Do you nurses get breaks? - page 2

Do you get lunch breaks, etc? After just reading some of the forums here on allnurses and Echo Herons books I am scared! Some were saying they work 12 hours with no breaks to even take a pee let... Read More

  1. by   LauraF, RN
    This may sound stupid, but here it goes. I wanted to be a nurse ever since I can remember. When I was old enough I volunteered at the local hospital. This really helped. I ran errands and delivered water piddley stuff. But the nurses on that floor taught me so much. They would offer to show me things, teach me how to do things. I will never forget them. We even had one of those beautiful nurses, with the body and the long nails and the make-up and hair in perfect place, but she had a brain too! I then got my CNA and have continued to take steps in the direction I wanted to go.
  2. by   LPNtoBSNstudent
    You will learn the art of multitasking and planning ahead in order to insure your break time!! Of course, it doesn't always work but most of the time it does for me. Maybe not a full 30 minutes but usually enough to eat and go pee. However, there ARE those days. I've never worked anywhere that I could actually leave the premises so I always bring my lunch. You will certainly be busy though. And as far as your friend at 6 months post graduation...well, I remember feeling that way after I completed my LPN, up to 1-2 years post graduation (I don't think everyone takes that long to get organized). For me, it was because I was overwhelmed and really didn't realize what I was getting into. I had to learn to be MUCH more organized and how to multitask better. I think everyone does?? It is a big culture shock and eye opener (getting out of nursing school) Don't let it scare you away. Good luck!
  3. by   SmilingBluEyes
    OK--"just keeping it real here": There are shifts where I have finished after nearly 13 hours and to my horror, realized I had neither pee'd nor taken but a few sips of water.........yes it DOES happen at times and to say otherwise is simply not true. But if it is like this for EVERY shift you work, it may be time to MOVE on! You have to look out for you, after all, cause no one else will.
  4. by   nessa1982
    Smokers get more breaks yes I have seen that...but not just in nursing (I'm a student BTW) but I've also seen this in other jobs, oh sure I someitmes got all hypoglycemic on th ejob but smokers sure they got smoke breaks ....grrrr...nothing against smokers..but why do they get extra breaks????anyway......I think breaks just depend on how busy you are..sometimes as a student I get so busy or sidetrakced (by new tasks I want to do or whatnot) that I forget to take a break and onder why I'm so stinking hungry and feel funny
  5. by   marilynmom
    Ok I feel better now that you all have responded. Basically it depends on where you work right? And your time management, organization, etc I really appreciate your honest input on this cause I was getting worried about getting burned out with constant work and no breaks. I guess its just important to make sure you are doing what you enjoy or you will never last. The money certainly isn't enought to keep anyone motivated I am sure....here ne RNs only make $15.50-$16 an hour.

    Marilyn
  6. by   Barb(Old Biddy)
    Marilyn, get a day shift job if you want your lunch and break. They never miss at my hospital.
  7. by   Flynurse
    Always take my breaks, even if I shave a couple minutes off...you wouldn't want to be one less nurse because I passed out, would you?

  8. by   lucianne
    What is this "break" thing you speak of? Is it what you do when you want to be sure that all he!! will "break" loose on your unit? Two kids in seclusions or holds one of which needs an IM PRN and a flock of relatives at the door bringing in all kinds of contraband and an irate parent on the phone insisting on speaking with The Nurse....
    luci
  9. by   cokie
    am typing with one hand......breaks....yes....but only the dinner break, not the 15's. as far as the 30, i don't wear a watch and i don't watch the clock. some days my dinner break is short like 10 minutes, and some days it is an hour. at my med-surg job we have a very strong union. if you know that you are too busy to take your dinner break, you are to call the ns, and they will pay two hours of overtime for missed breaks. if they can make it possible for you to get a dinner break, they will....i do see some of the new grads missing their dinners, but i didn't even when i was a new grad....not too long ago either,2000.......don't let all the complaining get you down......some people like to complain....this site lets us complain..........have a great thursday...i know i will.....
  10. by   Jayne LPN
    BUT WHERE I WORK, CARDIAC STEP DOWN...THE ONLY NURSES THAT SEEM TO GET BREAKS AT LEAST EVERY HOUR ARE THE SMOKERS. ALSO, AS THE NIGHT GOES ON THEIR BREAKS GET LONGER....SO BY 7:30 THEY HAVE HAD MAYBE 2 AND A HALF HOURS OFF THE FLOOR....AND THE NON SMOKERS (THAT WOULD BE ME ) GET LUCKY ENOUGH TO HAVE ENOUGH TIME TO TAKE A PEE PEE BREAK...AND EAT SOMETHING IN BETWEEN THE CALL LIGHTS GOING OFF, OR AN IV NEEDING LOOKED AT........OH, AND TO TOP IT ALL OFF......IF THE NON-SMOKER DOES DECIDE TO GET OFF THE FLOOR FOR MAYBE 15 MINUTES TO GET SOME FRESH AIR.......YOU GET THE LOOK OF A THOUSAND DEATHS FROM ALL THE SMOKERS..........SO YES IT IS AS BAD AS WHAT YOU HAVE HEARD........ THANKS FOR LETTING ME VENT
  11. by   altomga
    Originally posted by Jayne LPN
    BUT WHERE I WORK, CARDIAC STEP DOWN...THE ONLY NURSES THAT SEEM TO GET BREAKS AT LEAST EVERY HOUR ARE THE SMOKERS. ALSO, AS THE NIGHT GOES ON THEIR BREAKS GET LONGER....SO BY 7:30 THEY HAVE HAD MAYBE 2 AND A HALF HOURS OFF THE FLOOR....AND THE NON SMOKERS (THAT WOULD BE ME ) GET LUCKY ENOUGH TO HAVE ENOUGH TIME TO TAKE A PEE PEE BREAK...AND EAT SOMETHING IN BETWEEN THE CALL LIGHTS GOING OFF, OR AN IV NEEDING LOOKED AT........OH, AND TO TOP IT ALL OFF......IF THE NON-SMOKER DOES DECIDE TO GET OFF THE FLOOR FOR MAYBE 15 MINUTES TO GET SOME FRESH AIR.......YOU GET THE LOOK OF A THOUSAND DEATHS FROM ALL THE SMOKERS..........SO YES IT IS AS BAD AS WHAT YOU HAVE HEARD........ THANKS FOR LETTING ME VENT

    I can certainly understand your frustration if the "smokers" on your floor take more breaks than others.
    Let me just say as a smoker myself. Yes I take breaks if time allows (we are allowed 2 15min and 30min meal)....
    BUT..I also try to get the non-smokers to step off the floor for a mental break, fresh air,,,,clear their head of all the beeps and whistles!!! I am the permanent charge and also offer to watch their pt's for them to do this. I can not help they defer the break.. instead they take 1hr for lunch if they want...
    It doesn't matter to me...but I try to ensure that every staff member gets breaks...we need them for sanity purposes!!!
    Try this..take a "smoke break", but just stand there and relax...for 5min?? let a NA answer the call bell. Ignore the smokers that give you the "look of a thousand deaths"...just simply tell them "I'M TAKING MY "SMOKE" BREAK"
    Good luck..and I am sorry that you don't have courtesous smokers...
  12. by   alwaysthere
    I havent gotten to the point where i tell my co-workers im going to go pretend to be a smoker now..and i will step off the floor... usually outsde and just breath the freah air for about five minutes....i do this about twice a night...especially if we are running wild...i need my sanity just as much as the rest of them...
  13. by   ScarlettRN
    I have to say, the best thing for someone who wants to go into nursing to do is to get a job as a tech. Nursing is nursing. The tech work is the basic primary work of any nurse who is at a bedside, so being familiar with the practice will make you a better nurse. Or it will prove to you that you don't wanna do this kind of job.
    As for breaks, I have always secheduled myself mentally so that if I am a good nurse and get all my beginning of the shift stuff done, I can walk away for about 5 minutes around 10 then eat lunch around 12 and then take another break around 3. I keep this schedule as close a as possible, because if I don't get to walk away, my brain will explode.
    BTW, I smoke too, but even I see some smokers take advantage and go out too many times. If, at the end of the day, my patients are happy and clean and quiet, I have taken my nurses notes outside to the picnic table and charted while smoking, but the way the floor was set up, all someone had to do was knock on the window for me to come back up if it was something I needed to take care of.

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