It all seems so overwhelming..
- 0Dec 9, '08 by JAMIE__0421Hi! I am new to this site. I am a pre-nursing student completing my prerequisite classes so i can apply to my schools nursing program. and I have just been browsing through many posts on here like alot of the discussions about procedures, vitals, etc. and with all the letters, words, abbreviations, etc, it all seems overwhelming to me, kinda like a "foreign language". Sometimes I question my ability about whether i can learn all this information. I am confident that I can do and be whatever i want. its just that sometimes it all seems way out of my league. I have to remind myself that it will all be new to me and i just have to take it one step at a time.
Anyways, my main question is how difficult do you find it or did you find it making it through school? is learning all the different sayings easier than it looks??
- 1Dec 9, '08 by KellT1203I feel the exact same way that you do about learing all of the information we need to learn to become a nurse. The learning doesn't stop after school, it is going to be an ongoing thing. Think of nursing school (and school now) as if you are taking baby steps. You wont be thrown in there expecting to know EVERYTHING!!!
I just finished my first term of nursing school so I can't tell you a lot.
One thing I would suggest is get your CNA, and a take a medical terminology class. I had to take a med terms class when I went to school to get my medical assistant degree. I took a different med terms class when I was taking my pre-reqs for nursing (I went to a trade school for my MA). Med terms is going to help a lot! Things you read wont feel like such a foreing language. It will take some time to learn the lingo though. I have quite a bit of experience in the medical field and am still learning new terms.
- 1Dec 9, '08 by PianoGirl20I wouldn't worry too much about "learning the sayings." Once you're in the nursing program, doing clinicals, and in the whole "nursing zone," it will start to seem much more natural. Honestly, after a few weeks of nursing foundations, you'll find that already you're talking about "taking a set of vitals," "checking his pulse ox" and all of that stuff without even thinking much about it. After you have a little experience with the specialties (pediatrics, obstetrics, etc.) you'll know even more of the "foreign language." So, I wouldn't worry about doing anything special-it will certainly come with time.
- 1Dec 9, '08 by fsaavWhat will happen is that you'll start to learn it little by little and then before you know it most of what you read here will start to make sense. Don't worry, you're not going to be expected to know everything right away. It will come in small enough chunks of information that it is completely doable. Good luck!
- 2Dec 10, '08 by tridil2000You don't take your SATs in your freshman year for a reason. It's the same with this. You have tons of school ahead of you. Take it all in. You'll learn tons in the next 2 years and you'll be saying these terms around your house and finding youself writing c for "with" 24/7!
- 1Dec 10, '08 by oramar GuideWhen you get that overwhelmed feeling try focusing on the day in front of you and the immediate task. These journeys are taken one step at a time. Even though you should have a long term plan and goal, once it is in place only check it occasionally to see if it is need of being updated or changed. Everyone who completes big projects and accomplishes large goals will tell you they do it by breaking it down into small pieces and concentrating on one piece as at time. Good luck and God bless.
- 1Dec 10, '08 by DA314How do you accomplish any large task? One step at a time.
Your pre-reqs (which usually include anatomy and med term classes) will give you the building blocks you need. As mentioned earlier, a CNA class helps tremendously.
Then, when you hit nursing school, the classes will build on what you learned in the pre-reqs.
Real-life nursing will build on what you learned in school.
Try not to look too much at the whole picture, but focus on what you are learning right now. The rest will come in time.
- 1Dec 10, '08 by dorselmHere's what you can expect in school. The curriculum may differ but the jist of it is about the same from school to school.......
Nursing 100's- We learned about intro to nursing, nursing laws, Florence Nightingale and other nurses who paved the way. We also learned about communication skills and we had a 16 week pharmacology class. There was a lot of material learned but I took good notes, studied them and got low B's and high C's. At the endo of the 100's we started clinical. We were in the hospital for half days learning to do head to toe physical assessments, vitals, charting and patient interaction.
Nursing 200's, this is where we started studying the different systems indept. Being that we all had to take Anatomy and Physiology, we briefly went over this when going through each system but the main focus was learning normals and abnormals and what to do when you come across abnormals. One of our 200's courses focused on geriatrics and the others focused on all of the different systems including arterial blood gases, different iv solutions and how to give medications while adhering to the 5 rights (now 6) of medication administration. We also learned different procedures like foley catheter insertion and tracheotomy care. So that whatever we learned in class we could now perform when in the hospital. We would go into the hospital one day and get all of the information on our patient so that we could do careplans to tell us how to go about providing care for the patient. We also learned pathophysiology in the process. Clinicals were over at 2pm. We listened to report, got our patient(s), assessed, charted, gave meds, charted, performed total care if needed and gave end of shift report. Afterward we would all review our patient assignments and any interesting things that happened in clinical. In the beginning it was intimidating but by the end of the 200's I felt more comfortable.
Nursing 300's consisted of going to the Labor and Delivery and Postpartum department of the women's hospital in our city. From the day we got there we were right there assisting with births and after delivery we assisted in assessment and care of mother and baby. We also had rotations in the ICU where you had to assess all day long and chart and perform trach care, mouth care and all other care for patients on vents and hooked up to umpteen amounts of IV's. That's when everything started clicking and I really felt comfortable. I'll tell you though the first two weeks of Critical Care, I wanted to run for the hills. By the end, I loved it. We also had Psyche where we went to a psychiatric hospital and basically got the patients to tell us about their feelings. I still left around 2pm.
Now I'm in the 400's where it's called Transitions(preceptorship to others). For 8 weeks, I basically perform as a nurse with my own patients and everything. There are still some things that I can't do and I have a preceptor who checks my work and still contacts the doctors and enters orders and such but I care for the patient from beginning to end. I admit and discharge patients, perform all of the charting, give all meds, hang all IV's and monitor my patient's care for an entire shift. That shift can be 7-3, 3-11 or 11 to 7. It can also be 12 shifts as well. I will finish my last shift tomorrow and then I graduate on December 19th.
No matter what school you plan to attend, if you study and focus on your goal everyday and put your patient first, you will get through and be ready to practice as a beginning nurse.
I pray you are blessed (I don't believe in luck!)