(STUDY FINDS) -- WASHINGTON — The Great Recession put a massive dent in financial stability for millions Americans and led to a steep rise in unemployment, but for many, the effects damaged far more than just their bottom line. A new study shows that those who suffered hardship from the economic slowdown were more likely to experience a lasting decline in mental health, including anxiety, problematic drug use, and depression.
Researchers say these mental health issues were still evident years after the official end of the recession, but were obscured when studying trends in large, population-level datasets.
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“Our study provides a new perspective on the impact of The Great Recession, showing that population-level analyses likely miss important patterns in the data,” explains lead researcher Miriam K. Forbes, in a release by the Association for Psychological Science. “By looking at individuals’ mental health and experiences of the recession, we could see a different picture.”