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Why FIFO Workers are prone to Depression

By: Richard Boyd Copyright © 2021 December 27, 2019 no comments

Why FIFO Workers are prone to Depression

A WA study found that FIFO (fly in fly out) workers are prone to depression. Depression is significantly higher with FIFO workers due to a series of factors. There is research that refutes the existence of FIFO depression; there have also been studies which reached the opposite conclusion.

However, let us focus on some of the reasons why FIFO workers are prone to depression:


Loneliness is one of the reasons why FIFO workers feel depressed. This is due to being away from the family and being in a different environment. Although, families and friends at home can easily be contacted due to social media platforms, it is still an issue. There are still FIFO workers who get lonely because they couldn’t see their loved ones and family members face-to-face. This can lead to missing important family events such as birthdays, Christmas and other special occasions. As the days go by, FIFO workers get lonelier which can lead to depression and other mental illnesses.

Financial pressure

FIFO workers accept these jobs due to higher pay. There is often financial pressure felt due to family and other obligations. There are also instances where you compare yourself with others’ financial status and the assets that they have acquired which can lead to higher financial pressure. FIFO workers also feel financial pressure due to higher demands. They are under more pressure to earn to support their families at home. Considering all of these instances, we can now understand how financial pressure can lead to FIFO depression.


Stress is a normal reaction to situations. FIFO workers tend to work long hours in a harsh environment. The stress level is always high which can lead to depression if uncontrolled. The working environment is also a big factor why FIFO workers are prone to depression. They work in extreme weather conditions that lead to higher stress level and fatigue. Some FIFO workers have poor stress management strategies which can worsen the condition.


Fatigue is the body’s normal reaction to vigorous activities. These can become an issue if you continue to experience tiredness and forgetting to rest. Prolonged fatigue can weaken your physical body, and bring on depression and other mental conditions. These situations can affect your work productivity and may also lead to losing your job. FIFO workers are so focused on their tasks and  responsibilities that they forget to unwind and separate themselves from such an environment. Fatigue can cause depression which can negatively affect work productivity.

Sense of helplessness

The feeling of helplessness is a common challenge FIFO workers are battling every day. Being away from their families, friends and relatives can make them feel helpless and unimportant.

In some cases, the sense of helplessness leads to drinking and drug abuse. Drinking and drug abuse can lead to addiction which can result in other mental conditions. The sense of helplessness cannot only lead to depression but also suicidal thoughts. Also, with all of these recurring situations, FIFO workers are not only prone to depression but also other types of mental conditions.

You can find out more about Energetics Institutes Depression Counselling therapy, as our experienced team is always available to help you deal with your depression symptoms. If you are a FIFO worker who might be suffering from depression, get help now!

We provide FIFO Counselling to clients at our therapy practice in Perth and also offer a range of Online Counselling options.

Do not wait for your condition to get worse. Seek help for FIFO depressionReach out to Energetics Institute.

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