Farmers experiencing drought-related stress need targeted support

Farmers experiencing drought-related stress need targeted support

Emma Austin, University of Newcastle; Anthony Kiem, University of Newcastle; Brian Kelly, University of Newcastle; David Perkins, University of Newcastle; Jane Rich, University of Newcastle, and Tonelle Handley, University of Newcastle

For farmers, drought is a major source of stress. Their livelihoods and communities depend on the weather. To better support farmers and their families we need to better understand the impact of drought on them and their communities.

Our research, published today in the Medical Journal of Australia, found young farmers who live and work on farms in isolated areas and are in financial hardship are the most likely to experience personal drought-related psychological stress.

Read more:
The lessons we need to learn to deal with the ‘creeping disaster’ of drought

What our study found

To examine farmers’ mental health during droughts, we examined data from the Australian Rural Mental Health Study and rainfall conditions in the months before farmers completed the survey.

Importantly, the study ...

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