Advertisement

International Journal of Public Health

, Volume 54, Issue 2, pp 88–95 | Cite as

Work-life imbalance and mental health among male and female employees in Switzerland

  • Oliver Hämmig
  • Georg Bauer
Original article

Abstract

Objectives

To investigate the prevalence and mental health effects of an unequal work-life balance (WLB) including potential gender differences.

Methods

A cross-sectional study based on a representative sample of the Swiss employed population aged 20 to 64 (women: n = 1661; men: n = 1591).

Results

Based on a single-item measure, more than every seventh employee in Switzerland indicated major difficulties combining work and private life. In certain socio-demographic categories, up to 30% showed such work-life conflict (WLC). For both genders, work-life imbalance turned out to be a risk factor affecting mental health. Employees with self-reported WLC presented a significantly higher relative risk for poor self-rated health (women: aOR = 2.6/men: aOR = 2.0), negative emotions and depression (aOR = 3.0/3.1), low energy and optimism (aOR = 2.1/1.6), fatigue (aOR = 2.4/2.6), and sleep disorders (aOR = 1.8/1.5) compared to employees with no WLC.

Conclusions

Internationally, few data on the prevalence of WLC exist. In Switzerland, work-life imbalance is not a marginal phenomenon among the workforce and needs to be addressed as a notable public and mental health issue.

Keywords:

Work-life conflict Work-life balance Mental health Gender differences Switzerland 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Verlag, Basel 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Public and Organizational Health, Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine, Center for Organizational and Occupational SciencesUniversity of Zurich, ETH ZurichZurichSwitzerland

Personalised recommendations