SENSORY PROCESSING SENSITIVITY: IS BEING HIGHLY SENSITIVE ASSOCIATED WITH STRESS AND BURNOUT IN NURSING?
Redfearn, Robert Alan
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Nursing is a stressful profession with high levels of burnout among employees. Stress and burnout have been studied extensively in nursing, primarily in terms of organizational and social sources, as well as psychological factors. Studies of Sensory Processing Sensitivity (SPS), the trait that increases one’s potential to be overwhelmed by certain aversive stimuli both internally and environmentally, has recently provided increased empirical insight into the areas of stress and burnout. However, SPS has not been studied exclusively or expansively within the context of nursing. The present research explores major nursing stressors and burnout levels in nurses that are considered highly sensitive by nature compared to their less sensitive peers. Participants from Facebook, Allnurses, Reddit and a southern Texas hospital were recruited for this study. Sensory Processing Sensitivity was found to be a significant predictor for stress and burnout among nurses. Further significant findings are also discussed.