someone tell me it gets better after RN school??? - page 4

by rnintwo

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Im half way through my 1st semester of 4 and Im hating nursing school! Is this normal??? For one, our clinicals are being done in LTC rehab and I HATE it. Bed sores and bed baths, incontinent patients, feces and urine everywhere,... Read More


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    Quote from rnintwo
    Im half way through my 1st semester of 4 and Im hating nursing school! Is this normal??? For one, our clinicals are being done in LTC rehab and I HATE it. Bed sores and bed baths, incontinent patients, feces and urine everywhere, It was all I could do not to have an anxiety attack right there. Its not that I dont empathize with these patients, I do, but If this is what my job is going to be about when I graduate then I dont think I want to graduate. Im hoping that someone will tell me that LTC is where you see the worst part of the job and that there are other areas I can go into that dont deal with these issues. Im sorry but cleaning up someone else's feces and urine and bathing their genitals and whatnot is disgusting and Im not ashamed to admit that. Alot of the students try to pretend like they have no issue with it whatsoever but I think thats a load of baloney and they just dont want to admit that bc its 'taboo' for a nurse of all people to think such a thing much less say it out loud (as if we're saints). We are nurses and yes we care but come one, be real, some of the things nurses have to do is gross! SO, I would like to know, does this sound like a normal reaction to the beginning of nursing school or am I looking at a job that Im going to hate??

    I'm getting ready to start CNA clinicals next semester to go on to my nursing program. I am fully aware that I'll be knee deep in all forms of excrement. Honestly, I have no idea how I'll react. I know part of my is screaming the very things you are, but I also work as a vet tech and every day I go home with feces, blood, urine, ear wax...... ... on my scrubs.

    What I've learned? It's all mental and in your head. So just as there is a loud screaming part of you that says "This could not be ANY grosser!" There is the rational part of you that knows how to do a job, zone out the gross stuff, and enjoy the fact that you are contributing positively to the world.

    If you can't find that part of your noggin, and you can't find a way to zone out your gut reactions, than yes... I would imagine you are going into the wrong field.
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    Beside that it takes some time to get used to it, it really opened my eyes about being old one day and on the receiving end.
    It is hard to imagine though when you are just in your 20's.
    Lovely_RN and Altra like this.
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    Quote from Barbara Hessinger
    Beside that it takes some time to get used to it, it really opened my eyes about being old one day and on the receiving end.
    It is hard to imagine though when you are just in your 20's.
    This happend to me as well, during my clinicals in LTC, I actually saw my life flash before my eyes. I looked at allthe pictures that were on the wall of my residents when they were young and then I looked at the old frail person lying in front of me needing my help. I saw that one day I could be in that same position. Then one of my residents asked if I was "happy" I said yes and she seemed pleased. She said "good becuse you need to enjoy it now becuase before you know it, you might end up confused and relying on other people for everything and it will feel like it all passed you by in the blink of an eye".
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    Quote from biblepoet
    I agree rectal tubes are the worst.
    Personally, I love rectal tubes! Well, "love" may be too strong of a word. I would much rather mark a line on the outside of a self contained bag the amount of smelly green C Diff poop than have to worry about constantly cleaning it out of the skin folds of my poor bed bound pt. Soooo much better for all parties involved!

    If you try and remember that these body fluids are coming out of a human being who has feelings and probably would rather not suffer the humiliation of having to have a total stranger expose them, roll them over, wipe every crease may help. Thats the way I try to approach the subject.

    Nursing means nursing the whole person, body fluids and all...
    Fiona59, April, RN, Purple_Scrubs, and 1 other like this.
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    Quote from SlightlyMental_RN
    Ha, no. Unless you also want to clean up the feces that's been smeared in their hair while they're delusional. Or have someone going through DTs wave their penis at you like a sword, while trying to bat you away, all the time you're trying to administer an IM injection. Seriously--all true.
    Seriously, LOL
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    Quote from rnintwo
    my thinking going into nursing was to be a plastic surgery or derma nurse. Ive also toyed with the idea of maternity. Do these sound like they would be a better fit?
    If you don't like poop, pee, vomit and genitals, then I would advise you NOT to get into "maternity"
    Fiona59, Trubie, BabyRN2Be, and 1 other like this.
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    I am not saying this to be mean at all but I really don't think you will like nursing. As a currently pregnant woman I can tell you right now to run fast from maternity - all of my coworkers are delighting in telling me their terrible, icky labor stories and they are really grossing me out. Actually, being pregnant in general is kind of grossing me out, I am just looking forward to the baby. L & D can be nasty with the best of them, IMO. I feel you, I really do. Poop, pee, etc. is yucky and I don't like dealing with it either. If you don't think you can ever get used to it, though, you really should not waste anymore of your valuable time and money in nursing school. Good luck to you.
    Fiona59 likes this.
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    "I guess those labiaplasty procedures are out ..."


    kool-aide, RN likes this.
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    Quote from PACNWNURSING
    Just do what most want to be nurses do to avoid those aspects of adult care, head to NICU, just kidding... With the current and future market the LTC maybe your only choice upon graduation. Really it is all about attitude, this is the reality of nursing, the choice is yours.
    Hahaha! NICU gets pretty gross sometimes, if you can't stomach blood, feces, and the like...With nec and perforations comes ostomies...I tend to get tons of those, which I don't mind. You get used to it, I guess...except for the super prolapsed ones. Shudderrrr...Still, it's all about making the baby comfortable. If it means tons of diaper changes, changing leaking ostomy bags, and all that good stuff, I'll do it - I hate leaving my babies dirty and miserable.

    OP, the job market is hard these days, especially in NY where you are - LTC may be one of the only things you can get into straight away. You may not always have a CNA, so you will have to come to terms with your feelings in regards to performing patient hygiene and dealing with some less than fun tasks. Like others said, it's a great way to assess and make sure your patient's needs are met. It's all about having a positive attitude when doing these things.
    Fiona59 likes this.
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    If this is how you truly feel, I don't think you deserved to get that coveted seat in your nursing program.
    Uncool. You owe the OP an apology.

    I graduate in May, and, although I didn't ever have to do LTC in nursing school, I did have to deal with some pretty nasty poo. My first day, I nearly puked cleaning up a patient. Does that make me a bad nurse? Nope. I don't think so.

    You get used to it, honestly. And after the first semester, your clinicals tend to get better. I've been lucky in that our clinical instructors will advocate for us students. They don't allow us to just be in the hospital to do the work the nurses don't want to do or don't have time to do. We're there to LEARN, and there's not much to cleaning up poop and emesis--You can probably figure all that out on your own! I've been to several hospitals in my area, and it's never been an issue, except once and my instructor nipped that one in the bud.

    Don't lose heart. Stick it out just a bit longer and see if it doesn't get better.

    By the way, I think the plastic surgery route or the dermatology nurse would be great. Operating room nurses do such a different job than floor nurses. I venture to say that poop in the OR is an exception rather than the rule. Same with dermatology.


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