Social isolation

The intensity of the medical profession has the potential, if so allowed, to leave a doctor feeling drained – too tired to address personal issues, too drained to seek out fun engagements, too consumed by work to be attentive to most anything that isn’t a part of the job description. The tired doctor may have such serious thoughts on her mind as the life and death of a patient and may find it hard to give lesser issues her attention.

If left unchecked, the result over the long run is compounding damage to personal relationships, avoidance of interpersonal stresses, and increasing isolation – a major contributor to physician burnout.

Positive non-professional interactions are vital to the prevention of isolation and physician burnout. A doctor may be able to cure the ills of her patients, however she needs personal interaction, appreciation and support, whether from family, friends, peers, leaders and/or organizations, to ensure her own emotional health and the longevity of her career.

> Next: Physician burnout risk No.10: Ask for help

> Back: At risk of burnout? No. 8: Feelings of responsibility

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