Nurses dedicate their lives to helping others! This can cause a number of different stress factors, both physically and emotionally. We all know that everyone gets stressed and has common everyday tension within their lives, but intense stress over a long period of time can affect someone differently than day-to-day factors. When a nurse is burned out, it can lead to dulled emotions and less empathy towards their patients and their overall career.

What Does Burnout Feel Like?

A burnout is characterized by emotional and physical exhaustion. The nurse may develop a sense of detachment from their work and their patients as a whole. It is common for healthcare professionals to feel like they are burned-out because there is time pressure, lack of control over certain work processes, role conflicts, and sometimes poor relationships between supervisors and nurses.  There are symptoms each nurse should know when it starts to feel like you’re about to burnout:

  • You’re always sick and tired. It is common to get the flu during flu season or be fatigued from the shift before; however, you should not always feel like this! Do you find yourself struggling to keep your eyes open? Is the hardest part of the day getting out of bed? A burnout can cause a number of physical symptoms such as; headaches, insomnia, stomach aches and upset, and weight loss and gain.
  • You always feel under-appreciated. It is also common for a nurse to feel under-appreciated, you saved a life today and no one hesitated or said, “good job.” It is okay to say no to more patients and extra assignments. You cannot do everything at once.
  • You dread going to work. Yes, no one wants to work the holidays. However, you should still want to go to work every other day you’re scheduled. If this is not the case, it may be time to sit down and figure out why not.
  • You are just going through the motions each day. Nothing really excites you anymore. You know patient in room 10 needs their medication at the same time everyday and the list goes on and on.
  • Your patients are suffering. This is the moment you need to take a break. You cannot let the stress of work affect how you treat and handle patients. You cannot take care of your patients correctly if you’re not taking care of yourself, bottom line! This affects the quality patient care in a hospital setting. Patient Quality Care is one of the most important aspects  that hospitals must follow. Check out the blog on, “The Importance of Quality Patient Care.”

How Does Burnout Happen?

A burnout can occur from a number of different internal reasons. These are some of the most common:

  • The extremely long and draining shifts.
  • Always putting others first.
  • All of the busy and high-stress situations and environments.
  • The notion of always dealing with patients at their worst and even on their deathbed.
  • A larger patient case load than normal.

This all can lead up to enormous emotional, mental, and physical stress. Furthermore, depending on the department, a nurse can be handling four to six patients on her own. If a C.N.A is working alongside the RN, s/he can have as many as seven to ten patients.  Research has shown for hospitals to improve their patient quality care they must improve on their nurses’ quality care.


A small way to help nurses who are stressed, pressed for time, and deal with more and more on their plates is Moduflex, LLC. Moduflex, LLC is a pre-engineered patent pending nurse server storage unit. It allows for nurses to save time doing daily tasks during their shift. This includes giving patients medicine, needing supplies, and being closer to the patient at all times.

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