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Prioritizing nurses’ mental health and self-care

Prioritizing nurses’ mental health and self-care

Why are nurses prone to depression and anxiety?

Many factors that affect an individual's mental health, including significant stress, irregular sleep schedules and lack of support, are normal parts of the nursing profession. In fact, nurses often face higher levels of mental health challenges than individuals working outside of the healthcare industry. Some specific causes of anxiety and depression in nurses are discussed below.

1. High pressure situations

The situations nurses face when they come to work are different every day. Nurses are thrust into new situations every day, use their knowledge to quickly recall information, and often make life-or-death decisions.doctor of nursing practice programme in asia It’s a never-ending process of learning from experience. Anxiety caused by these high-stress situations can be more pronounced for people entering new nursing jobs, especially when they are exacerbated by inadequate peer or mentor support.

2. Fear of causing harm to patients

Even experienced nurses can find themselves feeling overwhelmed by their work. Almost all healthcare professionals, regardless of their level, fear making medical errors.

3. Find work/life balance

Difficulty clearly distinguishing between work and home is an important cause of anxiety and depression among nurses.masters in nursing programme in asia Because the nature of nurses' schedules often prevents them from doing much more than eating and sleeping on their days off, focusing on themselves and their families can be a challenge.

4. The impact of the pandemic on nurses

The American Psychiatric Association discussed the potential for post-traumatic stress in the wake of the pandemic, recognizing that stigma surrounding mental health prevents health care workers from seeking treatment. Healthcare workers, especially those directly caring for COVID-19 patients, are at high risk for developing traumatic stress disorder due to unprecedented levels of burnout, moral injury, and compassion fatigue. These findings demonstrate the importance of prioritizing nurse self-care.

Nurse's self-care

Self-care is crucial when dealing with anxiety, depression, and even everyday stress.

It is critical for nurses to have a reliable support system when practicing self-care. It's important that you feel empowered to discuss stress and mental health issues in a safe space, realizing you're not alone.

Nurses have experienced unusually high levels of stress during the pandemic and this should not be ignored or forgotten. Always remember to prioritize your own mental health and self-care, just as you would advise your patients.