Burnout is a “workplace phenomenon” plaguing today’s professionals. Dentists, like other health professionals, are not immune to this potential danger. In fact, a 2016 study published in the Journal of International Society of Preventive and Community Dentistry showed that nearly half of today’s young dental professionals experience burnout.
As you know, dentistry can be a high-stress, high-risk career path. Here are tips to help you prevent burnout in your life as a dentist.
- Do not neglect your personal health.
Health professionals often provide their patients with top-tier advice and care while simultaneously neglecting their own health. Do not be one of these people. Instead, take care of yourself like you take care of your patients. Eat well, drink plenty of water, and get sufficient amounts of sleep each night. Don’t forget to make exercise a daily habit, even if it seems like a nuisance. Not only with this routine keep you healthy, but it will also help you to feel less stressed in your day-to-day life.
- Be your own advocate.
It’s natural for health professionals to be advocates. However, all too often, we forget that we need to advocate for ourselves. Only you can draw the line when it comes to taking on too much work. If you are a business owner, you can create boundaries around your practice’s hours and patient-load. Don’t feel guilty if you need to schedule less frequently during the most stressful times in your life. Recognizing your limits and becoming your own advocate in these areas with help ensure you avoid burnout.
- Remember why you started.
If you’re nearing burnout, you may start to lose enthusiasm for the profession you once loved. If this is the case for you, try to remember what drew you to dentistry in the first place. Make a list of aspects of your job that you still enjoy and that you are most grateful for. As simple as it sounds, if you continue to keep your eyes on the positive parts of your career, you are less likely to feel overwhelmed and stressed — and therefore, less likely to burn out.
Burnout is a massive problem in the healthcare sector, but it does not have to happen to you. Follow these tips, and you will be more likely to thrive in your career as a dental professional!