Desensitization??

  1. Hi everyone! My name is Melissa, and I just turned 20. I am a sophomore in college, and part of me has always wanted to go into nursing. I absolutely LOVE helping and taking care of people -- nothing brings me more joy. However, I kind of pushed aside my dream of becoming a nurse because I have somewhat of a weak stomach. I don't do particularly well with needles and blood (though it's not too bad), and I cringed when I tried to watch videos of different surgical procedures online. This is the only reason I can think of as to why I might not want to go into nursing. However, I have heard that a lot of it is "all in the head" and that I can train myself not to be so bothered/affected by it, and I think that if I want this badly enough, I should go through with it.

    Plus, I am kind of unsure how others might react to me wanting to be a nurse because a lot of people know that I have a fairly weak stomach. My two older sisters are nurses though, so I am sure that they would help me and be supportive/understanding of this. I just don't know how people might react. (I don't even know why I am worrying about that in the first place.)

    What does everyone else think? Thank-you so much for any input.
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  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   RNfromMN
    The best- not one of the best - the BEST nursing student in our class almost passed out in her operating room rotation. This girl gets the best grades, has excellent bedside manner and has the most varied experience dealing with all kinds of patient care. She just can't handle the OR.

    If you really wanna gut-check, though, go get a job at a nursing home. I remember when I was first trained in as a certified nursing assistant, I was a little squeamish, too, but when you're following around a busy senior CNA that's training you in, you almost don't have time to worry about the gross-factor...you're trying to make a good first impression. When she says, "Go pick up that dirty diaper and toss it with the linens!" you just do it. I remember they told me in training that after working as a CNA for a while, I'd be "eating a my lunch in one hand and changing a poopy diaper with the other." And that was pretty much right on the money

    Maybe before you go running out to get a job, though, go through all the forums here and read a lot of the stories. Save the forum entitled, "What's the Grossest Thing You've Ever Come Across?" (or something like that) for the end, though.

    I should also mention, that if you decide to pursue your bachelor's degree right away, you could go straight from school to a very well-paying desk job in the nursing field.
    Good Luck!
  4. by   Larry77
    "Blood and needles" are really only a small portion of what nursing is about. If you were to say that you can't stand to work with people then I would be worried about you becoming a nurse. We all have issues with being "grossed out" but we get passed them.

    The other day I was helping a nauseated pt out of their puke filled clothes with the help of a very seasoned ED nurse who was gagging and choking over the odor. I just softly chuckled at her and went about my business. See puke/vomit is her "issue" but not mine...me it's those nasty private regions on those 400lb + patients....yikers!
  5. by   BSNtobe2009
    I think that is normal...that is one of the major reasons that I want to go to work in the NICU..for some reason, when it's babies, it's different. I have never got sick watching a baby throw up and diapers and baby poop doesn't bother me. Watching surgery on TV doesn't bother me and I would give anything to see a live one. I am wondering if my lifetime obsession with slasher movies has desensitized me toward blood and the like? I don't have a problem with needles and even as a child I had to watch the needle go in or else it felt like it hurt more.

    I am, however, concerned about nursing school because I know I have to learn how to do all of this on adults before I can get a job working with babies. I am just going to try to remember that it's training, it's going to be for 2 years, and there will be an end to it.

    You are not alone.
  6. by   melissabobissa
    This is absolutely wonderful advice! Thank-you so much everyone!

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