lifestyle

How To Get To Your Residency Interviews

This post is all about getting ready for residency interviews. I essentially just began interviewing, so much of the information in my next two posts will be based on advice from countless friends, blogs, and attendings, in addition to my personal experience. I’ll follow these up with a post at the end of interview season to add anything I wish I had known beforehand. The very first step in preparing for interviews is setting up your 4th year schedule. This is based completely on personal preference and the requirements of your specialty. I took Step 2 in late June because about 30% of General Surgery programs require a Step 2 score for an interview. I chose an easy rotation in October, so that I could check my email constantly, and I am taking November and December off for interviews. Like I said, this is personal preference. Air travel stresses me out, so trying to arrange flights around an active rotation would drive me insane. I’d rather just have a rotation in April while the rest of my friends are on a beach somewhere. But the beach might be really important to you, so you’ll figure out how to make it work. As for the items below, you should start this process in September, before you actually get invited to any interviews (or even earlier if you have busy rotations in...

What to Do Over the Long Thanksgiving Weekend

The Thanksgiving break is in the air and there’s so much that you’re thankful for, like, perhaps, the break from a stressful semester? Being a medical student is not easy, you’re either constantly working or studying; there are simply no breaks. That means when Thanksgiving comes around, you’re in desperate need to lounging out, stuffing yourself like the turkey on your plate and simply having a good time with the family. Sounds easy? For most students, it’s really not. You’re so accustomed to constantly being busy that staying free simply doesn’t feel right. Thankful for Thanksgiving “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. But all play and no work makes him something worse”- Samuel Smiles The key is to balance it out but don’t worry, the struggle may be real but it’s not the end of the world. Here are a few tips to help you make the most of your long weekend: 1.    Take a break Of course your friends are family are excited to have a doctor in the house but you need to give yourself priority first. That means avoid anything medical related, give your mind a break and just lounge out. Don’t: Psychoanalyze Prescribe drugs Diagnose health problems Instead you should read a novel or two, watch movies and put a halt to your medical knowledge for just a short while because you...

Top Three Worst Diseases in the Fall Time and My Experiences with Each

The Fall is a time for pumpkin picking, apple picking, leaf picking, but most importantly; illness.  Here are the three worst diseases I have come encounter with this Fall. Pneumonia Recently my roommate contracted Pneumonia and was hospitalized for 4 days and returned back to New Jersey for a week.  Now for all you doctors and residency students you are probably thinking “yea of course pneumonia sucks,” but it is a completely different thing to have it in a dorm room.  Confined space is where disease thrives, and me walking back into a room smelling of puke, gastric acid and lysol was quite possibly the worst sick cocktail smell of all time.  He stared me in the face said “I have a fever of 103.8, I think something’s wrong.”  Luckily I grew up in a medical household and have contracted every disease you can think of, strep, mono, scarlet fever.  So I knew that he wasn’t doing to great.  After three hours in the ER they finally said I could leave him and I returned back to the dorm.  For the next three days I couldn’t bring myself to enter into the room with the smells and finally got some of the girls down the hall to do a cleansing.  My roommate returned healthy after a little more than a week, and the room now smells of sweet Lysol....

Drinking Nescafé: How Strong Is Your Caffeine Addiction?

Today I bought a giant can of Nescafé just to get the free sugar bowl that came with it. We already have a whole set of mugs I acquired the same way. My husband thinks I’m crazy and he keeps hiding the mugs in the deepest recess of the kitchen cupboard. But I like the mugs. I am genuinely thrilled by our new sugar bowl. It’s a cheery red and says Nescafé across the top. I like the stuff and I like Nescafé. You all think I’m crazy now. I mean, it’s not just instant coffee, it’s mediocre instant coffee made by a giant conglomerate. Some people will argue it’s the most disgusting coffee on earth. Why, exactly, would I want it to decorate my kitchen? The thing is, Nescafé is a symbol for me. When I started my aid career, I didn’t drink coffee at all. It was bitter and unpleasant and I usually got enough sleep that I didn’t need the caffeine. Then I moved overseas for my first aid job, and now I don’t just drink coffee. I drink Nescafé. And I LIKE it. It might be the most disgusting coffee on earth, but it’s available everywhere. You’re never without caffeine if you can tolerate Nescafé. Every single time a health official, a nurse, a community member or a colleague breaks out the coffee to welcome their...

5 Ways How E-Learning Can Simplify Your Medical Studies

E-learning has brought about a great revolution in almost all fields of study, and none more so than in the medical fraternity. Learning from online medical courses has opened up new ways of studying, and brought about more opportunities for students to understand the subject material in a completely novel fashion. Traditional education is fraught with multiple limitations; chief amongst them being their shortage of resources at hand to teach a subject, as well as their relative inflexibility. The high cost and busy classrooms of many medical schools forbid effective learning in an aspiring student, killing their enthusiasm and the joy of learning that makes medicine beautiful, but, the rapid advances of digital technology throughout the world has led to a proliferation of services offering replacement, or supplemental, medical courses online. This has rapidly advanced the learning opportunities for medical students around the world and simplified medical studies. The following article lists the various ways in which online medical courses have simplified the task of delivering high-quality medical education to any willing learner. E-Learning gives students guidance Medicine is vast and often students get lost in that vastness without the right learning and guidance. Good e-learning courses offer an effective way out to master the medical program by providing a learning schedule. Moreover, keeping record of the students’ performance and measuring progress is essential to help students mastering the...

Yes, Physician Burn-Out Is Real

They say dentists have a high rate of suicide due to the anxiety associated with their jobs. A criminal justice professor at Wayne State University, Steven Stack, studied the correlation between dentistry and suicide. In 1996 he conducted a study that cited several years of previous research on suicide rates among dentists and proved that being a dentist increased one’s risk of suicide by 564 percent! Job burn-out is a real thing. Or, in our case, physician burn-out. As future doctors, we like to think that once we become board-certified snazzy physicians, life will be perfect. We will love our jobs that we’ve worked so hard towards, and every day at the job will feel like a true gift. Well, not to be the bearer of bad news, but that won’t necessarily be the case. So I am here to expose the ugly truth of medicine; ie., the medical specialties yielding the highest reported rate of burn-out. According to the Mayo Clinic, job burn-out is defined as the following: “Job burn-out is a special type of job stress — a state of physical, emotional or mental exhaustion combined with doubts about your competence and the value of your work.” The Mayo Clinic then states several factors that may lead to job burn-out. To name a few, these can be, but are not limited to: Lack of control, unclear job expectations, dysfunctional workplace...

QUIZ: Learn To Stay In Shape With The Right Exercise Program

So, you’re thinking of getting into shape. There are plenty of options available ranging from the rush of competitive sports to the tranquillity of yoga. Not everything is going to be a perfect match for you and it’s best to do some research before you dive head first into a new fitness regime. Whatever your personality, it’s vitally important to keep fit and make sure you exercise regularly. This quiz will help you decide which type of physical activity is right for you. Find Your Ideal Exercise Match Group Activities You’re a competitive, spontaneous exercise machine. You thrive testing your abilities against others whether it be on the track or at the gym. Recommended Workouts: – Team Sports – Competitive Running – Martial Arts – Zumba – Spinning Solo Workouts You’re confident in your abilities and don’t mind being around others when working out but prefer to focus on your own development. Recommended Workouts: – Weight Training – Jogging – Mountain Biking – Skiing – Cardio Conditioning Calming Exercises You prefer to be alone when you exercise and predominantly use it as a way to decrease stress. The perfect work out is one that not only keeps you fit but also centres you. Recommended Workouts: – Yoga – Thai-Chi – Swimming – Cycling – Walking Do you like to be spontaneous? What is your biggest motivation to exercise? Would...