Stress levels soar due to illness and money worries
The proportion of people living in a major urban suburb who suffer stress has escalated, with nearly seven in 10 saying they are under psychological pressure due to finances, family, illness, work and unemployment.
The findings have emerged in a major new study of almost 350 households across Tallaght in south west Dublin. It found stress affected 59pc in 2001 - but it is now hitting 67pc.
Almost one in two of these has had to visit their GP as a result, and 23pc are on prescription medication, said the study, carried out by the Department of Public Health and Primary Care, Trinity College Dublin, and which was funded by the Adelaide Health Foundation and Tallaght Hospital.
The findings provide a snapshot of the pressures faced by communities after years of austerity.
Nearly one in 10 of household members was on a waiting list to receive treatment at Tallaght Hospital - of these nearly half (48pc) were waiting six months or less for treatment.
One fifth were waiting between seven and 12 months and nearly a third had been in the queue for 13 months or longer. Almost three in four were satisfied with the care that they received.
Some 41pc of those surveyed are living in houses in which one or two people reside - up 22pc since 2001. A further 42pc are in houses with three or four people and 17pc are part of households with between five and 11 residents.
One third are living in State-supported accommodation, an increase of 5pc since 2001.
There was a 25pc decrease in the number of households with at least one smoker compared with the last study - down from 69pc to 44pc. More than 83pc of the main carers never take strenuous exercise and just 16pc are taking the recommended level of physical activity by exercising on five or more days a week.