Study: Physicians in Their 40s Have Highest Stress Levels

A new study has found a correlation between physicians' stress levels and their age and years of experience, according to findings from Physician Wellness Services.

Stress peaks when physicians are in their 40s, plateaus in their 50s and begins to decline in their 60s. Physicians reported comparable levels of high stress when in their 60s as when in their 30s.

Data also shows mid-career physicians with 11 to 20 years of practice are more stressed than their colleagues who have less experience. Solo practitioners reported slightly higher daily stress levels and larger increases in stress than physicians in other practice settings.

"The significantly higher stress levels in mid-career physicians in their 40s and 50s is a trend that healthcare organizations and practice groups should be aware of so they monitor stress and explore ways to help physicians cope," Mitchell Best, Physician Wellness Services COO, said in the release. "These [physicians] are at a point in their lives where family pressures from their children and aging parents may be mounting, while job demands that come with experience levels are increasing."

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