Some industries are obviously more stressful than others, especially those that involve physically dangerous activities such as firefighting. But did you know that certain industries have a higher rate of depression than others? Those careers tend to have long hours or are ones where a worker feels that they have very little control in their workplace. Occasionally, the depression can be so debilitating that an employee may feel as if they can no longer work and may even need to go out on long-term disability. The following are a few examples of industries that have a high rate of depression:
- Nursing home or child-care workers. According to Health.com, this is the number one industry when it comes to high rates of depression, with approximately 11 percent of the employees in this field reporting that they had experienced major depression. It's not surprising since these workers have to deal intimately with their charges who are often very needy and may not ever express gratitude for the care they are receiving.
- Social workers. These employees must deal with often heart-wrenching cases of abuse and neglect. And, unfortunately, they sometimes powerless to deal with some of the issues they face.
- Educators. Relatively low pay and pressure coming from parents and administrators can be very stressful for teachers.
Dealing with Depression
So what should you do if you are in a very stressful field and you are experiencing bouts of depression?
- Be aware of your own symptoms and warning signs such as a loss of interest in what is going on around you; extreme fatigue; inability to sleep or excessive sleeping and sudden weight loss.
- Check to see if your employer offers any type of assistance program. Many HR departments have a list of resources to help their employees who are dealing with depression.
When Your Depression is Disabling
In some instances, depression can be so disabling that you may feel like you can no longer work. For example, if you cannot sleep at night, it may be extremely difficult for you to perform your work. This could even become a matter of life and death if you are employed in a field where you work with dangerous equipment or you have to drive for a living. If you feel that your depression has worsened to the point that you can no longer work, you may qualify for long-term disability.
However, it can be very difficult to get a long-term disability claim approved. That is why it is important to hire a lawyer who is experienced in these types of cases to represent your interests. If you decide to hire a lawyer to handle your long-term disability case, you will need to:
- Be receiving treatment from a mental healthcare professional. To win your case, it is best that your care is being provided by a psychologist or psychiatrist.
- Provide documentation about your treatment, including all medical records. Do not assume that your long-term disability carrier has obtained all of the information.
- Complete all paperwork that your lawyer may give you to prove your case. For example, your lawyer may ask you to have a Residual Functional Capacity form filled out.
- Ask your treating physician to assess whether you should be restricted from work because of your depression or as part of your treatment.
- Request statements from coworkers or supervisors who can attest to your condition and any effect it has had on your work.
Again, it must be stressed that it is very important to hire an experienced lawyer if you hope to win a long-term disability case involving depression. Not doing so could cost you a lot in time and money if your case were to be denied.