Over half of Brits feel mental health would improve – if finances were better

More than half of Brits believe they would be coping better with their mental health – if they weren't struggling financially amid the cost-of-living crisis, research has found.

Nearly three in ten (27%) say the economic crisis has negatively impacted their mental wellbeing – with 24% saying it has taken just as much of a toll as the Covid-19 pandemic.

Some of the top things that have left them disheartened as they strive to save money include cutting back on socialising, gym memberships, and even nutritious food – with 14% even admitting they are showering less, to cut down on their energy bills.

And four in ten are dreading the upcoming winter season, as they fear they will not be able to afford to heat their homes.

The research of 2,000 adults, commissioned by British Gas, found the cities struggling the most mentally include Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Leicester – followed by Newcastle, London, and Leeds.

As a result, British Gas has teamed up with Professor Green, to raise awareness of the struggles so many are facing, and to highlight the free support available in the new phase of the British Gas Post Office Pop-Ups.

The musician and mental health advocate said: “As a parent, your first instinct is to protect and provide – and when you’re doing everything you can, and that’s still not enough, it has a profound impact on your mental health.

“Shame, stigma, and fear can keep people from speaking up for help, but it’s the best thing you can do – for yourself, your family, and your community.

“Stress and anxiety breed in uncertainty, so I really encourage you to visit a British Gas Post Office Pop-Up, or contact the British Gas Energy Trust, to help you gain confidence in, and control of, your future.”

The research also found that other sacrifices being made include not buying birthday gifts for loved ones (21%) – with 5% even admitting their kids are missing out on new toys.

However, just over half (55%) believe their mental health would definitely improve if they were more financially stable.

People in Manchester were found to be most likely to skip using heat or electricity to keep their homes warm, while those in Edinburgh were most likely to report that they have had issues with money that have led to incurring additional debt, like credit cards.

Only 27% of all adults polled, via OnePoll, are confident they are accessing all the benefits they may be entitled to when it comes to support with their energy bills.

One in ten also believe the rising cost of energy has caused them a great deal of additional stress – and 25% baldly state they are expecting to struggle to pay their energy bills through the rest of the year.

British Gas Energy Trust CEO, Jessica Taplin, said: “Debt and money stresses are debilitating, which is why we are delighted to be offering money and energy advisors, funded by us, in Post Offices across the country.

“Working with an artist like Professor Green can really help raise awareness, and let people know it’s good to talk about the things that are worrying them.”

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