Case study ( 3127 views as of January 26, 2021 )
Peter is a 26-year-old nurse who "lost it" on a patient and their family members at work. They complained about the food, and Peter ranted on about the hospital not being a hotel, and if they didn't like the service, they could "get the hell out". This behaviour was totally out of character for Peter, who had previously been considered a mentor by many colleagues for his caring bedside manners.
Peter has been working a lot of nights for the last three years. He is single, and doesn't mind trading with colleagues who want more time home with their kids. Increasingly though, Peter has had a hard time sleeping more than 4-5 hours after a night shift, and is finding himself alternately very drowsy or edgy and irritable at work, and very restless and agitated when at home. He finds it extremely frustrating to be home in bed, tossing and turning, and unable to sleep.
Peter has been trying over-the-counter sleep aids, and even takes "NyQuil" when he doesn't have a cold. They help him get to sleep, but 3-4 hours later, he's awake and can't get back to sleep. He tried having a beer before sleep, but it just made him wake up to have to urinate, and he worries about alcoholism, which runs in his family.
Peter needs to connect with a primary care provider. Healthcare workers often neglect their own health needs, and may require peer or employee specific services. Stress, anxiety, and sleep symptoms often go together, and a variety of other services may be of benefit.Author: Dr. Adam Lund