We all have tough days at work. Maybe the boss screamed at you because you failed to get a big project done by the deadline, or your pesky colleague is driving you crazy, and you are just about fed up enough to quit.
For nurses, however, that grinding stress is amplified exponentially. They must deal with physically aggressive patients, walking up and down long hospital corridors all day, lifting patients, pushing beds, working overtime and not being able to be with their own families as much as they would like. Worst of all is knowing that no matter what you do or how hard you try, some patients just will never get better.
What is nurse burnout?
After being compelled to handle all these things on a frequent basis, nurses can suffer from burnout. That condition is defined as “mental, physical and emotional exhaustion caused by sustained work-related stressors.”
What are some of the other reasons?
Many professions experience stress, deadlines, hectic, crammed schedules and mountainous workloads. Yet for nurses, there are extra factors:
- Poor teamwork and leadership: There is a lot of bureaucracy in hospitals
- Having too many patients to care for: Staff shortages are a huge issue
- Getting insufficient rest is a factor in burnout: Working shifts can make this worse
- Dealing with patients in serious, perhaps fatal conditions: This can be especially tough when children are involved
Nurse burnout can have far-reaching consequences. You may not be able to do your job as well or find yourself slipping into depression or experiencing other forms of illness. If so, you need to explore if workers’ compensation might be a possibility for you.