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No need to worry? Here are the stress ‘hot spots’ in the USA

Louisiana is perhaps the most stressed state in the entire USA.

Everyday life, but how happy are we? — Image by © Tim Sandle
Everyday life, but how happy are we? — Image by © Tim Sandle

Spring has sprung and with April being U.S. Stress Awareness Month and money, the economy and health issues proving to be the biggest stressors last year, finding ways to reduce stress are important in terms of personal health.

This task can be facilitated by different geographical locales. This appears to be the case within the U.S., according to analysis performed by the personal-finance website WalletHub.

The finance firm has issued a report on 2024’s Most & Least Stressed States, demonstrating where U.S. citizens can best take care of their mental health, plus which states are in need of improvement.

For the analysis, WalletHub compared the 50 states across 40 key metrics. The data set ranged from average hours worked per week to the personal bankruptcy rate to the share of adults getting adequate sleep.

From this, the most stressed states were found to be:

1. Louisiana

2. Mississippi

3. Nevada

4. New Mexico

5. Arkansas

6. West Virginia

7. Alabama

8. Kentucky

9. Oklahoma

10. Texas

Louisiana is perhaps the most stressed state, in large part because it has one of the highest violent crime rates per capita and property crime rates per capita.

In contrast, the least stressed states were identified as:

41. Hawaii

42. Nebraska

43. Delaware

44. North Dakota

45. Idaho

46. Iowa

47. New Hampshire

48. Utah

49. South Dakota

50. Minnesota

Within the data sets there were some interesting contrasts. For example, North Dakota was found to possess the lowest unemployment rate, which is 2.7 times lower than in Nevada, the highest.

Another important economic measure is relative poverty. Here, New Hampshire has the lowest share of the population living in poverty, which is 2.6 times lower than in Mississippi, the highest. Poverty has a connection with health. On this measure, Hawaii and Massachusetts have the lowest share of adults in fair or poor health, which is 1.8 times lower than in Mississippi, the highest.

Breaking up relationship[s is another indicator of stress. Utah has the lowest separation and divorce rate, which is 1.7 times lower than in New Mexico, the highest.

Another indicator is mental illness. Data associated with this is medical visits and with this, Massachusetts has the most psychologists per 100,000 residents, which is 6.4 times more than in Alabama, the fewest.

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Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, business, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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