More than 1.1 million people, or 22 per cent of the population, reported having experienced at least one long-lasting condition or difficulty with their health in the census, according to the Central Statistics Office (CSO).
A census profile on disability, health and carers, published by the CSO on Thursday, showed that Wexford, at 24 per cent, was the county where the highest proportion of people reported having a long lasting health problem or difficulty.
In Fingal, 19 per cent of the population had a long-lasting condition or difficulty, the lowest proportion in the country.
Overall, more females (578,350) than males (531,207) experienced a long-lasting condition or difficulty, the CSO found.
The percentage of people reporting their general health status as very good decreased from 59 per cent in Census 2016 to 53 per cent in Census 2022, while the percentage of those reporting their general health status as good increased to 30 per cent last year from 28 per cent in 2016.
The percentage of people experiencing these conditions or difficulties was lower among young children (0 to 4 years) at 4 per cent, and young adults (15 to 19 years) at 17 per cent. From age 50 onwards, this rate began to rise, and increased more rapidly from age 75.
More than 346,000 people, or 34 per cent of the population, aged 15 and over who experienced a long-lasting condition or difficulty were still working.
In towns with a population of more than 1,500 people, the highest rate (91 per cent) of people who reported good or very good health was in Watergrasshill in Cork.
Among professional workers, 72 per cent reported very good health compared with 41 per cent of “unskilled” workers, the CSO found.
Almost 450,000 people, or 9 per cent of the population, smoked daily while just over 226,400 people (4 per cent) smoked occasionally.
In its section on carers, the CSO publication found that there were almost 300,000 people providing regular unpaid care, 6 per cent of the population.
The number of people providing regular unpaid care increased by 53 per cent, up from 195,263 in 2016 to 299,128 in 2022.
A greater proportion of unpaid care was provided by females (61 per cent) compared with males (39 per cent).