The ProspectiveDoctor Podcast

StressFreeMD

Erkeda DeRouen talks to Dr. Robyn Tiger, a diagnostic radiologist and a trauma-informed self-care coach. She is also the founder of StressFreeMD, a wellness practice that seeks to educate others about stress management in order to positively impact their well-being. Today, Erkeda chats with Dr. Tiger about her own medical journey and how she learned to practice self-care to combat chronic stress.

  • [00:27] Dr. Tiger’s Medical Journey and Discovery of Self-Care
  • [07:21] Why Dr. Tiger Started StressFreeMD
  • [09:49] Why Practice Self-Care?
  • [14:40] The Self-Care Formula
  • [17:36] Rx Inner Peace: A Self-Care CME Accredited Program
  • [22:33] Dr. Tiger’s Advice to Pre-meds and Medical Students

Dr. Tiger’s Medical Journey and Discovery of Self-Care

Dr. Tiger’s interest in medicine began when she saw a life-sized skeleton in her 3rd grade class. She realized that those bones make up the human body. From then on, she knew she wanted to become a physician. Fast forward to a few years later, she eventually fulfilled her aspiration to become a diagnostic radiologist.

As Dr. Tiger’s personal and professional responsibilities started to pile up, she struggled to keep pace. The constant stress triggered symptoms like migraines, reflux, and paresthesia. Mentally, she also had a tough time dealing with dark thoughts. Fortunately, all these conditions went away when Dr. Tiger discovered self-care. Stress takes its toll on both the mind and the body but you can counter these effects through personal care.

Why Dr. Tiger Started StressFreeMD

A 2016 study by the Journal of the American Medical Association found that 1 out of 4 medical students showed symptoms of depression. A separate study by Medscape found that 50% of physicians felt burnt out before the pandemic. Currently, that number has increased, with 2/3 of physicians expressing the same sentiments. What’s even more worrying is that only a small fraction of both students and doctors sought help.

With her knowledge about self-care and stress management, Dr. Tiger feels the need to share her expertise to help others who feel weary. By encouraging more people to prioritize themselves, she can help prevent future health problems that are physical or psychological in nature.

The Self-Care Formula

Everyone has some form of trauma or stress. To practice self-care, Dr. Tiger asserts that you need to learn how to control your thoughts and physiology. Be intentional about your beliefs because this will ultimately influence your feelings and actions. It’s also important to know how to control our bodies. Through simple breathing and movement exercises, you can regulate your autonomic nervous system. These practices can help you feel calm despite your surroundings.

Self-care involves both the mind and the body. It can look different for each person but it’s ultimately a way of life. It’s about being mindful of how you feel and taking active steps to manage stress.

Follow and reach out to Dr. Robyn Tiger on her Instagram. You can also contact her on her website: stressfreemed.net. Listeners can use this discount code “PDPODCASTHALFOFF” for any of her online self-care courses.

Got questions, feedback, or suggestions? Send a message to Dr. Erkeda DeRouen’s Instagram or MedSchoolCoach Instagram.

Erkeda DeRouen

Dr. Erkeda DeRouen is a graduate of Hampton University with a B.S. in Biological Sciences, followed by completing medical school at the Boston University School of Medicine. She then completed residency at The University of Maryland Family and Community Medicine Program. After that, she worked at an underserved community health center, and currently is an Associate Medical Director of a telemedicine company. She recently became one of the first 1,000 lifestyle medicine certified physicians in the world! Her areas of interest include: health equity and eliminating health disparities, service of underserved populations, HIV management, transgender care, mentorship, and lifestyle medicine.

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