Date
21 January 2017
Gender wage gap is driving anxiety and depression among women, according to US researchers. Photo: Bloomberg
Gender wage gap is driving anxiety and depression among women, according to US researchers. Photo: Bloomberg

Gender wage gap fueling women’s anxiety disorders: US study

A new US study shows that women with lower incomes than their male counterparts are more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety.

The risk of women who make less money than men developing an anxiety disorder is more than four times higher, according to researchers at Columbia University, Thomson Reuters Foundation reported.

For their study, researchers compared women and men with matching education and work experiences, looking at data from more than 22,000 working US adults ages 30 to 65.

Women earning less than their male counterparts faced odds of diagnosed depression nearly 2.5 times higher, said the study, which was published in the Social Science & Medicine journal.

But when women’s income equaled or exceeded men’s, their odds of depression stood at similar levels and the probability of an anxiety disorder greatly decreased, the study showed.

“Our results show that some of the gender disparities in depression and anxiety may be due to the effects of structural gender inequality in the workforce and beyond,” Jonathan Platt, the study’s lead author, was quoted as saying.

Women in the United States working full-time, year-round are paid 79 cents for every dollar paid to men, according to US Census Bureau data.

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