Feelings of Emotional Exhaustion and Depersonalization Predict Self-Report of Trouble Sleeping for Nurses Working in Hospital Environments
Conference contribution, 2019
Introduction American nurses report sleeping an average of 6.8 hours per night on workdays, which is less than the recommended 7-9 hours. Burnout, which is comprised of emotional exhaustion (EE), depersonalization (DP) and personal accomplishment (PA), is common among nurses and may contribute to insufficient sleep quantity and sleep disruption. We aimed to investigate if burnout, measured using the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI), predicted self-report of trouble sleeping for nurses working in the hospital. Methods This is a secondary report of a prospective crossover trial of nurses assigned to either 6 weeks of daily work-breaks in an outdoor hospital garden or 6 weeks of indoor-only breaks. After a 1-week washout period, break assignments were switched for an additional 6 weeks. Nurses completed the MBI at the beginning and end of each 6-week period. Each workday, nurses completed a visual analog scale reporting no trouble sleeping to much trouble sleeping immediately following a break. For this analysis, we used initial MBI subscale score (EE, DP, PA) as a predictor of mean trouble sleeping over the subsequent 6-week period regardless of break location using generalized estimating equations. Results A total of 29 nurses (27 females, mean age 42.8 years) participated. Most (n=20) worked dayshift, and 9 worked night shift. Initial MBI subscale score, regardless of break location, was predictive of mean self-report of trouble sleeping over the subsequent 6-week period for EE (p<0.001) and DP (p=0.004), but not for PA (p=0.48). When divided by break assignment (indoor-only vs garden), results were similar for EE (indoor p<0.001; garden p<0.001), DP (indoor p<0.001; garden p<0.001), and PA (indoor p=0.20; garden p=0.49). Conclusion The MBI subscales of EE and DP were predictive of self-report of trouble sleeping for nurses in this study. Further research using objective measures of sleep are needed to confirm and extend these preliminary observations. Support (If Any) Funding for this research was provided by the TKF Foundation as part of the National Open Spaces Sacred Places Initiative.