Non compliance

  1. Im a 2nd semester nursing student. How do you deal with people that don't follow medical advice or that don't seem to really want to get better/healthier? I imagine as patients come & go.. You know that if they don't heed the advice given, you did your best. But how do you deal with loved ones that act similarly? I have several family members that still smoke. One has COPD and still smokes! Her diet is awful, never drinks any water & no matter what teachings I offer it seems to just go in one ear & out the other. How do you deal with these situations? Thanks!
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    About delaynenicholson

    Joined: Jul '12; Posts: 1


  3. by   DeBerham
    Move on. Life is far too short to alienate those around you by beating them into submission. Provide information, give recommendations, but ultimately it is their decision to make... not yours.

    I've learned that let go. I have accepted that I only have so much control over others.
  4. by   Jill2Shay
    People have the right to be unhealthy if they want to be. If you've offered advice and help and they decline, you've done all you can do. They're not your responsibility.
  5. by   SaoirseRN
    I like to say that we can only help people if they are willing to help themselves. Expending energy on those who won't help themselves is a wasted effort, no matter how good your intentions are. Save your time for those who are willing. Harsh maybe, but true. You can't force anyone to change.
  6. by   Ackeem
    one of my classmates is over 320lbs her diet is just out of control, my other Bach mates talk to her so does the instructors but she doesn't seem to care so why should i care? now one of my other Bach mates was 168lbs and freaked out when she realized she gain 20lbs over the hoildays, she came to me for advice on how to loose it and i advised her and she lost 10 lbs in 3 weeks. i gues the moral of the story is help those who help themselves.
  7. by   rubato
    I come from a family of unhealthy people, on both sides. I only offer advice when it's asked for. But, it frustrates me. I'm a very healthy person and could really help people learn. They just aren't interested.

    I did jokingly tell my mother once that if she didn't want to take my advice now, she wasn't going to get me to take care of her later in life when it all came back to bite her. I was only half serious.
  8. by   Stephalump
    Have you studied the health behavior change model in school?

    The idea is that you have to meet people where they are on their path to change.

    If a patient/loved one isn't even considering change, all you can do is suggest and leave it be because they aren't "there" yet.

    Then when they do reach the point where they agree that change might be a good thing, you can step in a little more. They aren't really ready to commit or stock up on Nicorette, but they're hopefully on their way.

    I'm not going to go through all the phases Jessie you've probably either studied them or will soon, but the point is...we cannot force change. In fact, we can actually stall it by pushing too hard. As hard as it is when you care about someone, you can only help someone as much as they're helping themselves.

    I've been begging my mother to quit smoking for as long as I can remember. I always joked that I wasn't going to buy a bigger car just so I could haul her oxygen tank around with us. Now after 30 years of smoking, she's finally quit. She could hardly breath and couldn't recover from resp infections in a normal amount of time. It kills me that it may be "too late," but there's nothing I could have done. She had to finally hit her own rock bottom.
  9. by   Jennybrie
    Love them!! Even though you know that they are doing modifiable risks that will lead them to cancer, heart disease, etc. You are there for them regardless of their behavior. Lead by example and as you learn alternatives in school and the education you teach to your patients, practice that education on your family.

    Change = fear to most people. Smoking, drinking, eating fast food is a comfort that takes time and courage to quit. They are in control of their own lives. You can give advice and guide them; provide encouragement and support. Sometimes there is nothing more you can do but at least you tried.