Same stuff. Different day.
Have you ever seen Groundhog Day? In this movie, a man, Bill Murray, is stuck in a repeating cycle, forced to live the same day over and over until he finds a way to break the spell.
Sometimes, your job can feel like you’re stuck in an endless loop. As a nurse, you can often feel like you’re living in your personal version of Groundhog Day, doing the same jobs day in and day out. Here are five repeated tasks a nurse does that can make you feel as if you are re-living a cold February day, waiting for the first sign of spring.
It’s your job as a nurse to make sure your patients are not only healthy but also clean. After all, no one is going to get over their illness or avoid wound complications if they aren’t getting regular baths and a change of clothing. Your job is going to include helping patients with daily bathing, oral care, cleaning, grooming and even changing incontinence pads as needed. Oh, and don’t forget about changing the bed linens.
Nurses administer medications throughout the day and night, and all patients are going to have a slightly different time when they need their medications. This is one of your top priorities for those patients who need precisely timed treatment regimens.
Every single time you step into a patient’s room to do a vitals check, help with hygiene or deliver medication, you must keep a record. Be prepared to spend a lot of time on your paperwork or your computer tracking your actions and activities.
A nurse must complete a head-to-toe assessment of each patient, including all vitals, at least one time per shift. With multiple patients to care for, this is a lot of what takes up a nurses’ time. Also, every time you interact with your patients, you’ll find yourself assessing visual signs of illness or problems.
Finally, it’s your job as a nurse to listen to your patients. Talking to the patient about his or her health concerns, and bringing those concerns to the attention of the doctor or head nurse, is a big part of what you do. Often, it’s you who will first hear of a problem that could indicate a complication or progression of a condition.
Today’s nurses are on the frontline of patient care, and is a rewarding career to pursue, even if some days feel like a rerun of Groundhog Day.
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