Battling Burnout

Feb 1, 2023 | Member Providers, Providers

by Ray Foxworth, D.C., FICC • 

President & Founder, ChiroHealthUSA • 

Just how prevalent is burnout? For those in the chiropractic profession, burnout can manifest before they even begin active practice. A 2022 study highlighted in an article by the Australian Spinal Research Foundation, confirmed how earlier studies have discovered higher levels of depression, anxiety, and psychological distress among those in healthcare professions than in the general population.

The article also revealed that medical students were studied in three categories: exhaustion, cynicism, and reduced academic efficiency. Chiropractic students were found to exhibit high levels of emotional exhaustion, cynicism, and depersonalization. They also scored low in academic efficacy and personal accomplishment.

It’s clear that a chiropractor’s lot is in danger of becoming a weary and unhappy one from the outset. It’s vital that chiropractic students and practitioners alike learn to battle burnout as an educational and occupational necessity.

Beat Burnout with These Tips

Our focus today isn’t the symptoms of burnout, but how to battle them. Still, it’s handy to know what the signs are. Now that you do, here are four strategies to help.

1. Don’t Confuse Stress with Burnout

Making this distinction is vital to knowing what you’re really feeling. Nobody can avoid some degree of stress in their workday, and the right amount can even be beneficial to performance for some. Burnout starts with stress but is more severe than even extreme stress. Burnout won’t go away when you apply classic stress relievers such as exercise, hobbies, or time off. 

2. Know that Burnout Takes a Few Forms

Recognizing which kind of burnout is affecting you is key to finding the right solution. Are you dealing with worn-out burnout caused by constant intense stress? It may be frenetic burnout, where too much personal time and energy is being poured into work with a disproportionate reward. Perhaps it’s burnout through absence of challenge, which can cause you to become worn out by repetitive and unstimulating tasks. 

3. Remember You’re a Person First, and a Professional Second

Chiropractors devote their lives to recognizing and treating the pain of others. Yours comes first or you won’t be useful to anyone else. Are there issues in your personal life that are wearing you down? Is someone you care for facing a hard time? Practice owners and employees must be able to speak to each other openly as human beings. So, promote and expect an atmosphere of honesty and empathy in your practice. 

4. Practice These Four Pillars

Make the following lifestyle adjustments to keep burnout at bay.

  • Set Boundaries – Draw a healthy line between work and personal life by disengaging from professional concerns while out of the office and vice versa.
  • Eat to Manage Stress – Good fats, complex carbs, hydration
  • Exercise – Create a plan you can easily follow and stick to it
  • Prioritize Your Sleep – Routine and schedule matter


The quality of a practitioner’s health and professional focus can directly affect the quality of care they provide. Don’t let yourself, your patients, or your colleagues suffer. Want to learn more about how to overcome burnout? Join us for our upcoming webinar with Dr. Nona Djavid on April 18 at 2:15 PM EDT. Click here to learn more and register.