared from 21% to 38%. Workers most likely to report stress were in the health sector (18%), public administration (16%), and manufacturing (15%) – while retail and construction showed the lowest levels.
Stress was most likely to be triggered in Irish employees by emotional demands – including dealing with angry customers or clients, or being forced to hide their feelings.
The Health and Safety Authority-funded study can be found via www.esri.ie/pubs/RS84.pdf.