Sample Nursing Paper on Stress and Burnout in Nursing

Sample Nursing Paper on Stress and Burnout in Nursing

Stress and Burnout in Nursing

            A nurse prioritizes enhancing patients’ physical and mental health; this commitment to providing care has beneficial and adverse effects on their health. According to Carte & Williams (2017), health institutions and nurses often complain about personnel shortages, onerous government restrictions, and new, complicated tasks and functions. The highlighted difficulties cause role strain, burnout, and poor patient care. The underlying concerns also lead to moral and legal dilemmas that obstruct the provision of complete medical treatment. In other words, burnout and role stress are bad for nurses, particularly their achievements, since they make them less capable of fulfilling their jobs and less aware of their tasks. Key parties must invest in designing and executing effective strategies for reducing nurse burnout to solve these problems, including recruiting additional nurses and funding nurse education.

Despite empirical research showing stress’s crucial function in raising performance levels and life quality, extreme role strain is detrimental. Role stress is a vital part of a nurse’s daily life, but it loses its positive effects when it becomes overpowering. Excessive role stress affects nurses negatively, including preventing them from performing a wide range of activities, making them ineffective, insufficient, and fruitless (Akkoç, Okun & Türe, 2020). A nurse under extreme pressure will become indifferent, lose focus, make atypical mistakes and bad judgments, and experience anxiety and motivational decline.

Stress among nurses is intrinsically connected to lesser care for patients and colleagues. According to Liu et al. (2021), demotivated nurses often exhibit diminished performance capability and elevated absenteeism. The researchers also found that nurses who are under stress eat unhealthily and abuse drugs. Role stress changes nurse behaviors, exacerbating poor health conditions. Besides, it causes nurses to be dissatisfied with their jobs and contributes to the higher turnover rate seen in many hospitals and related health institutions globally.

Recent research confirmed earlier studies that found a correlation between extreme role stress and unfavorable patient outcomes. For example, Liu et al. (2021) discovered in their studies that nursing stress is related to high infection rates, substandard patient care, more medical mistakes, higher mortality and morbidity rates, and high levels of patient discontent. Stressed nurses are more prone to commit unusual mistakes since they care less for patient preferences and service needs.

Competence and damage avoidance are ethical obligations. Stress and burnout typically impair nurses, leading to poor patient care; nurses who experience more ethical challenges report increased stress and fatigue. When nurses settle an ethical problem, they should acknowledge the pressure that caused it. They can endure the ethical dilemma if they overlook stress and burnout (Imboden, 2020). Nurses experiencing ethical difficulties can seek guidance. Consultation can improve their judgment call and enable them to contemplate stress or emotional reaction. Besides, they can use career-sustaining habits or coping techniques to handle ethical difficulties. Career-sustaining habits are techniques employed to sustain a healthy functioning and a good attitude about their profession.

Nursing stakeholders have proposed numerous stress management techniques. Liu et al. (2021) mention that nurses must consider discussing their professional difficulties. These researchers claim that difficult circumstances and related events encountered at work are repetitive. The nurse prepares for the following shift and often lacks adequate rest; thus, they will likely become stressed. The researchers encourage the nurse to discuss the issue with friends, family, and coworkers, particularly after working a long, demanding, and strenuous shift.

The ultimate way for each nurse to understand their stresses and employ the proper techniques to handle them is through discussion. For instance, most nurses often have difficult days due to insufficient staffing. Nonetheless, they avoid addressing the problem by pointing the finger at the added effort. Fortunately, they are in an excellent position to learn that the facility’s administration has adopted a lax attitude to personnel and patient safety as they discuss the issue (Liu et al., 2021). The manager should be reminded to appreciate and implement excellent communication in the workplace in parallel to fixing the situation when nurses have identified the real problem.

Developing a hobby can also significantly lessen role-related stress. Nurses become satisfied and productive when they are participating in a hobby. More importantly, hobbies teach nurses time management and commitment since nurses must spend a significant amount of time with patients. Nurses can crochet, read pertinent literature, or concentrate on their preferred artistic endeavors to relax their minds. Hobbies are essential for directing their focus away from stressful tasks and into enjoyable pursuits that significantly reduce role stress.

Additionally, nurses who feel powerless due to extreme stress must seek professional assistance. For instance, a nurse might not personally recognize and manage various stressors. In this situation, the nurse frequently struggles to maintain positive interpersonal interactions, which results in poor performance and patient outcomes (Akkoç, Okun & Türe, 2020). Therefore, nurses must acknowledge that role stress is one of the pervasive issues in their field by working with professional counselors. Stressed-out nurses should know that getting professional assistance benefits their well-being and their patients’.

The literature identifies several sociodemographic, vocational, psychographic, and occupational characteristics that cause nurse burnout. Research has also shown a link between work stress and nurse burnout, which harms patient care. According to Akkoç, Okun & Türe (2020), lengthy hours and a severe workload are two factors that contribute to nursing burnout, as does job uncertainty. Most nurses have and do attribute their weariness to their lengthy workdays. A considerable number of nurses work over 12 hours a day. Some struggle to leave their places of employment on time, while others are required to work extra hours by management due to a personnel shortage. Nurses get exhausted due to their excessive workload and lack of rest. As a result, they are more likely to make medical mistakes, endangering patient safety and compromising the accomplishment of intended health results. In a nutshell, working long hours causes tiredness and separation from the job.

Nursing duties today have risen, given significant technological developments in the previous decade. According to Carte & Williams (2017), nursing’s complex nature has caused role ambiguity, as hospitals have failed to define distinct responsibilities for their personnel. The further consequence is a misunderstanding since nurses blend jobs, making their work challenging, diverse, and demanding. When managers fail to clarify responsibilities, the workplace becomes hectic, resulting in nursing burnout.

Overworked nurses can avoid burnout by staying active and requesting extra staff. Carte & Williams (2017) state that physical activities after work reduce stress and fatigue. Exercise reduces cortisol and adrenaline and boosts endorphins. Besides, physical exercise promotes energy, reducing fatigue. Heavy workloads need additional nursing assistants and nurses. Nurses, management, and relevant advocacy groups should define, update, and assign duties for various kinds of nurses to reduce job ambiguity. As a result, nurses can increase their performance in their specializations, reducing burnout since they like their work.

A stressful situation I faced at the job was dealing with a demanding Chinese patient who continually complained of aches. I investigated all routes to meet her needs, but she was antagonistic and uncooperative. I applied my nursing knowledge, expertise, and talents, to relieve her pain, all of which yielded little to no favorable consequences. I felt stressed attending to the sick that I even hated my profession.

I sought aid from seasoned nurses and the attending doctor to solve the situation. I pondered and realized the issue required care and comfort. I sought a doctor to aid in pain management to ensure correct judgments and actions. The patient recovered in a week. I recognized the patient only required a gentle approach and the correct caretaker for her physical and mental concerns. The episode made me rethink my treatment approach, particularly for burnout-prone individuals.





Akkoç, İ., Okun, O., & Türe, A. (2020). The effect of role‐related stressors on nurses’ burnout syndrome: The mediating role of work‐related stress. Perspectives in Psychiatric Care, 57(2), 583-596.

Carte, N. S., & Williams, C. (2017). Role strain among male RNs in the critical care setting: Perceptions of an unfriendly workplace. Intensive and Critical Care Nursing, 43, 81-86.

Imboden, R. (2020). Exploring the relationship between ethics stress and burnout. Journal of

 Social Work Values & Ethics17(1), 16-24.

Liu, Y., Aungsuroch, Y., Gunawan, J., & Zeng, D. (2021). Job stress, psychological capital,

perceived social support, and occupational burnout among hospital nurses. Journal of

 Nursing Scholarship, 53(4), 511-518.