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Does Job Burnout Lead to Substance Abuse?

Something most people in the workforce have experienced is burnout. Long, hard, and stressful days often lead to exhaustion and frustration. Winning the lottery and never having to return to work again begins to sound more and more enticing after these days. However, waking up in the morning to do it all over again is likely the reality. Many people turn to drugs and alcohol to cope after days like these, to relieve stress and anxiety caused by work stressors. When someone spends their nights drinking and using drugs, it’s easier to see the correlation between burnout and substance abuse.

What is Job Burnout?

Have you ever felt overly exhausted, annoyed or even extremely frustrated when you leave work? You’ve had a hard and stressful day, and leaving work should be almost a relief, yet the stressors just follow you out the doors? You may be experiencing job burnout. The phrase “job burnout” refers to a workplace specific type of stress. According to the Mayo Clinic, it is a “state of physical or emotional exhaustion” related to the workplace.

Causes of Job Burnout

Often, people experience less than comfortable, or healthy work environments. In these situations, there may be more stress than the usual job entails, allowing for employees to feel extra run down at the end of the day. Most people may feel like this is normal, and not identify the fact that they could be experiencing burnout.

There is no one cause of job burnout. It can be any combination of different stressors or situations within the job setting that can cause one to feel “burned out”. Some of those stressors include, but are not limited to things like:

  • Not having clear direction for your job.
  • Feeling a lack of control
  • Feeling a lack of support 
  • Poor work-life balance
  • Unhealthy work environment

Having that heavy workload, and extremely long hours with constant stress, can lead to feeling burnt out from work. Experiencing this, often leads to unhealthy coping mechanisms. This can lead to people suffering from both burnout and substance abuse.

Does Job Burnout Lead To Substance Abuse?

When experiencing the uncomfortability of job burnout, it is understandable to want to find ways to relieve these feelings. Whether that be acting out with outbursts of anger, or throwing yourself further into the thing causing the emotional turmoil you may be experiencing. However, some more unhealthy ways of dealing with job burnout is by turning to alcohol or drugs

Burnout and substance abuse can go hand in hand, given the right circumstances. Some people feel like the only way to unwind and relax after working all day is by having a beer, or glass of wine. Others turn to more illicit drugs. Either way, this can lead to a physical dependence on these substances and end up causing more harm than good.

Burnout and Stimulant Abuse

Have you ever had a specific project due and not enough time to do it? Do you sometimes feel like if you had more energy, you could be more efficient at work? These are common problems and thoughts. Many people who are experiencing these thought processes turn to stimulants such as cocaine, because they feel like they could accomplish more in a shorter amount of time. 

Using stimulants can give the illusion of efficiency. It may feel like you are doing more work, and accomplishing things you wouldn’t be able to without the drug. However, oftentimes stimulants cause erratic and very inefficient behaviors. Feeling overwhelmed and stressed at work, and using stimulants to help with these feelings can lead a person to suffering from both burnout and substance abuse issues. This can lead to negative consequences, including job loss, which can cause worse.

Burnout and Alcohol Abuse

More often than not, after a long and stressful day at the office, people want to go home and have a drink. Having long, hard, stressful days most days out of the week, leads to drinking more often than usual in order to “relax”. The more stress in the day, the stronger the drink can become. Job burnout and substance abuse being so closely related, can cause even worse problems. While the workplace environment may be stressful, drinking heavily after work can lead to missing work or being late repeatedly, which can result in job loss. The loss of a job can cause an even deeper spiral into drinking.

Get Help for Substance Abuse in TN

Substance abuse can be detrimental in anyone’s life. When it comes to overcoming substance abuse, seeking professional help is very beneficial to a success story. Here at Brentwood Springs Detox, we strive to provide the best care possible for those seeking help. Personalized care, in a safe and healing environment is a great way to start getting better, and with our help it is possible to gain control of your life back. Contact us today or visit our admissions page.

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