Compassion Fatigue Essay

778 Words4 Pages
Health providers suffer from an emotional problem called compassion fatigue. Often times compassion fatigue occurs do to the situations encountered by health care professionals and the pain they feel for the patients they care for. One of the essential components of health care is providing care is compassion Compassion is one of the fundamental characteristics implemented into patient care by health care providers. Compassion signifies “a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering” (Compassion, n.d.). Nurses and other health care providers provide selfless service, tireless dedication, compassion, and often neglect their personal needs, which…show more content…
Emotional One of the major emotional disorders that occurs in health care providers who experience compassion fatigue is depression. Depression will lead to the individual experiencing increasing feelings of sadness and helplessness. Individuals may experience a loss of interest in previous hobbies, fear, guilt, and anxiety. The person may be describe as an emotional roller coaster who is sad, angry, and overly sensitive from one minute to the next. Often times the person is emotionally numb and depleted. Behavioral Conflicts between staff members, friends, family, and patients may arise in the person suffering from compassion fatigue. Difficulty sleeping and frequent nightmares occur, which leads to an increased amount of fatigue. The person will be withdrawn and will isolate him or herself from colleagues, family, and friends. Feelings of irritability occur and lead to anger outbursts. Most frequently abuse of substances such as alcohol, drugs, or food occurs. Spiritual The person suffering from compassion fatigue will begin to question their meaning of life and their decision to work in health care. Often times the person will also question and challenge their religious and cultural beliefs. Sometimes the person will lose his or her faith or become skeptical. Becoming angry and bitter with God and blaming him may also occur.
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