Working for more than nine hours a day could put women at greater risk of depression but not men, a study finds.
Women who worked long overtime, more than 55 hours per week, had 7.3 percent more depressive symptoms than women who worked 35 to 40 hours per week.
However, the same was not the case in men, the study concluded.
"While we can not pinpoint the exact causes, we know that many women face the additional burden of doing a larger share of domestic work than men, leading to extensive work hours, additional time pressures, and responsibilities overwhelming. " said lead researcher Gill Weston, a postdoctoral fellow at University College London.
"In addition, women who work on most weekends tend to focus on low-paying services jobs that are linked to higher levels of depression," Weston said.
For the study, published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, the team included 11,215 working men and 12,188 working women.
The study also showed that work at weekends was linked to a greater risk of depression among men (3.4%) and women (4.6%).
Two-thirds of men worked on weekends compared to half of women. Those who worked all or most of the weekends were more likely to be in low-skilled jobs and were less satisfied with their job and salary than those who worked only on weekdays or on weekends.
"We hope our findings will encourage employers and policymakers to think about how to reduce burdens and increase support for women who work long or irregular – without restricting their ability to work when they wish," Weston said.
"Nice work practices can bring benefits to both workers and employers of both sexes," she said.