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I feel like I'm a piss poor nursing student because there are things I'm getting taught that I don't do for myself. Outside of school/the hospital my handwashing is far from proper technique, you're not supposed to split un scored tablets, I take half of an un scored tablet each day, plus I have a self injury issue and the way I dress my cuts are far from proper wound care
I think every nurse does stuff in their personal life that they would never do at work. You can’t be on your nursing-game 24/7. You need to relax at one point. I rarely wash my hands with soap when I’m at home, because for one, my skin is almost falling off of my hands from washing them so often at work and because at home, there are no sick people that I’m in close contact with. I tell my patients to let me know right away if they have any pain or if the pain they’re having gets worse. But take something for my own headache? Maybe, if it interferes with what I’m doing.
In fact, I think everyone, no matter what their job is, does that. My brother’s a fashion student, takes a lot of care in what he wears. And yet, sometimes, he goes to the supermarket dressed in baggy track pants and a sweater that’s 2 sizes too big.
Because sometimes, you just need to say “fuck it”.
Your job, no matter how much you love it or how passionate you are about it, is only one part of your life. It shouldn’t take over your entire life. You need activities and a mindset outside of nursing, or it will get too draining after a while. This doesn’t mean you’re a bad student/nurse. What you do at work is what defines whether you’re a good nurse or not.
So don’t wash your hands, split those tablets (as long as they’re not the controlled release kind or stomach acid-resistant, I don’t see why you shouldn’t split them, unscored or not) and take some pressure off of yourself. It’s great that you’re so motivated, but enough relaxation is important as well! It’s okay to give yourself a break, because that’s taking good care of yourself too.
I hope you can overcome this self injury issue you mentioned! And okay, proper wound care is important, so give yourself the care you deserve!
I just had my first patient code and die on me last week and I don't think I'm dealing with it. Any advice?
Losing a patient unexpectedly is never easy to deal with. If it’s an expected, serene passing, you have time to prepare. But in a code-setting, there’s all the adrenaline and the tension, followed by that sense of defeat and sometimes failure. It’s so difficult to deal with because when we set out to become urses, we wanted to save everybody. But we can’t and that’s a fact of life we need to accept.
Losing someone doesn’t mean you’ve failed as a nurse! It is so important that you remember that! All the good you have done and will do isn’t cancelled out by a death. Like I said before: sometimes, eventhough we try our very best, we lose someone. There is always a part of the situation that we cannot control. Sometimes, a sepsis becomes worse eventhough the patient is receiving the correct treatment. Sometimes embolisms happen despite our best efforts, proven to be effective, to prevent them. Sometimes, our efforts just aren’t strong enough to deal with the whims of nature. Sometimes, we miss something because we are just so busy. We are only human.
Personally, I have a little ritual for when I lose a patient. I come home and light a candle I only use for times like these. I take as much time as I feel I need to think about what happened. Perhaps you can find something similar, something that works for you. a private moment to mark their passing and give yourself some closure.
It is so important to talk to people about this. Look for support from your loved ones. It’s not always easy to find if they’re not health care providers. Sometimes people are scared to talk about death, or are a little intimidated by the harshness of these situations. So talking to them about what happened may not always be easy. For me, whenever I’m having trouble dealing with certain events at work, I turn to family and friends for distraction. Call a friend and go do something that relaxes you. Go for a run, do some yoga, have a movienight,… Whatever it is you guys normally do.
And just as important: talk to your team. Some units have a debriefing after every event, be it a death, an accident or any other major event. It allows you to express yourself and look for support from people who were there with you, who can relate to what you feel. Look back at the situation, reconstruct it: what happened? Did everything go as it should have gone? What where the positive aspects of the response, what aspects need improving? If situations like these arise again, will you deal with them in the same way, or should something be adapted? If you’re team doesn’t have these debriefings, ask to sit down with any staff that was present: other nurses, the charge nurse, the doctor. Tell them what’s on your mind, what’s troubling you. They’ve been through what you’re going through, they can help.
It can help to take your grief, your anger, your frustration and use that energy as a positive force in your nursing. Show yourself just how good a nurse you are. Do your very best and you’ll see that the loss of a patient doesn’t mean your skills are lacking. You are still as good a nurse as you were before, sometimes you just need to remind yoursef of that.
Losing someone never really gets easier. But you learn to manage it, you learn to set it in a context that shows you that you did what you could. I’ve been a nurse for 4 years now. I’ve lost quite a lot of patients, both expectedly and very sudden, old, young,… Sometimes I still have trouble dealing, but I have found ways to get closure. You’ll get there too.
Hang in there. <3
how do you remove air from IV tubings, especially when its already half of the tube? i mean except from changing the IV line with a new one. thanks! :)
You can eiher open the roll clamp and hold the IV-bag below the patient. Blood will flow up into the tubing and push the air back into the IV bag. Remember to flush thoroughly after doing this, or the blood might coagulate in the tubing.
If it’s not too much air, I open the roll clamp and start rolling the tubing up around a pen or something, working my way up from below the air. This pushes the air upward into the IV-bag.
Sometimes I also let the air run out through the 3-way valve. Just open the IV and set the valve so it goes from the main line to open air. This obviously poses some concern in terms of sterility etc, so I only use this method in a critical situation, when I need to use the IV line immediatly.
Any advice on how to do well the TEAS? I'm about to take it on the 22nd of March. I gave myself ample time to prep, but I don't really know /how/ or /where/ to start.
I have absolutely no idea what the TEAS is.
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