Work from home may up the risk of insomnia and stress, says UN study

If you think you are better off working from home as you can avoid the traffic, office politics and the stressful environment, then your are wrong. According to a United Nation labor study conducted in 15 countries, working from home may result in higher stress, longer working duration and insomnia. The study was about the effect of technological advancement that enabled people to work remotely. Experts and workers from 10 European Union member states, the US, Japan, India, Brazil and Argentina gave interview for this study. The joint study report by UN International Labour Organisation (ILO) and Eurofund said that the advancement in the digital technologies allow people to avoid rush hour commute, more flexibility, increase productivity and a better work-life balance. (ALSO READ Best Work time Hacks to loose weight: 8 easy ways to burn calories during office hours).

As per the study, there are several types of employees, including workers doing occasional telework and information and communication technologies mobile work (T/ICTM )and home-based teleworkers, who use digital technologies to perform their work outside the office. The cons of working from home are that you usually end up working for longer time and sleep problems. There can be stress due to overlapping personal and work life. As per the study, people who work regularly from home tend to report sleeping issue more than those who work in an office. It said, “In India, survey results indicate that a higher proportion of T/ICTM workers work long hours (defined as more than 48 hours per week) than office-based workers (66 per cent compared to 59 per cent).” (ALSO READ: Best midnight snacks for weight loss: Top 10 yummy and guilt-free foods you can snack on in the night).

There are differences between high-mobile employees who are more at risk of health issues and teleworkers who work from home and enjoy better balance between their work and personal life. As per the report, there is a need for disconnect to distinguish between personal life and work. Germany and France are already planning arrangements like the ‘right to be disconnected’ at the company level in the French Labour Code’s revised version. Adapting formal part-time teleworking is recommended by the report to help people working from home improve their health and maintain a healthy relation with co-workers.

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