The Most Stressful Part of Being a Doctor

Working to save lives or providing safety and security in whatever way can be very tedious. Well, the most stressful part of being a doctor or anything like it is that you will have a larger crowd which may present themselves in forms of demands, piling like unending files on your desk. That only is stress on its own.

It is the truth that some of the things that doctors face are countlessly not what anyone may be bold enough to face if that occupation happens to be their field. Stress can be defined as a state of worry or mental tension caused by a difficult situation.

Stress is a natural human response that prompts us to address challenges and threats in our lives. Everyone experiences stress to some degree. This stress right here is the daily conditions which doctors face almost helplessly and it is that which they cannot voice out ranting about.

Common Causes of Stress

  • Feel under lots of pressure.
  • Face big changes in your life.
  • Are worried about something.
  • Don’t have much or any control over the outcome of a situation.
  • Have responsibilities that you find overwhelming.
  • Don’t have enough work, activities or change in your life.
  • Experience discrimination, hate or abuse.

Identifying the causes of stress can be a step towards acquiring stress management skills. So, what then does this means? Stress management is a wide spectrum of techniques and psychotherapies aimed at controlling a person’s level of stress, especially chronic stress, usually for the purpose of improving everyday functioning.

Stressors Against the Job of Doctor

Having said so little about the position of a doctor and the negative relationship that situation share with stress, as a common phenomenon, let us start to dissect some of the most stressful part of being a doctor:

Social expectation- The doctor is still perceived as a very comfortable person in our society and expectations are usually high financially and otherwise. Failure or inability to ‘meet up’ may constitute a significant stress factor in some physicians.

Training-at both the undergraduate and postgraduate levels are long and tedious. Getting into the few medical schools is like passing through the proverbial eye of the needle, yet the remunerations and the social acceptability and recognition are not commensurate.

Hostile job environment, administrative ineptitude and bureaucratic bottlenecks can make the job situation very frustrating. Inadequate infrastructure, unavailable and obsolete equipment make the long years and fortune spent in training at home and abroad a waste.

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Unsecured future, delays in promotion and inappropriate capacity utilization are some of the causes of unfulfillment and stress in the job place. Long working hours was specifically identified in the BMA report. This could be compounded in our environment by denied and ‘monetized’ holidays, sometimes because of manpower shortages and/or poverty.

Inadequate personal training and retraining, and lack of continuous education can lead to loss of self esteem and frustration in our profession where changes and development go on at jet speed. Fear of mistakes and litigations are becoming increasingly important.

Early individual behavioral reactions may include onset or increased smoking and alcohol use. Individuals may tend to keep late nights in clinics/offices without accompanying increased productivity. While others might become irritable, some will tend to intense seclusion and individualism.

There may be intense religiosity without adequate spiritual content. There may be a tendency to unstable jobs. Anti- social behavior like extra-marital affair is not uncommon. In developed economies, the risk of suicide is real.

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