Medicine and mental health: relax, the doctor is a lifelong learner

Vytenis Andriukaitis 2017_

Vytenis Andriukaitis, Member of the EC in charge of Health and Food Safety, participates in the Ministerial Conference on the follow up to the fipronil incident. Date: 26/09/2017 Reference: P-035227/00-16 Location: Brussels – EC/Berlaymont. © European Union , 2017 / Source: EC – Audiovisual Service / Photo: Dario Pignatelli.

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Ms Nabella Meriem Annisa Fitri. She is a fourth year Medical Student at General Achmad Yani University, Indonesia . Ms Nabella Meriem Annisa Fitri is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). However, the opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.

Being a doctor is not an easy thing. They are “the chosen people” who will become a doctor. Starting from the beginning of entering the faculty of medicine, which only a few universities who provide medical faculty. Each university received only a few students too. It’s really tight competition! Plus, we should pass through some difficult tests. After becoming a medical student, there are more and more challenges.

Begin from the demands of learning basic medical science such as anatomy, biochemistry, histolgy, physiology et al. We learn new things that have never been learned in previous schools like medical skills up to various tests that certainly take up time for it’s preparation. Sometimes we feel tired and jealous with our friends at other faculty who can hang out with their friends.

Sometimes we feel it will be much better if we can go to clinical years as soon as possible. In pre-clinical years, our responsibility is only for our self, but if we have entered the clinical year, the greater responsibility we have. We meet the real patient. Our knowledge and skills that we obtain during the pre clinical years will be applied from this year.  Some of us maybe want to go back to pre clinical years, because evidently clinical years are getting harder than before. In the clinical phase, there are some people who can not wait to be a specialist or get another master’s degree in order to focus on their field.

Getting a doctor’s title is thought to be the end, unfortunately, this is a wrong assumption. The responsibility of the patient is already in our hands now. People’s lives are in our hands! It means that whatever we do now can be our luck or even become our boomerang. Our society is now legally literate, all the actions we take will be highlighted. If there is a little negligence, then we can be brought to justice!

Furthermore, if we have become a specialization, our responsibility is even greater because we have become a master in the field. Those who become lecturers also have a great responsibility, educating students to be better than the teacher is not an easy thing. One pattern we can see from this cycle is that we want to end quickly, but there is no end to a doctor’s life to learn. There is a saying that says “Congratulations! You finally go into the hole of medicine”. There is also a saying “We are lifelong learners!” Finally, at this point I know the meaning of that two proverbs. This seems to be felt by all medical students and doctors in the world.

Doctors are human too. We can get sad and upset, even become stressful and lead to depression phase. A falling marriage, social isolation, death of spouse, childhood trauma, financial distress, and family history of depression can lead someone into depression phase. Before it’s too late, we have to remember what we do for others.

We always want our patients healthy by reminding them of healthy ways to eat such as eating nutritious foods, exercising, avoiding stress, getting enough sleep, and recreation. However, we ourselves often forget it and ignore it. We must also apply it to our daily life! We know better for our health but we are negligent with our health too. Believe me, our lives will always be busy like this. If we can not get used to it from now, we will be dissolved in fatigue, stress, even depression. The result? The medical worker will not be able to work properly.

About the writer

Ms Nabella Meriem Annisa Fitri is a fourth year Medical Student at General Achmad Yani University, Indonesia with an interest in public health, menthal health, and advocacy. Current position as Human Resources Development for Information, Communication, and Technology in Indonesian Medical Students Excecutive Boards’ Association and Student Council in Medical Faculty of General Achmad Yani University. She has skills in photography, videography, and design.

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