I'm with BTDT and several others on this one. What a sad state of affairs it is when so many caregivers have to resort to anxiolytics and other powerful psychoactive medications just to cope with the stress of our profession.
I've often wondered how I've managed to avoid relapsing into active ETOH abuse again with some of the jobs I've had over the years; there have been countless times when I felt so hopeless and negative after a bad day (or series of them) that it took everything I had not to pick up that first drink.
As it is, I've been on various antidepressants, as well as a small dose of lorazepam at HS for eons, only to learn recently that I actually have bipolar d/o and have been on the wrong stuff all these years! So now I'm analyzing how much the stress level has contributed to the progression of the illness......it used to be that my 'manic' episodes were basically just times when I had extra energy and was unusually bright and cheery. I enjoyed
those; heck, they were not only productive, but fun!
Then a couple of months ago, I had a 'mixed' episode in which I was irritable, agitated, couldn't sleep, couldn't eat, and didn't care. Not good.
Thankfully, my PCP knows what I'm up against and forced me to get some help for all this, and I'm doing better now; but sometimes I get to thinking: if I'm having this much trouble staying on an even keel
now, what will it be like in another 10-15 years?
Even though I love my current job and can't imagine being anything other than a nurse, I know my mental and physical health have suffered as a result of my career choice. So has that of many, many other nurses I know. But......what can we do? :uhoh21: