met the criteria for depression classification
were classified as having high levels of perceived stress
met the criteria for anxiety classification
*Results from the National Survey of Farmer Mental Health, involving 1100 producers from across Canada. © Dr. Andria Jones-Bitton 2018. All rights reserved.
Stories of strength
Our gratitude to the people who shared their paths to bring wellness and balance back to their lives.
"As a couple, we were struggling in silence trying to protect the other. We were each blaming ourselves for our hard farming year and financial stress."
"In farming, we’re taught to tough it out, to deal with things ourselves and figure them out. But sometimes that’s not possible."
If you need help
View the list of mental health help lines and what you can expect when you call. If you are in crisis, please visit your local emergency department or call 911 immediately.
Producer Cynthia Beck, a suicide intervention responder in rural Saskatchewan, identifies ways to battle the physical, emotional and mental isolation agriculture’s rural lifestyle can produce.
Producer Cynthia Beck, a suicide intervention responder in rural Saskatchewan, suggests we can improve mental health when we know which stressors on our farms we can control and which we cannot.
Kim Keller of Do More Ag shares her journey and strategies for mental wellness and why she advocates for a better understanding of mental health in agriculture.
Helping a loved one
Having a family member with a mental illness is stressful. In addition to coping with day-to-day living, families can experience tremendous guilt, fear, grief, anxiety, self-doubt and uncertainty.
Each family member may react differently to the situation, but it's important everyone understands that the person dealing with a mental illness must always be treated with dignity and respect.
How often do you run on empty?
You are the most important machinery in your operation, and a little self-maintenance goes a long way. Eating balanced meals, staying hydrated, and getting enough sleep are all important in maintaining your physical and mental health.
3 tips for taking care of yourself
- Regular exercise reduces symptoms of stress, depression and anxiety, especially if your work means you spend a lot of time sitting.
- Assess your mental health from time to time and ask for help if you need it. Learn to recognize when someone else may be having problems and assist them in contacting resources for support.
- Once a week, do something you are passionate about.
Common stressors on the farm
What would top your list of stressors? Identifying the cause is the first step to better managing stress.
3 signs you might need a break
- Tiredness and stress can lead to poor performance that has nothing to do with your ability to do your job. If you find yourself making frequent mistakes, schedule a decent break.
- Stress of tiredness can affect your ability to cope. When you start to resent the chores you need to do or feel you're just going in circles, that resentment creeps into your behaviour towards others. And that puts all your relationships at risk.
- It's natural to have plans for the future, but if you spend hours dreaming about quitting this industry you once loved - without any plans about what you're going to do next - take it as a warning sign.
Mental well-being is the combination of:
- How you feel about yourself, the world and your life
- Your ability to solve problems and overcome challenges
- Your ability to build relationships with others and contribute to your communities
- Your ability to achieve your goals at work and in life
How stress impacts your physical health
Feeling stressed for periods of time can take a toll on your mental and physical health. Our bodies respond to stress by releasing stress hormones, which make blood pressure, heart rates, and blood sugar levels go up. The first symptoms are relatively mild, like chronic headaches and increased susceptibility to colds. However, with increased exposure to chronic stress, more serious health problems may develop.
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Information provided on this webpage is general content and is not a substitute for professional advice. Concerns of anxiety, stress, depression and other mental health impacts should be discussed with your doctor or other mental health professional. If you are in crisis, please visit your local emergency department or call 911 immediately.