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Study finds long-term mental health effects from Great Recession

It has been 10 years since the Great Recession, when millions of Americans lost their jobs, their savings and their homes as a housing market bubble burst, sending the global economy into a tailspin. Though the recession officially ended in June 2009, the effects linger on. As a recent psychological study shows, for many people those effects go beyond the purely financial.

According to a study published in Clinical Psychological Science, people who suffered a serious financial impact from the recession, such as foreclosure or job loss, had a significantly higher likelihood of mental health issues, including depression, anxiety and drug abuse today.

Researchers found that, within the group of people affected, certain socioeconomic categories of people were more likely to suffer specific mental health issues. For example, people without a college degree were more likely to experience anxiety. Single people who lost their homes or experienced other housing hardships during the recession were more likely to have problems with drugs, the researchers said.

Interestingly, the study found that people who had financial advantages before they suffered setbacks during the Great Recession had higher than average rates of anxiety years afterward. Researchers suggested that perhaps these people were hit hard by the sudden change in their social status.

As economic analysts point to ominous signs that the economy is heading for a slowdown, it can be sobering to look at these long-term effects. It's also a good time to remember that there is help available for people who are struggling with their finances. A lawyer with experience in debt relief and personal bankruptcy can help people understand their options for getting out of debt, stopping foreclosure and more.

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