What are the most common disabilities that you deal with as a nurse working with the developmentally disabled? What special skills or nursing knowledge is most important if you want to work in this area?
Dec 11, '09
ALso, what is a typical day like for a nurse working in this field? Are you mostly passing meds and helping patients with ADL's?
Dec 20, '09
I work in a hospital for profoundly disabled children, all of whom have a variety of developmental delays. The most common form of disability we see is cerebral palsy and spastic quadriplegia in their severest forms. These are often secondary to birth or in utero traumas or other specific disabilities. We see a lot of strange, rare and very off disabilities and disorders, too.
What skills do you need? Empathy and patience. One of the most challenging aspects of the job is that connecting with your clients is so difficult because they don't respond and communicate the way the general population does. It's often really difficult to connect with your patients, which can be frustrating.
What is a typical day like? Mine generally involves bathing/showering, feeding (both orally and via tube), cleaning teeth (this is a huge thing), changing/checking nappies and trying to engage with the kids. Sometimes it's putting music on or giving the kids a massage or even just talking to them.
Feb 2, '10
Good day!! I am also working in a facility for the developmentally disabled here in arabia, most cases of are patients are profoundly developmentaly disabled, mentally retarded, and post stroke patients. Every day is a routine we pass medications, arrange and bring patients to specialists clinics and hospitals for their appointment check ups. We don't do bathing and and other ADL'S because we have attendants to do them we only monitor them. But we have to intervene when patients have complaints and in cases of abuse.
Feb 6, '10
Down's Syndrome is probably the most common, along with Autism and varying degrees of Cerebral Palsy. Many of the folks I help to care for a dual diagnosis as well, developmentally disabled and mentally ill.
In my opinion, in order to work in this field, empathy is a biggie, the other is a true love for the job and the people.
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