Working For Lower Wages Has Been Officially Linked With A Weaker Mental Health. Sigh! Another Bad News For Women
Payment gaps have always been one of the worse issues that people have had to face around the globe. Being paid less is always hard. People who receive lower wages have to deal with a lot of problems including the inability to afford luxuries, the inability to support themselves with required basic amenities and of course, when it comes to supporting their families, they get to hear a lot from their own family/peers.
Along with this, it’s always a bad feeling to put in the hard work and effort into a job and receive lower wages, it feels like your value has been diminished. That’s one of the worst feelings in the world because one begins to question themselves and their skills because of this, creating emotional and mental chaos, in the wake of these thoughts. This has been a painful reality for women, for ages.
Historically, women have always been paid lower wages as compared to men and this has caused a grand gender gap in the world. Inequal payments are a harsh reality for women and they are still dealing with the painful effect of the daily, on a daily basis. Sadly enough, according to a new study, the sad aftermath associated with receiving lower wages doesn’t just stop there.
Also Read: Study Reveals Women’s Earnings Continue To Drop After Childbirth. Is Gender Pay Gap Progress A Myth?
What Is The Effect Of This Gap On Mental Health?
A new study in the American Journal of Epidemiology compared the wages the participants drew between 1992 and 2004. They managed to divide the participants into three categories based on whether they never earned low wages in their career, earned low wages only at certain points in life, or persistently earned low wages.
Then, all the participant’s mental health and cognition were assessed, this is how the researchers realised that these participants are prone to weak mental health, and dementia. They also realised that this group of people also end up ageing vigorously faster as compared to those who earn well.
“Women disproportionately make up the group of workers earning low wages. The findings indicate that systemic prejudices, such as the gender pay gap, and motherhood penalty — don’t just hurt women’s careers, but also their quality of life, in the long run,” said lead author Katrina Kezios from the department of epidemiology at Columbia Mailman School. In the past. series lack of education in childhood, hypertension, depression, physical inactivity, diabetes, and infrequent social contact have also been seen as major risk factors for dementia. This new addition along with the older factors puts women at a greater risk than ever.
Also Read: According To World Economic Forum, Cost-of-Living Crisis Results In A Continuously Widening Gender-Gap
What Can Be Done About This?
“Our findings suggest that social policies that enhance the financial wellbeing of low-wage workers may be especially beneficial for cognitive health… Future work should rigorously examine the number of dementia cases and excess years of cognitive ageing that could be prevented under different hypothetical scenarios that would increase the minimum hourly wage,” recommends co-author Adina Zeki Al Hazzouri, an assistant professor of epidemiology at Columbia Mailman School.
It’s time we take this matter seriously and protect women and men alike from this rapid decline in terms of their mental health. We need to ensure that the growth and social placement of these people are improved from the education level itself.
Along with this, we must also ensure that there is a pre-defined and increased minimum wage that ensures that nobody is paid a wage that is so low that they cannot process through life and afford basic amenities. It’s about time we work towards creating a more equal world. Sounds like a good plan, doesn’t it?
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