Busting Myths About Medical Schools
There are a lot of misconceptions regarding medical school. Some of these may make you feel apprehensive, while others may excite you. In any case, you must enter with reasonable expectations. Many individuals will advise you that you should be aware of what you're putting yourself into.
Most people's opinions of medical school are shaped by popular culture depictions of medical students and physicians, as well as prevalent preconceptions that are frequently offered as realities. Television and movies often exaggerate specific parts of life as a medical student or resident, but they seldom portray the entire picture.
Here are frequent myths about medical school that may make you nervous about the thought of enrolling in one.
Myth 1: The clock will always tick.
Many individuals are concerned about this. The fact is that extracurricular activities can always be done. To fit around the tight schedule and test seasons, most medical schools have separate 'medic' sports teams, and members of these teams are likely to understand the stress you're under.
There will be time for baking, jazz, or ice hockey if you schedule your job correctly. It's critical to recognize that extracurricular activities are an essential component of medical school and will assist you in achieving the elusive work-life balance!
Myth 2: Everyone is smarter than you.
Impostor syndrome is a fairly prevalent experience among medical school students. It's easy to feel disoriented when you go from a place where you were at ease and maybe even at the top of your class to a place where you're surrounded by individuals who have accomplished a lot.
It's important to realize that we're all in the same boat. Gone are the days when you had to compete with your neighbors. We're all in the same boat, and we must assist one another. Topics that are simple for you may not be easy for others; the essential thing is to recognize that and support one another.
Myth 3: You must have a clear idea of the specialization you want to pursue.
When most students start medical school, they have no idea what they want to specialize in. It's sometimes beneficial to approach a job with an open mind so that you may sample a range of specializations before deciding on and committing to a vocation that you enjoy. Your clinical years will be spent rotating among several hospitals and specializations; this is when you'll get a true sense of what life is like in a certain specialty and decide whether it's really what you want to do.
Some students are unaware that they do not need to specialize immediately after graduation. If you work in the NHS, you will spend two years as a foundation year doctor rotating through several rotations; who knows, you could change your mind during one of these rotations and realize that it was all along what you intended to do.
Myth 4: Before enrolling in medical school, you must have a broad understanding of a variety of topics.
It might be overwhelming when you first start medical school since everyone around you has various skill sets and career experiences, making it difficult to know what you're supposed to know and what you'll be taught.
The fact is that most schools teach the fundamentals of most areas, therefore it won't matter how much you know. CPR is a wonderful illustration of this. CPR has been covered in many first aid courses; however, addressing it again in clinical skills training will refresh the memory of those who have already done it and assist those who haven't.
Myth 5: You'll have to fend for yourself.
Especially if you are living alone for the first time, it might feel like you are alone and that there is no one to aid you. Students that are having difficulty can receive assistance. Special accommodations, such as the extra time during examinations or deadline extensions, can be made in the event of extreme circumstances.
Even for those who aren't having major difficulties but are overwhelmed by the workload, most medical schools have support systems in place to assist students in organizing their studies by assisting them in creating schedules and even providing extra classes.
Mentoring is also quite popular at medical schools, and it's a great method to figure out precisely what you're suffering from and how to fix it, whether it's from students in the year above, healthcare professionals, or academic staff.
Myth 6: No sleep and all coffee!
"I didn't sleep a wink last night!" we've heard it all before. I've had ten cups of coffee in total!" Of course, there will be days when you feel compelled to go all out. So, immediately before the exam, you'd start drinking coffee and pulling an all-nighter. However, remember that self-care is an important part of giving your all. When you're sleep-deprived and relying only on coffee, you won't be able to function at your best.
Everyone studies in their manner. You may drink as much coffee as you want and sleep as little as you want, but you must recognize when it becomes harmful. In medical school, I only pulled one all-nighter. I had a strong rule with myself to sleep and take breaks at specific times, even if it meant earning a lesser grade on tests. As a prospective doctor, you must be able to manage your time effectively. You'll burn out before you realize it if you can't perfect that talent.
Myth 7: Med school is survival of the fittest
Many people who get into medical school have spent their whole lives competing with others – and they're terrific at it. As a result, it stands to reason that medical school will be competitive as well. After all, getting into medical school and residency needs you to outperform other applicants... right? That isn't entirely correct.
It's stressful enough as it is in medical school; there's no need to add competitiveness to the mix. Medical students must keep an eye out for one another. We're all going in the same direction, but some roads are bumpier than others. So, once you've established a solid foundation, provide a helping hand to those in need.
Hopefully, we've dispelled some of the falsehoods you've heard on the internet. The important thing to remember is that none of this should deter you from applying.
Even if you've read on Student Room that someone's friend's mate studies 16 hours a day, you'd be stupid not to pursue your ambition of becoming a doctor and caring for patients if you're on track to earn the grades and perform well on admissions exams and interviews. He most likely doesn't; if he does, it's on him, not the majority!