You might have heard that “deaths of despair” are sharply increasing among the American working class, but is that really what’s behind the rising suicide and opioid use rates?
According to a study conducted by researchers from the University of Michigan, it is not a sense of hopelessness that is killing the working class. Instead, it is the result of years of working hard and striving to achieve financial security. The study found that while drug overdoses and suicide do contribute significantly to “untimely” deaths, so do cardiovascular disease and cancer. This was especially true among people age 65 to 84, a range that indicates the health issues were the result of long-term problems.
Working class Americans aren’t “giving up”, they are working so hard that the stress is literally killing them.
These findings were published by Pacific Standard on June 17th 2019.