There is no denying the fact that nursing is a highly rewarding career. However, nurse burnout is quite common regardless of your field. One of the leading causes of nurse burnout is prolonged and frequent shifts, understaffing, and high workload. This gets even tougher if you are required to be on your feet most of the time. Older nurses may have gotten used to but new nurses find this almost impossible to bear. However, as much as this kind of burnout is a nuisance, there are ways to prevent it.
What is Burnout?
This is a psychological occurrence that’s common in nurses. Usually, the symptoms of burnout are characterized by reduced mental, physical and emotional energy as a result of occupational stress. Nurses who experience burnout have a reduced sense of efficacy
How to Prevent Nurse Burnout
- Proper Work Distribution. If any particular group of nurses is made to work more than others, burnout is inevitable. Not only does the proper distribution of tasks make work easier, but it also ensures that all nurses work efficiently without suffering from burnout.
- Incorporation of Technology. Health facilities that incorporate technology to reduce manual labor have some of the most efficient nurses. The fewer tasks you manually perform, the fewer the chances of burnout.
- Rewards System. One of the most assured ways of ensuring that nurses remain motivated to work harder and better is through rewards. This can be in the form of finances, promotions, recognition.
- Proper Treatment. Feeling underlooked and underappreciated can greatly lower a person’s motivation which eventually leads to burnout. It is advisable that new nurses are guided on how to fit in their new work environments instead of being made to feel unwelcome.
- Upholding Values. Health facilities are one of the many institutions whereby diversity in cultures, religion, and beliefs is encountered. Nurses who work in facilities that require them to compromise on their values will eventually experience burnout. As much as patients’ values are upheld, those of nurses should be considered too.
Symptoms of Burnout
It is important for both nurses and health facilities to look out for symptoms in their staff. This is because burnout not only affects the nurses, its effects directly impact the facilities as well. These symptoms include; reduced physical and mental energy/drive, fatigue, insomnia, headache, and even depression. When nurses experience these symptoms, the quality of their work is interfered with as well as the productivity of the institutions.
How to Prevent a Nurses’ Burnout
There are several ways in which you, as a nursing professional, can prevent or alleviate burnout.
- Exercise. The importance of a healthy active lifestyle cannot be emphasized enough. Exercises will keep your body lean and fit as well as keep your mind fresh. When you exercise on a daily basis, you will notice that you are able to glide through your tasks at ease.
- Healthy Diet. A proper diet will see to it that your body is able to fight off diseases and release the necessary hormones that will combat stress.
- Proper Sleeping Habits. No matter how much you may be struggling to sleep, it is highly advisable that you form and stick to a routine. Eventually, your body will adapt to it hence preventing insomnia
- Seek Help. Although the above tips will help prevent or combat burnout, it is highly advisable that you seek medical help whenever you need it.
Nurse burnout is more common than you could imagine. If you are currently experiencing it, be encouraged that it is a common phrase that nurses experience and come out of successfully. However, if the symptoms are heavy for you, do not hesitate to seek medical help.