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Avoid, adapt, alter, accept: Stress management tools help farm families

barn promoting farmer stress

URBANA, Ill. – The only certainty during spring planting is uncertainty. Farmers face many challenges: too much rain, too little rain, long hours, crop diseases and pests, machinery breakdowns.

Josie Rudolphi, University of Illinois Extension specialist, says that most farm injuries occur during the spring and the fall when stress and fatigue increase risks for farmers. Stress and mental health conditions add to the risk factors for agricultural injury. Though faced with multiple challenges, farm operators are unlikely to seek help for mental health issues.

"Managing stress is an important component to injury prevention, health, and safety," says Rudolphi. The U of I assistant professor will discuss the signs and symptoms of stress and offer methods to cope with the season's stressors during a free webinar.

"By using the Four A Method of avoid, adapt, alter, and accept, farmers can successfully manage the stress of long hours and unpredictability this planting season," says Rudolphi.

The free online webinar begins at noon April 1. Register online. If you will need an accommodation in order to participate, please email Rudolphi. Early requests are strongly encouraged to allow sufficient time to meet your access needs.

SOURCEJosie Rudolphi, Illinois Extension, Farm Safety Specialist
WRITER: Judy Mae Bingman, Illinois Extension, Marketing and Communications Manager

ABOUT EXTENSION: Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities.