My name is Elizabeth and I am new to the group. I am a former special education teacher passionately interested in pursuing nursing as a second career. I worked with students with health impairments and enjoyed the nursing-type tasks of learning trachea care, activities of daily living, g-tube feedings, med management, etc. I felt I was good at it and good in an emergency. I have been interested passionately about applying to nursing school
The problem is I have an anxiety disorder. Is it possible to be a successful nurse with an anxiety disorder? I can handle emergencies, procedures, and bodily fluids but get anxious with fast pace and conflict that may arrive with patients families and coworkers. I have made a lot of progress over the years with therapy and medication but wonder if it to its enough. I am good in an emergency but often crash and burn after the fact. I have random physical panic attacks that I am working of getting under control. I am also passionate about helping the sick, advancements in medical care and helping individuals get through tough situations. If feel like if it were not for the anxiety I would make a good nurse. Are there other nurses with anxiety disorders out there? How are you coping? Is it possible to be a successful nurse while fighting anxiety or is it best to give up on this dream? Thanks for your advice!
Apr 12, '17
Elizabeth, I am also new to allnurses. I think people who have anxiety can be great nurses, but just like all things involving anxiety, it makes things a little more complicated. I actually got diagnosed with anxiety while I was going through nursing school and truly learned what ambiguous "anxiety" was for the first time. But, I have been able to work through it!
I found that it took a lot of trial and error (and learning experiences) to find ways for me to not become overwhelmed and panicked with school and work. I had to be on medication during nursing school and in the beginning of my career but now only as needed. I am still anxious before every shift (especially the first four hours of my shift). When I was orienting, I was having a difficult time with time-management and not being overwhelmed with one of my main preceptor until I got paired (last minute) with another nurse who also had anxiety and it was the best thing that could have happened to me as a new grad. She was just able to explain to me what she does and how she handles certain situations and it helped immensely.
You seem to be very open and willing to work through your anxiety so I have no doubt that you will be able to go through nursing school and your career! That being said, it will be difficult and your anxiety will probably get worse in the beginning but you will be able to work through it as you learn and gain experience. You should do what makes you happy! I wish you the best!
Last edit by Danielle9515 on Apr 12, '17
: Reason: changed words