New study finds musicians may be up to three times more likely to suffer from depression compared to the general public

A pilot survey by the University of Westminster and charity Help Musicians UK has uncovered the new statistics

A new study has found that musicians and music industry professionals are more than three times likely than the general public to suffer from anxiety or depression.

The ‘Can Music Make You Sick?’ study, published yesterday (November 1) by the charity Help Musicians UK, has been conducted by the University of Westminster and its think tank, MusicTank, which looks into business matters pertaining to the music industry.

As Pitchfork reports, the study’s first preliminary findings from a survey of 2,211 people (the majority of whom identified as musicians) found that 71% of its respondents said they had suffered from panic attacks and/or high levels of anxiety, while 65% reported that they had suffered from depression.

In comparison to those figures, a report cited by the study that was compiled by the Office for National Statistics between 2010 and 2013 on ‘Measuring National Well-being’ suggested that of those over the age of 16 in the UK, 19% of the population suffer from anxiety and/or depression.

‘Can Music Make You Sick?”s first findings also uncovered that while musicians take solace in making music, working in the music industry might be contributing to their levels of mental-ill health. Such reasons as “poor working conditions”, “a lack of recognition for one’s work”, and “issues related to the problems of being a woman in the industry” were cited by a large number of respondents in the survey as possible reasons for this.

Asked if they found it easy to get help, 53% of respondents said no.

The next stage of ‘Can Music Make You Sick?”s study will “delve deeper into these issues and explore a range of solutions.” Meanwhile, Help Musicians UK hope to launch a nationwide mental-health service for those in the music industry in 2017.