Seafarer Mental Health: Addressing Wellness in the Maritime Profession

Seafarer Mental Health

Posted on Nov 30, 2023 at 11:11 PM

The maritime industry puts high pressure on the workers, especially the seafarers' mental health and all the challenging conditions they may face.

Moreover, providing cited support for seafarers' mental health is crucial in guaranteeing vessel efficiency, productivity, and safety.

Learning about seafarers' mental health and spreading awareness is essential; continue reading with us to learn all the necessary information about seafarers' health and wellbeing.


The Basic Marine Impacts of Seafarer Mental Health:

The marine crew suffers from many impacts attached to the challenging circumstances in their careers. And these are the most basic and direct impacts:

  • Spending a long time in the water, sometimes for months, with all the instability in the weather and work circumstances.

  • Social isolation: although the seafarer will not be working alone on the vessel, not meeting anyone except the crew members will cause some kind of social isolation and depression among seafarers.

  • There is High work pressure because seafarers are always working when they are on vessels.


5 Steps to Support Seafarer Mental Health:

As a maritime leader, you should be the biggest supporter of your crew. Thus, you need to grow your skills, attend maritime certification courses, and follow these essential steps:

  1. Be a Positive Leader:

To protect seafarers' mental health, you must start by protecting your health and well-being. 

So, you can stay positive and support your crew members on all levels and in difficult maritime situations. Moreover, it helps them survive marine depression and anxiety.

  1. Talk about Mental Health in Public:

A seafarer may suffer from mental health issues in silence; however, talking publicly about it in regular meetings will encourage them to speak out and ask for help when they face any mental health problem.

  1. Share Respect among Seafarers:

Sharing respect will improve seafarers' mental health your company's work culture, and make seafarers feel safe on all levels.

On the other hand, respect will also improve productivity and engagement due to the growing feeling.

  1. Provide Mental Health Support:

Having a professional psychiatrist on board is a good choice, especially for large ships that work on long-distance voyages. 

The professional support will boost safety on the high seas. Furthermore, you can provide onshore mental support for your crew during breaks.

  1. Strike a Work-Life Balance:

This is a significant point when taking care of a seafarer's mental health, mainly because they are working and living on ships for months. You can do so by organising workflow and scheduling apparent work shifts.


Why Is It Important to Boost Seafarer Mental Health?

Mental health is an essential factor in any successful workplace, as providing this factor will reduce stress, depression, and anxiety.

However, these are the cited benefits of having a positive seafarer mental health situation:

Seafarer Mental Health

  • Stay focused and know how to act during different situations, including inner ship problems and international pandemics.

  • Improve and protect work stability with stable seafarer mental health, as they can function and work effectively.

  • Good seafarer mental health guarantees an increase in productivity and efficiency in all ongoing operations, and as a result, your revenue will increase.

  • When seafarers have stable mental health and well-being, you can build a positive work environment that fosters productivity, stability, and crew engagement.

  • As a result of protecting seafarers' mental health, you will also protect their physical health as well, as they are directly attached and impacted by each other.


Organisations Working to Improve Seafarer Mental Health:

Many organisations and initiatives are working effectively on the international level to support seafarer mental health, such as:


To boost productivity and efficiency, seafarers' mental health should be a priority for all maritime businesses.

To do so in the best way, you must invest in the best practices and training for your marine leaders and seafarers.