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Work Stress, Home Effects

New research from the University of Amsterdam finds a link between stress at work and the inability to express feelings. The inability to express feelings, or alexithymia, is a primary risk factor for various psychiatric disorders. Conversely, secondary alexithymia is believed to be an inadequate coping reaction to a stressful situation.

The study investigated the level and type of alexithymia associated with occupational stress. On 2 occasions, 69 patients with work-related stress and 62 healthy participants completed self-report questionnaires to measure alexithymia, burnout complaints, and general distress complaints.

Alexithymia was significantly elevated among patients. In the patient group, absolute stability of two alexithymia dimensions (identifying feelings, describing feelings) and relative stability of one alexithymia dimension (identifying feelings) was lower than in the healthy group.

Cross-sectional group differences became small and nonsignificant after adjustment for distress complaints. Among patients, change in alexithymia was moderately associated with symptom recovery.

The researchers concluded that an increased difficulty to express feeling among patients with occupational stress can indicate the presence of secondary alexithymia.

The study is published in the September issue of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics.

Source: Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics

Work Stress, Home Effects

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2018). Work Stress, Home Effects. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 20, 2019, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Aug 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Aug 2018
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