Top tips for care staff coping with stress - Isla Stewart

March 3, 2021

Stress is an individual experience and may be caused by one or more of many different factors however a common consensus is that on-going stress can lead to health problems, affecting your well-being which also impacts on those around you.

The table below consists of common symptoms of stress, both physical and emotional.

- Headaches      

- Tearfulness

- Tiredness

- Anxiety

- Aches and Pains

- Panic

- Changes in weight

- Anger

- Changes in appetite

- Loneliness

- Changes in sleeping pattern

Recommendations on how nurses and carers can cope with stress

First and foremost I think it is important that you acknowledge that you are experiencing stress and identify exactly what is causing the stress. After which you can attempt different options to minimizing the stress.

This may mean eliminating the stressful situation completely; however in some cases this may not be possible.  The list below may be helpful in coping with stress. It is never OK to live with stress as this WILL have major consequences to your health.  

Ø  Speak to your manager, although this may be a scary thought they may offer practical solutions that may benefit you (e.g. change shift patterns).

Ø  Look at time management, as this will help you to priorities your daily duties and not do too much in a day.

Ø  Practice relaxation to control any negative physical symptoms of stress (e.g. counting to ten)   Often it is worth talking to your GP who may be able to refer you to counseling or other methods of support.

Ø  Speaking with family and friends, having a support network to express how you’re feeling will help you to better cope with a situation rather than keeping it all to yourself.

Ø  Attend local support groups, if you cannot find one start one yourself chances are others are in similar situations.      

Ø  Keep a weekly stress diary to reflect and identify specific events of what triggered the stress.


  • Identify what's causing it
  • Take steps to deal with the causes
  • Talk with your doctor if stressful symptoms last for more than a few week as depression and anxiety may be develop

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