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Women Admit to Worrying More So Than Men, Study Reports

Update Date: Mar 15, 2013 01:15 PM EDT

Worrying and displaying concern over situations have often been perceived as womanly and motherly, and a new study suggests that these stereotypes might not be so far from the truth. Based on the findings and statistics of a recent survey administered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), women tend to admit their emotions regarding anxiety and concern more often than men did. However, whether or not women actually worry more than men cannot be inferred.

The CDC's survey recorded that roughly 22 percent of women on average felt worried, anxious, and/or nervous either daily or weekly. The percentage of men who felt the same was 16. The survey took place from 2010-2011 and asked people questions about how they felt, in regards to being worried, nervous, and anxious, and how often they experienced those particular emotions. The study found that depending on the participant's age group, the percentages of men and women feeling worried changed a lot.

For women from the ages of 18 to 64, 23 percent of them felt anxious or nervous either daily or weekly. For the age group from 18 to 44 in men, only 17 percent reported to have these emotions. That percentage rose slightly to 18 percent for the age group from 45 to 64. For the age group of over 75, only 16 percent of women and 11 percent of men experienced these feelings daily or weekly. Based on these statistics, one can infer that women tend to worry more regardless of age. However, the difference is not by a lot.

Furthermore, the survey relied heavily on people's self-analyses of their emotions, which is hard to measure. Therefore, although women tend to say that they worry more so than men, it might not actually be the case. This study can be helpful in informing people about the numbers behind the feelings anxiety and nervousness. Since worrying has often been linked to increase stress, which contributes to a lot of other physical and mental health complications, these statistics might influence people to attempt to reduce their worrying through activities meant for alleviating stress.  In addition, future surveys and research can observe whether these trends remain constant, increase or decrease over the next few years for both genders, or increase and decrease only in one gender.

The study is published if the CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. 

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