According to a recently published international review paper, surprisingly many young doctors struggle with depression in silence. Researchers found that doctors in their early careers along with medical interns were either diagnosed with depression or showed clear symptoms of the disorder but failed to seek help.
Unfortunately, many of them refuse to seek professional help out of concerns that a history of mental health may affect their training, prevent them from obtaining a license, or give them a bad name among their colleagues.
Study authors believe that the entire medical training system may be at fault. Medical interns have the highest rates of depression in the entire population. Study authors believe that the residency with its long hours, paperwork, medical errors, and intense training may come as a shock to many young doctors after graduating medical school.
Study authors underscored that depression rates among interns and young doctors slightly increased in the last five decades. They believe that the statistically important raise may be linked to how practice of medicine is made today. Interns and young doctors alike need to do more paperwork with fewer chances of thinking on their own or learning.
Young doctors also sense pressure from online ratings of their performance and obnoxious patients that require medications for imagined conditions.
According to the review, which was based on a half-century of studies on depression affecting medical staffers, almost one-third of young doctors either struggle with depression or had symptoms in the early stages of their careers.
Study authors reported that up to 43 percent of young doctors were affected by some forms of depression. They also found that nearly 30 percent of medical interns had either the disease or displayed clear symptoms. By contrast, 6.7 percent of adult Americans reported a significant depressive episode in 2013, an official report shows.
Yet, medical doctors’ mental health is crucial to patients because depression in medical staffers had often been linked with poor health care and medical errors by past studies.
The review paper was published in the American Medical Assn.’s journal JAMA on Dec. 8.
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