I have been considering a career in nursing but I have become a little scared! For quite a few reasons, one that I won't be any good and two my biggest reason (which
seems to be making me doubt the decision completely), is that I won't be able to handle the trauma in even minor emergency cases.
My question to any one with some advice is really to know if that's normal and if even
successful nurses felt uncomfortable when they first started, or if it is a sure sign that the job is not for me.
Jan 2, '01
First of all, I do think what you are feeling is normal. There is a lot of nervousness regarding codes/trauma etc. One of the reasons we go to school is to develop skills AND confidence regarding these skills.
One thing that may help you is to be certified as a nurse aide or pt care tech (do they have these in Canada?) and work- you will develop a lot of confidence in working with patients and certian skills.
I am a relatively new nurse, working in ICU- I still occasionally feel entirely overwhelmed by my patients, yup you're normal! Good Luck!!!
Jan 3, '01
I agree with hollykate...it is through your education that you will need the skills you'll need and then of course when you are actually working, you will sharpen many of these skills.
I feel the same as you do and I decided to take an EMT basic course so that I would have a little bit more control of my anxieties. I'm hoping to start the nursing program next fall and I'm currently taking two college courses (prereqs) and the EMT basic. I will use the EMT course to get a position on one of the floors as a ward secretary.
Jan 3, '01
Thanks to both who replied to my posting!
I'm very new at using this so excuse me if it's not correct!
It's really great to be able to speak to people who can actually assure my fears from either experience or true knowledge...I really appriciate it!
I also am doing some upgrading (prereqs) for the Nursing program, but as I mentioned in my original posting I just became afraid I was doing the wrong thing. Mostly because, honestly and I don't know how to write this without ignorance, I am still afraid I won't be able to handle extreme blood, gore, serious wounds! I just hope when I'm there it won't be an issue but I don't know that because I've never been there... Well sorry I made this so long and thanks again for the support and advice, Best of luck to you all as well!
Jan 3, '01
Medell- I was much like you before I became a nurse, afraid of the wounds and gore. I had never even watched a horror movie or any violent scenes in a movie.
I found looking at pictures of wounds in textbooks helped "desensitize" me along with dissection in A&P. Now I find that when I'm working on a wound, I see it and not the person it belongs to.
On a positive note- usually real severe wounds do not cause pain to the person when you are changing the dressings.
On a personal note- I've worked with some incredible wounds (a person eaten by a street sweeper, a person dragged 5 miles by a car, guillatine amputations, and quite a few more) and I now do not care to eat or even shop for beef because it reminds me too much of people, and certain patients in particular. But, what the heck- not eating beef is better for you, right?
Jan 3, '01
I just had to post again. Yes, I have also seen some horrifiying wounds/gore- haivng worked ED pretty much showed me everything. BUT, have no fear, if you are overly queasy about wounds/and blood and gore, there is a lot of nursing that does not involve it- so if you go through nursing school
and feel ill everytime you do wound care, pick a job that involves less wound care than more. Do not worry about horror stories, while they exist, it is not everyday (well, that does depend on where you work). Good Luck.
Jan 3, '01
Once again thanks for the support and sharing the personal experiences withg me...
It really has helped my confidence with choosing to become a Nurse. I'm supposed to register by Jan.31, which is why I came to seek advice from the people who have been there or feel the same way. I know I said it before but I am really appriciative to all who have responded.
I just have one more question if your willing to give me a better idea, can you suggest other appropriate sections of nursing?
It's nice that you all have such positive intakes, Thanks again!
Jan 3, '01
Right away I think of Oncology or geriatric nursing- A lot of people think there is no challenge in geriatrics, but I think it is one place where your assessment skills have to be really really sharp, a little bit of a UTI can make an elderly patient seem totally deranged. If you are more interested in Children, there is always School nursing and MD office nursing. One of my classmates is a nurse at a school for developmentally delayed children. She hadnles all sorts of things, tube feedings, multiple meds, and all sorts of medications.
As you go through school, you will experience all sorts of different things-through your clinical rotations. You might even find that you actually LIKE the trauma, don't sell yourself short this early int he game. Give me an email if you want to talk more! (just click on the mail icon near my name.) Best wishes with registration and classes, you'll do great.
Jan 4, '01
I feel the same as you do. I have to send in my application for next fall's ADN program and I'm tossing between hoping to get accepted and having them tell me to wait another semester (I'm still working on some prereqs which will be completed by fall but they have to take those students who have already completed their prereqs). I do hope that I am accepted.
I've been trying to desensitize myself by watching some of the Learning Channels medical shows and I'm taking an EMT basic course as I feel that learning what to do during an emergency lessens some of the anxiety of the unknown.
Jan 4, '01
Iwant2banurse; I also face the chance of not being accepted, but I've got my fingers crossed and I'll keep them that way for you to. Funny you should mention that you've been using the Learning channel, I've been trying the same thing in hopes that it would help! I don't find it bothers me a lot on TV.
I'm more afraid of how I'll react when it's real, as I'm sure you are to! If you read the message posted earlier by Ruth, it's exactly her experiences that I've been fearing and imagining... All these responses have been so helpful and uplifting, I don't think I'm going to give up and I'm really glad I know have people to conversate with if need be. Thanks
HollyKate, I may take you up on your chat, Thanks for your help and the continuing offer!
Jan 5, '01
Oh dear Medell! My intention was not to scare you further but to say that I had the same exact fears and to share with you how I dealt with them prior to ever seeing a real wound. And guess what? I actually did far worse with emptying my first commode than I did with my first deep decube! (Hint: never breathe in while bending and emptying a full commode or bedpan) I was sooo green!
Nursing is wonderful and there are so many things you can do, you'll love it!
Jan 5, '01
Have you considered volunteering at one of your hospitals? I had recently volunteered in our emergency room and was asked to help hold a patient's head while they put in an IV in the jugular vein. She was only responsive to pain (severe diabetes) and they needed two gentle hands to hold her for a couple of minutes. It is amazing the power of touch...between that and how the nurses were, push me more towards working towards my degree.
Jan 5, '01
Yes, you will be scared at first. When you are in school, your hands will shake and you will have butterflies in your stomach all the time. But truth be told, you will not be alone at first. It is normal to be nervous and everyone will know and remember what it was like for them when they were new. But keep in mind that as you do things over and over, it will be a job to you because you will be use to it. This is how EMT's, firemen, policemen and nurses are able to cope. --they get use to situations-- You will not be scared of the situation ........ what you really will be afraid of is the unknown. For this, is the true fear factor. But as things happen and you remember what to do, it will be just another day at the office for you .....
anneliese, RN http://caring4you.net
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