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Depression Could Cost You Your Job

Depression Could Cost You Your Job
WebMD Health News

Dec. 9, 2002 -- Depression could cost you your job, if you don't get help. People who are depressed are three times more likely to end up unemployed.

In a study that tracked more than 5,000 adults for five years, researchers found that 42% of those who showed symptoms of depression in the study's first year eventually lost their jobs. This pattern was true despite ethnic group, marital status, educational level, income level, even whether they were employed part-time or full-time.

The study appears in the December Archives of Internal Medicine.

Those who are depressed are more likely to call in sick and to be less productive in general than other people, says lead researcher Mary A. Whooley, MD, an internist at the San Francisco VA Medical Center and an epidemiologist at the University of California, San Francisco, in a news release.

It's a wake-up call for those who resist treatment for their depression, says Whooley.

"There's a huge stigma associated with depression," she writes." People need to realize that depression is a disease just like diabetes and that there are plenty of treatments that offer relief from suffering and can also help you keep your job. People need to overcome the stigma and not be so embarrassed about saying: 'I need help.'"

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