Intended for healthcare professionals


Happiness is a U shaped curve, highest in the teens and 70s, shows survey

BMJ 2012; 344 doi: (Published 28 February 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e1534
  1. Nigel Hawkes
  1. 1London

Northern Ireland is the happiest part of the United Kingdom, concludes the Office for National Statistics (ONS) after questioning 80 000 adults between April and September last year. People from Northern Ireland also scored highest when asked how satisfied they were with their lives and in assessing whether their lives were worthwhile.

But the differences were small, Northern Ireland scoring 7.5 out of a possible 10 when asked, “Overall, how happy did you feel yesterday?” against the 7.3 scored by Scotland and by England and Wales. People in London and the West Midlands scored lowest for life satisfaction (7.2), and Londoners were also the most anxious, scoring 3.5 out of 10 against a UK average of 3.2.

The results come from a national programme of …

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