Americans Stressed About Nation's Future, Poll Finds

From Drugs.com - November 1, 2017

Americans Stressed About Nation's Future, Poll Finds

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 1, 2017 -- It's a high-anxiety time: Nearly two-thirds of Americans are stressed out by thinking about the future of the United States, a new survey finds.

Stress rates tied to worries about where the nation is headed were slightly higher than rates for "regular" sources of stress, such as money and work.

"We are seeing significant stress transcending party lines," Arthur Evans Jr., chief executive officer of the American Psychological Association, said in a news release from the group, which sponsored the poll.

About 63 percent of survey respondents cited the country's future as a very or somewhat significant source of stress, versus 62 percent who acknowledged financial stress and 61 percent who cited job-related stress.

The survey of more than 3,400 adults, conducted in August, found that 59 percent of respondents said they consider this the lowest point in American history that they can remember. Poll participants included people who had lived through World War II, the Vietnam War, the Cuban Missile Crisis and the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Roughly six in 10 people cited current social divisions in the nation as the cause of stress.

"The uncertainty and unpredictability tied to the future of our nation is affecting the health and well-being of many Americans in a way that feels unique to this period in recent history," Evans said.

Among respondents, proportionately more Democrats saw the country's future as stressful: 73 percent, versus 56 percent of Republicans and 59 percent of independents.

When thinking about the future of the United States, the issues most often identified as stress-inducing were: health care (cited by 43 percent of respondents); the economy (35 percent); trust in government (32 percent); hate crimes (31 percent); crime (31 percent); wars/conflicts with other countries (30 percent); terrorist attacks in the United States (30 percent); unemployment and low wages (22 percent); and climate change and environmental issues (21 percent).


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