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Mental Health

Veterinarians Face Higher Rates of Suicide

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CallieDeuel
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More than three decades of data shows that veterinarians are up to 3.5 times more likely to die by suicide than members of the general population, according to new a study in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association.
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CallieDeuel
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Vets who worked in clinical positions and specialized in treating small and companion animals, such as dogs and cats, had especially high rates of suicide, perhaps in part due to the emotional demands involved in that line of work
4 mths
Host
With the high suicide rates in the veterinarian field, what do you think can and should be done?
4 mths
pema.pema
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Veterinarians are frequently targeted by internet hate mobs. Uninformed internet hoards react strongly and swiftly when somebody appears to violate one of their pet causes. Especially if it's a literal pet cause. Shockingly, outraged internet mobs can sometimes go a little overboard -- and wind up killing somebody.
4 mths
nellie-mason, davidson-kyle, mohammed.albadane and 7 other people started following this discussion
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Some vets I talked with pointed out just how emotionally devastating it is to have to put some of your patients to sleep. And it often happens when death isn't medically necessary.
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4 mths
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The vets who manage well are those who find ways to relieve all that stress. They run, practice yoga, meditate, lift weights, take up photography, become expert cooks or join the community theater. Healthy vets regularly focus on other activities, and they reach out to others in their profession for help.
4 mths
Host
Your veterinarian works hard, long hours. Every week is challenging because he or she has probably had to put down two or three animals along the way. Your vet might carry a lot of school debt, too – and may not do much other than work and sleep.
4 mths
Host
If you care about your vet, be a friend. Don’t be a difficult client, and don’t expect free treatment. Most especially, don’t be a jerk. Your veterinarian got into this business for the love of animals. You probably have that in common. Show some compassion for your vet, just as your vet cares for your furry friends. Your heartfelt thanks might come at just the right moment. You never know.
4 mths
Host
A trauma that is unique to the profession is that decisions affecting diagnosis, treatment and quality of life of a patient are dependent on an owner’s financial capabilities. Sometimes, compounding their trauma is an owner upset that vets cannot perform services at no cost. Some pet owners would say that vets don’t love their pet enough just because they can't give their services for free. This furthers many veterinary professionals’ isolation and depression.
4 mths
More than 50 people have joined this discussion.
Host
In rural areas, vets must be on call all day, every day, and work extremely unpredictable hours. It's a lifestyle that doesn't foster much allowance for a healthy work-life balance, a venture in medical virtuosity that ends up eating away at your time, money, emotional state, and, in some cases, family life.
4 mths
Host
A trauma that is unique to the profession is that decisions affecting diagnosis, treatment and quality of life of a patient are dependent on an owner’s financial capabilities. Sometimes, compounding their trauma is an owner upset that vets cannot perform services at no cost. Some pet owners would say that vets don’t love their pet enough just because they can't give their services for free. This furthers many veterinary professionals’ isolation and depression.
Insensitive pet owners, they should know that vets also need to eat.
4 mths
Host
In rural areas, vets must be on call all day, every day, and work extremely unpredictable hours. It's a lifestyle that doesn't foster much allowance for a healthy work-life balance, a venture in medical virtuosity that ends up eating away at your time, money, emotional state, and, in some cases, family life.
This stress can sometimes cause vets to think they're underperforming, or somewhat unfit to practice medicine on animals, and in some cases can lead to investigation.
4 mths
Host
Vets can seek support systems like MightyVet - http://mightyvet.org/?rel=0.
3 mths