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Combating Compassion Fatigue - Essay Example

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The problem however is that little has been done to deal with the reaction of these losses that they daily experience in their work. The care for the vulnerable, ill,…
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Combating Compassion Fatigue
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Combating Compassion Fatigue

Download file to see previous pages... It ensures that the nurse associates with the feelings of the patients and that as the nurse cares for the person and their family, and they are moved to act with empathy. Compassion fatigue in this case of nursing describes a state of exhaustion with severe malaise that ensures form caring to patients and their significant others that experience different aspects of emotional spiritual and physical pain (Yoder, 2010). The cost nurses pay for caring for patients.
When compassion fatigue is not addressed in the early phases, it results to burnout. However, several differences are notable between the two terms. The conflict in the work setting of the nurse serves as the impetus for burnout while interpersonal intensity and emotional engagement are the impetus for compassion fatigue. Most of the time if the nurse is unable to cope with compasses fatigue and therefore to show compassion while caring for the patient, guilt and distress may result. Consequently, failure to adopt proper coping strategies for burnout result into powerlessness, fatigue and frustrations.
There are several etiologies and risk factor to compassion fatigue. These include the nurses who are first responders. These categories of nurses like the trauma and emergency nurses are more predisposed to first-hand strategies than others as they are at the front line of caring for these patients. These nurses are more predisposed because they daily have an obligation to meet patient needs on a “moment to moment “ basis and in a comprehensive manner. These makes these nurses have a strong empathically and emotional connection to these patients. This element of their work is made worse by a lack of formal support systems frequently to counter the squeal of negative feelings from their work (Coetzee & Klopper, 2010).
The other risk factors are found in nurses whose personality easily identifies with the nursing profession. These nurses have a ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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Combating Compassion Fatigue
They affect the workplace in terms of absenteeism, apathy, low morale, and decreased motivation. However, it is important to note that individuals suffering from compassion fatigue usually love their jobs. Compassion fatigue and burnout symptoms are divided into five major categories and they include cognitive, emotional, behavioral, spiritual, and somatic.
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Compassion fatigue is a problem in the nursing profession. It encompasses job stress and burnout, which are lessor forms of compassion fatigue. Job stress is stress that is experienced for a short period of time, and burnout is job stress which occurs over an extended period of time.
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This is usually accompanied by emotional pain where the caregiver becomes less empathetic (Figley, 2002). Some physical signs include muscle tension, digestive problems, headaches and chest pain. Emotional symptoms of compassion fatigue include mood swings, irritability, anxiety, oversensitivity, depression, anger, restlessness and poor concentration (Thomas & Wilson, 85).
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