Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Medical School and My Sanity

Medical school wasn't a piece of cake, but I guess that's no new news to anyone. Medical school causes anxiety and depression in students, many people don't realize that.

The stigma of mental illness is still at a high, no-one wants to admit to having any mental problems but medical school leaves quite the dent in a student's psyche. It wasn't easy for me.

This morning, as I went through my ritual of reading tweets in bed I stumbled upon a discussion between a former student of my school (who is now finishing up his specialty abroad) and a doctor currently teaching at my school. And I had a panic attack.

They were describing how now there are doctors at the doors of the hospital to inspect students' wardrobe and nails. Yes, you read that correctly. Wardrobe and nails. Let's set aside the different connotations of such an act and focus for a second on how I, a former student who is currently practicing and managing a health care center, just had a panic attack so terrible it required teddy bear hugging and cat cuddling, along with breathing exercises and whatnot.

Just the thought of walking through the doors of that hospital again gives me a panic attack. Am I the only one? not according to some studies (here and here) which apparently should warrant more studies.

"Doctors make bad patients" comes to mind. We're too preoccupied by our studies, patients, life happening elsewhere while we're stuck in a never-ending cycle of trying to fix things and we don't consider things happening to us to be serious enough. Our mental health deserves our time, we should take better care of it.

P.S. I am jet lagged, and I slipped on ice/rain and only sought medical attention a few days after (when my knee started swelling and the bruise was too painful. Now I can't go up stairs)

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