Doctors and nurses are no different from any other people throughout the world, and they too can get affected by an addiction. Doctors and nurses are also prone to addiction and if not handled with care in this case, it can lead to more problems in their work. Among the many professionals, the medical field is one that comprises of people that are highly addicted. There could be several reasons why professionals within the medical fraternity are turning to drugs or alcohol but the reasons are no different from many other working professionals who are facing an addiction. The reasons which have been provided for the addiction among medical professionals are various. Some are looking forward to remaining alert throughout the day or the night according to their work schedule while others could be looking for an escape route from the emotional pain after a day of making hard decisions with drastic outcomes.
Data suggest no fewer than 100,000 health care professionals abuse drugs, the most common being narcotics like Fentanyl and Oxycodone.
Medical personnel can easily reach most addictive substances, this is what makes them different from other workers, and satisfying this addiction or forming one is very possible for them due to the easy access.
While addiction rate in medical professionals is high, the encouraging news is that this group also has a high recovery rate following treatment.
Addiction Signs In Medical Staff
Being highly functional addicts makes it tricky to identify abuse among doctors and nurses. The chances of these professionals maintaining their career, home life along with their substance abuse over a period of time without being noticed by the others remains higher.
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Common signs of addictions in doctors and nurses include:
Constantly moving from one job to the other.
Preference of night shifts where supervision and access to drugs are favourable to them.
Falling asleep on the job or during the shift.
Unusual frequency to volunteer of drug administration to patients.
Desperate to work only in night shifts or put in extra hours.
They often do the disappearing act either absence from work or during work.
Unusual use of breath freshener.
Suffer from terrible family relations and money problems.
Glassy eyes with small pupils.
Very close to the colleagues that are in the drug department.
Always making mistakes, or experiencing improper documentation.
Reasons For Medical Professionals Becoming Addicted To Alcohol And Drugs
One can come across a number of unique aspects within the profession of a doctor or a nurse which can make them more likely than other occupations to fall prey to a substance addiction. One common reason that has been noticed among medical professionals is the temptation to use substance such as oxycodone and fentanyl because of the easy access they have to these powerful substances. As they are professionals who also extensively knowledgeable about the effects, these substances can have on an individual, and this could possibly provide them the motivation needed to attempt and mimic the sensations with themselves with the sole intention to produce a high or euphoria.
Doctors are expected to make choices of victimized patients in order to facilitate their recovery, coupled with their unplanned extended work period. Their emotions and psychological state are affected after regretting an action or making wrong decisions, thereby prompting addiction.
How Drug Abuse Affects Work
Given the nature of their work, doctors and nurses who are addicted are more likely to cause harm that in other professions. Their lack of focus or instability when it comes to priority greatly impacts their performance.
The patients that are being attended to by these medical practitioners have their lives at risks. Acknowledgment or acceptance of their situation is usually the most tricky part of treating the addiction. Tackling the problem sooner than later can prevent accidents and mistakes at work.
The Statistics Of Addiction In The Healthcare World
Holding a license of a medical profession, certainly does not guarantee you a protection against abuse. Fortunately several treatment programs have been designed specifically to cater to the needs of medical professionals and to offer them a fresh, and healthy starts to their careers.
Medical practitioners are highly assisted by lots of states which provide schemes to assist doctors and ensuring that they don't lose their licensing certificates. The doctors will be trained on how they can overcome the desire of using the drugs again when they are back to their workplaces.
Their treatment and recovery process usually entails many things such as:
How they can get back to work effectively and keep their respect as doctors.
The transition from drug abuse back to the medical work.
How to handle issues related with licensing and discipline.
How to overcome the urge to use the drugs again after recovery.
Importance of taking part in monitoring programs.
The establishment of continued aftercare.
Doctors and nurses undergoing treatment for their addiction should feel positive because medical professionals are more likely to stay sober after treatment than others. The level of expertise and experience of therapy personnel are also among the contributing factors in the high recovery rate of doctors and nurses undergoing treatment. They provide a more personalized and well-targeted care to address the very reason of the abuse thereby effectively guiding the patient.