THE mental health of Glaswegians is in worse shape than it was five years ago, amid fears of a "Big Brother" culture, a top psychologist claims.

A survey carried out ahead of Mental Health Awareness Week showed more than a quarter of people in the city admitted their wellbeing has deteriorated since 2014.

Professor Vincent Egan, former director of forensic psychology at Glasgow Caledonian University, believes the figures have soared because of mass surveillance and social media.

Dr Egan said: “There is a tightening of the screw in many different ways in life.

“There’s more regulation, supervision and managerialism that leads to people being concerned about what they say, or worrying while they’re driving whether they’re in the correct lane because of automatic cameras.

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“I believe people are more tense and the structuring of society these days does make it more difficult for people to relax.

“Life is more nippy than it used to be, between phones and emails and social media.

“Back in 2014, life was busy then too but perhaps the combination of social media and increased regulation and supervision, is leading to people not being able to exercise common sense as much.

“Everyone is now on show and people can record it."

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The research, carried out by one of the UK's leading CBD testing companies, also revealed that 18 per cent of people in Glasgow felt they had suffered underlying symptoms of depression or anxiety throughout their career.

A total of 29 per cent of people believe the number of hours they work per week significantly affects their mental health.

Dr Egan continued: “People are always on – they are often sent work emails and they’re expected to respond to them all the time, including over holidays and weekends.

“They never get a chance to be off and that’s going to cause stress. "For people that are vulnerable to a mental illness that’s going to be an aggravating factor of the symptoms.

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“There is often a desire for people to find a better work/ life balance and perhaps this is a good example of things currently being in the wrong proportions.”

More than a fifth of people taking part in the survey said they were wary of approaching a doctor about their mental health as they don’t want to be prescribed medication that may be too severe for their symptoms.

See Me Scotland's mental health charity boss Calum Irving said: “We can see from this, that although more people say they are struggling with their mental health and asking for help, more still needs to be done to ensure that everyone feels confident and safe to open up, and that when they do, they are treated fairly, with dignity and respect.


“The institutions that employ, educate and care for us must be proactive in preventing discrimination and protecting our rights. "