I took a " mental health day" today


I'm a new grad LPN that have been working in a hell hole for the last 4 months or so. Lately, I've been stressed to the point that I've been having major headaches and elevated BP. I have yet to call out for anything until today.

I woke up with a sore throat ( nothing major), and probably could have made it to work based on how I was physically feeling. However, mentally I just couldn't pull myself together to make it to work and function. :crying2:I decided to call in sick and take care of my mental health. Don't worry, there was someone who filled in for me today without leaving the facility short of a nurse or in a panic.

I've been depressed and stressed due to my job for the whole 4 months and haven't ever called out and don't plan on doing this in the future. But today I just needed a break and a " mental health day"

What did I do today? I went grocery shopping ( which I always never have the energy to do on work days), slept in until 8am, cuddled with hubby for a little while, went on AN, improved my resume, and LOOKED For a new job. Most of all I relaxed and am now ready to face the challenge tomorrow brings.

Do any other nurses ever take a " mental health day" ? :nurse:

Specializes in Medical Surgical. Has 21 years experience.

I think that if you dont you will quickly get burnt out. You are better for your patients with a refreshed spirit! I am going to remember to take me 2 mental health days a year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:bow:

Specializes in LTC. Has 6 years experience.
I think that if you dont you will quickly get burnt out. You are better for your patients with a refreshed spirit! I am going to remember to take me 2 mental health days a year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:bow:

Good for you ! I may just do the same. Two a year sounds great ! In fact I may write the president and recommend it as national personal holiday for all nurses to be allowed 2 mental health days a year. ( Just kidding, I'm sure he has other more important things on his mind nowadays) It was nice to dream of that though. :rolleyes:

Specializes in Med/Surg, LTAC, Critical Care.

Work as a nurse can really burn you out.... Some people, who are so used to taking care of others, forget to take care of themselves.... It's amazing the rejuvenating feeling one can get from plowing your' 4-wheeler right though that muddy slough, spraying a rooster tail of mud on your buddies behind you, or setting the hook on a nice 6lb bass (or whatever else anyone else does for fun)

Seriously though, burn out---tired body---tired mind---slower than normal responsiveness---less than clear thinking---danger to patients and self.....

Note: I don't usually call in sick except when I really am physically ill..... and I only take a mental health day when I'm absolutely sure my unit won't be too bad off without me, which doesn't happen very much.... I have to schedule a weekend off 6 months in advance. I scheduled the opening weekend of hunting season off 9 months in advance and still almost didn't get it.


23 Posts

Lol..that's so funny because today is the very first day I to a mental health day..I told my supervisor yesterday that I needed a mental health day.My supervisor is great she just told me that's fine and found my coverage.I slept all day today.I'm just getting up actually.


83 Posts

Specializes in geriatrics/long term care. Has 15 years experience.

I have been a nurse for approx 15 years(more if you count CNA experience). I spent 10 years as an LPN and the last 5 as an RN. I have found mental health days to be absolutely essential to maintaining my longevity as a nurse. We do not always have the option of taking time off because of the needs of our patients( We get vacation and personal time off, but have you tried using it in a staffing crunch)? I have found, personally, that i have a certain level of stress, after which, i have to find some "me" time. I can make it about a week after that point, then it begins to affect my spirit, outlook, how i feel, and thus what i am able to bring to my patients.

I average 3 mental health days a year. The time is well used and helps me bring a more positive attitude to the table. Whenever possible, i trade shifts and cover, delegate responsibility, etc.... to prevent inconvenience to my care team.

Do not be ashamed to take time off. The people that should be ashamed are those that dont, and bring a nasty, sour attitude to the workplace as a result. The trick is to take your time off as needed: schedule it when possible...cover it (or delegate responsibility to others) when you cant:nurse:


174 Posts

Specializes in L&D, PP, Nursery. Has 12 years experience.

Last week I called off for the first time in 13 years. I wasn't sick. It was a "mental health" day!

Specializes in Neuroscience/Neuro-surgery/Med-Surgical/.

Yep, i just took a 'mental health day' last night....and don't feel a bit of guilt about it.

As mentioned by a previous poster, I too know my level of stress, and when I owe myself a break from the bull **** of the work environment.

Next month Im down to working 2 nites per week......should cut down on my stress level, and need to call off.