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Mental Health in the Construction Industry

Shocking statistics show that suicide kills more people in the construction industry than falls from height.

Ensuring that health and safety procedures are followed on a construction site is usually the top priority – but there is only so much protection that PPE and knowledge can provide. Not to mention, that protection is only physical. What about ‘mental protection’? Surely, it is only right that mental health and safety is given the same level of importance and investment as other hazards on site.

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In an industry that is predominantly male, specific risks associated with male mental health also need to be considered. The widespread ‘tough guy’ image that is related to the construction industry is very much to blame. Unfortunately, asking for help and admitting you may be struggling aren't things that come naturally to the majority of those working in the industry – leading to workers often suffering in silence. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

We all need to be aware of the signs of poor mental health and well-being, and how we can be supportive and encourage people to talk. Don't underestimate the impact you can make just by letting someone know that you are there for them. You could save their life.

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A few of the common warning signs are:

  • A change in personality. If someone is acting like a very different person, or not acting or feeling like themselves.
  • Uncharacteristic anxiety, anger, or changes in mood.
  • Social withdrawal and isolation.
  • Lack of self-care or risky behaviours.
  • A sense of hopelessness or feeling overwhelmed.

There are many more signs that could be listed, but it is important that any change you notice is discussed. It could be as simple as just asking someone how they are and letting them know that you are there for them if they need to talk.

Mates in Mind's campaign statement ‘Be a mate. Be the change.’ prompts exactly this. So, who will you ‘be a mate’ to today?

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About Mates in Mind

Mates in Mind is registered UK charity, aiming to raise awareness, address the stigma of poor mental health and promote positive mental well-being across workplaces.

Catsurveys are proud supporters of Mates in Mind. If you would like to become a supporter and find out more about the work that Mates in Mind do, visit their website here.

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