You’ve heard of it, you may know someone who has had it, you may have it.
Work place stress can be an outcome of many different factors from not having the right work life balance, strained workplace relationships, being unfairly treated, workload, lack of support and poor management, to changes at work such as those we have recently seen from the Coronavirus pandemic
Stress is part of everyday life and it can be helpful and motivating but when stress becomes overwhelming it can have a huge impact on an individual. Understanding and recognising the signs and symptoms of workplace stress early on is important for employees and employers to prevent the stress from spiralling into something more serious.
Workplace stress can present in many ways from physical symptoms to behavioural changes and it is important that individuals can identify symptoms and know what to do if they are struggling. It is also important that the employer can identify people who are struggling to be able to support them.
As an employer what can you do?
Complete a mental health course.
As an employer the mental wellbeing of your staff has to be a priority and having systems in place which support and help prevent workplace stress from presenting in your employees is one of the biggest steps you can take. It is important you have a good knowledge of what the signs and symptoms are so that you can manage it. All too often employers haven’t recognised or explored the possibility that someone is suffering from stress. They see someone who is struggling as a ‘problem’ employee, they are off sick, become disruptive, have a lack of motivation or turn up late. This person is then managed for poor attendance or performance, consequently further negatively impacting the situation. A course will provide you the knowledge you need to understand mental health, be able to manage staff and help prevent workplace stress from being present in your practice.Implement stress reducing activities
Working in a busy dental practice can be stressful enough but now working in enhanced PPE, having more procedures and policies to adhere to and dealing with worried and anxious patients can all equate to an even more stressful day. These stressors may become to much for some employees so it is important to have systems or activities in place which allow staff some downtime or to engage in something different, which isn’t another work activity, but some form of stress reducing activity to help them stay mentally well.
As an employee what can I do?
Ask for support
Asking for support is one of the most important things you can do and don’t be afraid to do it. Everyone needs help from time to time. Discussing your concerns with your manager is important, simply taking about it can help but by working together to look at ways of dealing with your worries is a great step.
If you can’t speak with your manager, speak with the HR department or a trusted colleague.
- Look after your physical health
Good physical health impacts positively on your mental health. Stress relief is one of the most common ways exercise can benefit your mental health. Take a walk in your dinner break, even if its not so nice outside don’t let the weather be an excuse, wrap up and get some fresh air and stretch your legs and notice how much better you feel.
Even after work, don’t just go home and put your feet up with a glass of wine. Take 15 minutes to do some yoga or a power workout, it will clear your mind and help you unwind from the day.
Don’t ignore work related stress. Get informed https://www.hse.gov.uk/stress/