I think its more stressful and easier at the same time. It's less physically demanding, you arent continually getting people who can barely stand (or cant stand) in and out of wheelchairs and on and off the toilet. Its also nice not having to get people in and out of regular clothes that barely fit them, and cleaning up an incontinent mess is a heck of a lot easier when they are in a hospital gown than it is in street clothes. You also usually have all the supplies you need, unlike in LTC.
I think its more stressful because its more unpredictable. Maybe that depends somewhat on the type of unit youre on, but I work on a medical/surgical and telemetry unit that has a mix of just about everything. Maybe other units have more of a set routine when you see the same thing over and over. We also get a fair number of patients with psychiatric/behavioral issues, which I suppose isnt real different from dealing with people with dementia, except they can be a lot younger and move a lot faster, and sometimes be more unpredictable.
Youre gonna constantly have new patients. This might also depend on what type of unit you are on, but on med/surg almost every shift you have new patients admitted, and you rarely take care of the same person more than a week or two. This is generally a positive thing to me, because if you have a patient thats really hard or a pain in the butt, you know you wont have to put up with them for too long.
You do get to know some patients well because they are frequent fliers who are admitted on a regular basis. These patients are often the toughest because they sometimes have a laundry list of medical problems, or a serious disease that gets progressively worse. We get some that are a walking(or bed bound) encyclopedia of diseases, with just about everything under the sun from Cancer to CHF to COPD, renal failure, liver failure, dementia, and other things I cant spell. Then again a lot of LTC patients are the same way.