Nursing is one of the most demanding and challenging professions, but it is also very rewarding. To meet the demands of this profession, nurses and nursing students need to be in top form physically and mentally.
The demands of the nursing profession are high and can lead to burnout. Nurses are expected to be compassionate, patient, and caring – all while working long hours on their feet. It’s no wonder that so many nurses experience burnout occasionally.
What can be done to prevent burnout?
The good news is that there are steps you can take to prevent burnout. One of the best things nurses can do is to make exercise a regular part of their lives. Exercise has been shown to increase energy levels, reduce stress, and improve mental and physical health. Exercise releases endorphins, which have mood-boosting and stress-reducing effects. It can also help to improve brain power, cognitive function, and sleep quality, which is essential for preventing burnout as you advance your career and have more healthcare engagements.
If you’re looking to further advance your nursing career and have more roles to work in, the UIndy DNP-AGNP program could be the right choice for you. The program is designed for working nurses who want to pursue a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree and prepares nurse practitioners for advanced practice roles in primary care. It includes coursework in evidence-based practice, advanced pharmacology, and health policy. The program also includes a clinical practicum, which gives students the opportunity to apply what they have learned in the classroom to real-world settings.
Why is exercise important in nursing?
Engaging in regular physical activity can help you meet the physical demands of nursing. Nurses need to be physically fit to provide treatment, care for patients, and be able to lift and move patients. Additionally, it can enhance a nurse’s mental health and help prevent burnout.
As a nurse or nursing student, exercise provides the following benefits:
Exercise improves sleep quality. This is essential for preventing burnout as nurses are often sleep-deprived because of the demands of their job. Being in this state can increase stress levels and make it difficult to perform at work. Getting a good night’s sleep is crucial for maintaining your physical and mental health and preventing burnout, especially when coupled with exercise.
Exercise enhances your energy levels. Generally, the more active you are, the better you’ll feel. It promotes energy by increasing the levels of endorphins in your brain, which can help to improve mental alertness and reduce feelings of stress. The more active you are, the lower your chances of experiencing energy crashes, which is essential for preventing burnout.
Exercise helps you lose weight and maintain a healthy weight. Nurses often gain weight because of the sedentary nature of their job and subsequent lack of exercise. Those who are overweight or obese may be more prone to chronic health conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease and stroke – all of which can cause burnout due to the stress associated with these conditions. Preventing burnout can be as simple as engaging in regular exercise and eating a healthy diet.
Exercise reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol. This is particularly important for nurses who have high levels of stress due to their job. Regular exercise may help to reduce the rate of burnout among nurses by helping manage their stress and improve their mental health. Exercise also reduces feelings of depression and anxiety, which can also cause burnout among nurses.
Exercise can improve your immune system and enhance your body’s ability to fight off germs and infections. This is particularly helpful for nurses who work in environments where they are exposed to a lot of germs. Nurses need to be protected against gastroenteritis, pneumonia and other diseases that can be contracted from patients. So, keeping their immune systems functioning optimally can make a big difference.
You will be a positive role model
Caregivers are often viewed as role models. When people see that you have a healthy lifestyle, they are more likely to pay attention to the advice you give them, including the advice you provide at work. Your example as a positive role model can inspire others to adopt your habits, which will improve their health and help prevent burnout among your fellow workers.
Exercise promotes good mental health. It can help to reduce feelings of depression and anxiety, which are common in nursing professionals due to the stressful nature of the job. By being active, you’ll be able to better manage your stress and be more effective at work and in your personal life.
Physical exercise will positively impact your nursing career
Engaging in exercise plays a key role in preventing burnout in nursing and is important for nurses of all experience levels, from new graduates to seasoned veterans. Exercise can positively impact your mood and help you manage stress. It can also boost your immune system and reduce your risk of contracting a number of serious health conditions.
Nurses who are physically fit are better able to diagnose and treat patients effectively. This means that you’ll be able to reduce the risk of serious or life-threatening conditions in your patients, including infections, surgical errors, and other potential medical errors. As you perform better at work and school, you will be more motivated to advance your career further, get promotions, and stay in your role longer.