A certain degree of stress is inevitable in life and is not always all bad, but there is a limit. And when that’s surpassed, stress begins to be a health hazard. In the US alone, stress affects the welfare of more than 100 million people and stress from the workplace may cost society $300 billion every year.
There are multiple causes of stress, so the people at WalletHub decided to have a look at how different cities in America are doing – and we have bad news for Detroit. The capital of Michigan is the most stressed city in the United States. The team looked at 182 cities, including the 150 most populated ones. The team also made sure to include the two most populated cities in each state. Second on the list was Newark, New Jersey, and third was Cleveland, Ohio. On the other end of the spectrum, Fremont, California, was the least stressed of the US major cities. Just above it, there’s Bismark, North Dakota, and Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
This is obviously not representative of individuals’ level of stress and doesn’t even consider how less-privileged groups of people in society are likely under a lot more stress than those who have more. Still, it is an interesting litmus test for where state and local governments, as well as private employers, might want to invest their resources to reduce triggers of stress.
Sources of stress were divided into four main broad categories: health and safety stress, work stress, financial stress, and family stress. To estimate the scores, researchers used established metrics such as weekly work hours, job security, median annual income, divorce rate, share of adults in poor health, and crime rates. The team used 37 different metrics, each scored from zero to 100 and then weighted based on which of the four categories it belonged to. Each of the four categories carried 25 points and the total for each city was given a score out of 100. Detroit scored 63.53 and Fremont scored 25.93. The combination of these different values might not paint a complete picture of stress across America, but it does tell us that it is not a pretty picture.