Americans remain stressed over debt

Debt is weighing on the minds of many Americans and making them stressed.

A poll conducted by the Associated Press and GfK found that 46 percent of respondents reported feeling a “great deal” or “quite a bit” of stress because of their debt.

Credit cards, mortgages and medical bills are all mounting and overwhelming consumers even though economically, things are turning around.

Stress levels over debt remain the same as last year when the future looked more bleak, found the AP-GfK poll. The amount of debt households have is still higher than it was in the past.

“People on average carry around $44,000 in debt – mortgages, credit cards, auto loans and other consumer debt,” reports the AP. “That’s a far bigger load than in the early 1980s, when unemployment topped 10 percent. In 1982, per capita debt totaled about $14,000 in today’s dollars.”

Debt-related stress doesn’t hit everyone the same. Men, people over 60 and households with incomes in excess of $100,000 reported having low levels of stress, says the AP.

Chronic stress can have a negative impact on one’s health. MSNBC reports that increased blood pressure and heart rate problems can be symptoms of the condition.