Photo courtesy of Hispanicize

Stress is one of the most critical factors in mental health. For Latinos, who are among the most affected citizens with higher stress levels than the rest of the population, stress is a silent threat to their success.

The influence of external factors and how they negatively affect us is significant when discussing stress. Stress is often triggered by external factors, whether it is the economy, emotional imbalances, the impact of racism, the difference in ideologies, or even political conflicts. Currently, we must add the powerful effect of the COVID-19 pandemic, which hit us hard, both economically and emotionally, during the confinement.

Did you know that high levels of stress can lead to psychological disorders such as depression and anxiety?

Why do Latinos suffer more stress?

According to a study conducted by the American Psychological Association (APA), adults of Hispanic origin show a higher than average stress level, resulting in a 6.1 compared to Whites (5.3), Blacks (5.3), and Asians (5.2), with 10 being the highest level of stress and one being the lowest.

These high levels result from four key aspects of any adult’s life: family, health, employment, and money. Latinos’ struggle in these areas adds an extra degree of stress to the average white adult due to the multiple layers of inequality.

The stress produced by work situations, such as long hours or low wages, affects Latino communities more than other adults. In other cases, family is the main factor, and stress is produced by going through circumstances in which there is family separation — including immigration problems and social dynamics.

These circumstances often lead to such high levels of stress that they begin to suffer physical ailments. The Ulysses Syndrome, also known as the Immigrant Syndrome, produces chronic and multiple levels of stress in people who are forced to migrate and leave behind everything they know.

The Effect of Stress on the Success of Latinos

According to the American Institute of Stress, work is the most significant cause of stress in American adults. High workloads, toxic environments, low wages, and lack of time to manage work and personal life are just a few aspects that can affect an adult’s success.

All of these issues directly impact productivity, and for Latinos who are constantly under higher levels of stress, this is one more obstacle to manage.