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Stress In Med School: How To Avoid Burning Out

July 01, 2019
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Medical programs can be very stressful. That’s not surprising since becoming a doctor is not an easy path, but too much stress can have psychological and physical effects on the students.  As a result, a significant number of medical students experience burnout. This is a major problem because it can have serious effects on students and may even cause them to drop out altogether.

How to Avoid Burning Out

Here are some ideas that you can use in order to avoid burning out while you are in medical school:

1. Take Your Time Off

Stress is going to be inevitable when you are in medical school.  There are just so many things that you have to learn within a short period of time. That can be a bit too much for some. The important thing is that you know how to deal with stress. The best that you can do is to take time off from all the studies on a regular basis and do something that is completely unrelated. Maybe you can go hiking or camping. Try playing sports. These unrelated activities can keep your stress level low.

2. Take Advantage of Your School’s Resources

Most school administrators are aware of the pressure that their students are facing. So, they provide resources that can help their students deal with stress. Gyms and other facilities help.  Schools can also provide students with activities like yoga and zumba classes which can help students stay fit and better able to deal with stress.

3. Get Enough Sleep

Another cause of stress when studying in medical school would be the lack of sleep. You might think that staying up all night studying is obligatory in medical school. That’s not actually true. If you manage your time wisely, you might be able to get enough sleep every night. Lack of sleep can have ill effects on your health, as well as lead to you being drained of energy which will lead to eventually being burned out. While getting the recommended eight hours of sleep every night may not be possible, you should get as much as you can.

4. Time Management

Stress and burnout in medical school can be attributed to the fact that students feel like they do not have enough time to do all the things required of them. In reality, the key to resolving this issue is careful planning and scheduling. This is easier said than done but there are plenty of time management tools that you can use to make things easier.

5. Connect with People

One of the more effective ways of avoiding burnout is to connect with others. Talk with people, with other students. It is particularly easy to do this while you are in college as there are plenty of clubs and social events that you can go to. Connecting and meeting other people can be a great way for you to distract yourself and reduce the stress which you might feel.  In some ways, stress is unavoidable when you are in medical school. But what you can avoid is a complete burnout.  Schools play an important role in ensuring that medical students do not become overwhelmed by their studies. For example, Saint James School of Medicine has numerous programs and facilities aimed at helping students to deal with stress and to keep their mental health on the right track. It helps a lot when your school recognizes the struggles you face as a medical student.
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