I loved the ICU at night. I had enough time and quietness to critically think about my pts diagnoses. I just recently realized I cannot work nights any longer for my health's sake. I am a little frightened to try dayshift ICU.
I work nights in the ICU...love it. I work with a great group...and I am not afraid to wake up a doc. It gives me the time to look a little further into my patients. Less road trips..although we still do them.
Night shift ICU. More codes/traumas and you get to be more involved in everything because there are less people. Codes during the day have 50 people show up. At night we have maybe 6. You get better at taking care of things yourself and knowing what is important enough to call about and what can wait. I think you can just become a better nurse.
Night shift in the ER! Always too busy to be tired, too busy to think about sleep, but that is where all the good stories come from...nights in the ER!!
Thats when the wierdos come out, the shootings and stabbings are usually after dark, the drunks and the druggies, the ball game incidents, the traumas, and of course, last but not least.....the foreign bodies in places they are not designed to be!
Ah yes, that is what I live for! Too bad stupidity isn't painful....but I guess sometimes it is.
I have worked night shift as a case manager at a hospital, on a busy acute medical floor with vents, and of course the prn job at the nursing home. Of those, the best was working at the nursing home on night shift. That's when you have the stories and the sundowners takes effect. However, you need eyes in the back of your head to care for those 60 residents, and the morning med pass at 0530 is horrible! When I worked M/S, night shift was a great place to be as a new gradute. More time to learn valuable skills and more autonomy than day shift. The masses are in bed asleep! I always enjoyed when the day shifters came in looking so misserable at 0645 and I had a big smile on my face because I was going home soon. (I am not a morning person at all!)
Night shift on L&D!
Neither babies nor uteruses (uteri?) can tell time so it's just as likely to be busy as days, but docs don't like to be up all night so you have a lot more autonomy in managing labor, working with the mom without the doc wanting to intervene to hurry things along. They generally want to be awakened just in time to put on the gloves and catch. And when I tell the occasional "in house doc" to "go get some rest and I'll call you" they actually think I'm being nice to them! I can take the time to teach and work with the breastfeeding moms in the small hours of the morning before the majority of the hordes of visitors show up.
ICU at night can be challenging because they do more admissions at night. It seems that day shift transfers the patients out and night shift admits(generally trauma from the ER).
ICU is also covered by residents "cross-covering". The doctor you call with patient issues does not know the patients well, and too often have a "bandaid" approach to problems.
When I took AP1 lecture, my teacher said that nurses that work night shifts are usually larger than nurses who work day shifts because the metabolism stops at 8:00pm. Is this true? Has anyone ever noticed that?
With circadian rhythms, your body may slow a bit a night, but since we aren't asleep but up and moving about it really isn't a factor. I do tend to get cold around 4 AM or so, but not when we're busy; only if its one of those rare nights it slows down in the ER. But am I fatter for it? :chuckle:chuckle:chuckle
One more myth of days vs. nights. Must be I'm fatter cause I sit around all night eating bonbons while my patients sleep angellicly.
To the OP: nights in the ER rock. No suits wanting to focus on "administrative" details, just focusing on the patients.
Cardiac surgeon happened to be inhouse late one night, when a stabbing vic came in. He sewed up the holes in the heart right there in the ER, guy survived.