All nurses are NOT holistic, sorry.

  1. People mean well but to be honest, not all nurses are holistic practitioners. I know this because I did not feel very holistic or even "whole" when I worked as a LPN in New York literally shoveling pills into senior citizens mouths. Most of them were not capable of taking care of themselves. In fact the healthiest person there was an elderly indian women who refused to take any pills from me except for the vitamin she would specifically ask for. She still had her mental and physical capabilities. If I could I would go back and thank her for helping to put my on a different path. Holistic nurses practice usually include aromatherapy and herbal knowledge, meditation and spiritually, energy healing and more. Some nurses incorporate some of these and I encourage them to seek more information. Most nurses hands are tied due to bureaucrats, time limits, and policies and procedures in hospitals. So sadly, although people comment that we are all holistic, the time I have spent studying outside of my curriculum from school tells me otherwise.
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   Agnus
    You are correct. In many nursing schools we are taught that we have an obligation to treat the whole person. Body mind spirit and enven address thier sexual issues. In realality this seldom actually happens. At best we give lip service to it and address these issues occasionally or on an hit and miss basis.

    The health care system allows little more. I get a kick out of nurses who check a box on a pt chart that says they taught relaxation techniques or used guided immagery with a pt. Most have no idea what this is or even how to go about it let alone use it or teach it to a pt. The boxes get checked because they are there and you have to check something.

    We learn about relaxation techiniques we learn that guided immagery exist but we do not learn it. It is a skill and it would be like saying you used acupuncture with a pt. We know vaguly a few gereralities about acupuncture but are hardly qualified to do it.

    Yet, we are expected to do those things. So nurses say the do. Afterall charting is everything. Even the pts recognize we spend more time charting than actually careing for them. What a sad sad state of things health care has become.
  4. by   passionflower
    Sad but true. Isn't it ironic that in most nursing schools they give you probably one class on nutrition and don't focus more than that on the subject when we now know that the very way a person eats can cause or resolve health issues. In fact proper nutrition is ground zero in health care, yet we focus on pharmacology. I remember being stressed out in nursing school by all of those drugs and dosages we were responsible to know. Granted these are important to know, I just wish it were more balanced. Could we prevent the problem instead of treating the cause? Sadly, not enough money goes into alternative health because the pharmaceutical company is like the healthcare mafia.
  5. by   Agnus
    Fortunately I had a sound nutrition class under my belt before deciding to go to nursing school. I recall that although my school ranked among the top 1-2% (at that time) of nursing schools in the country it ranked poorly in nutrition when it came to the NLN exam we took to evaluate our readiness for the NCLEX.

    We were told that nutrition was not a course they included because being an associate degree program there was a legal limit on the number of credits that they could require. There was so much that they had to include that something had to be left out and they chose nutrition because they felt they could teach the basics within the nursing classes.

    Even the bachelor program I later enrolled in left out nutrition as a requirement. Though it is listed as an elective on my transscript. Perhaps nursing education has to be restructured entirely.
  6. by   morte
    hmmm nutrition....when i went to nursing school....i think we had a week ie 2 1/2 days of lecture...on the NLN i earned a 99% a classmate 98% and the rest 75 or below....the two of us had extensive outside interest in nutrition, ya think it showed?
  7. by   healingtouchRN
    I had a superb teacher/class in Nutrition in my lower nursing curriculum. Have since taken many more classes with focus on food chemistry, obesity, depression, sleep, caffeine, carbs, & soon I'll take a class called Diabesity. I really believe this is basic to nursing to know what our clients are eating. It is very hard to change a culture or a generation on their belief systems with relationship to their food practices. Small steps is what it takes & alot of understading. I live in the Southeastern USA where fried chicken, grits, ham, greens, potatoes are the standard. This is what the hospital serves it's employees & patients on a regular diet. We have made many requests to our dietary department to request fruit or salad cheese nut plates for our busy staff. They are listening & it's getting better but still room for growth.
  8. by   scholar
    Quote from passionflower
    Sad but true. Isn't it ironic that in most nursing schools they give you probably one class on nutrition and don't focus more than that on the subject when we now know that the very way a person eats can cause or resolve health issues. In fact proper nutrition is ground zero in health care, yet we focus on pharmacology. I remember being stressed out in nursing school by all of those drugs and dosages we were responsible to know. Granted these are important to know, I just wish it were more balanced. Could we prevent the problem instead of treating the cause? Sadly, not enough money goes into alternative health because the pharmaceutical company is like the healthcare mafia.
    There was a senior student nurse who started almost all over b/c she changed her major to nutrition. She realized that she wanted to educate individuals on the prevention of certain issues and not just deal with the sick. She thought of the nurses role as being too late. I just think she couldn't cut it. But there is money in medicine and very little money in using natural products.
  9. by   CharlieRN
    Oddly enough I actually think the nurses at my facility do practice pretty holistic nursing. Not that they are involved in much of what I would term "woo-woo" interventions, but they see the whole person more than the MDs do. In our case, because ours is a psych facility, being holistic involves keeping an eye of the patient's medical status. Since that is not the focus of the attending physician's treatment he/she can miss things. I once had to be very firm with a psychiatrist who wanted to order a medical consult to have a patient seen at the clinic, in a couple days, this for a patient who was having black tarry diarrhea NOW.
  10. by   MAISY, RN-ER
    Just touching people, a back rub with warm blankets, holding a hand, or even hugging an elderly person is a form of Holistic nursing. Time is the enemy in hospitals and elsewhere. Usually overanxious, panic stricken elderly seem to relax if you can spend that 15 minutes with them. I have also found difficult sticks, relax with hand holding and rubbing of the extremity-the patient relaxes, the muscles relax and I am usually successful. Needless to say, many of these mostly sickle cell and hyperemesis patients seek me out with their many trips to ER.

    In addition, there doesn't seem to be many teaching facilities for learning on the east coast. I am interested and believe in Reiki, herbology, and scented infusions. I have seen them work wonders on the oncology floor. I truly believe they have a place amongst the sick in the ER and should be welcomed.

    Maisy
  11. by   healingtouchRN
    Quote from MAISY, RN-ER
    Just touching people, a back rub with warm blankets, holding a hand, or even hugging an elderly person is a form of Holistic nursing. Time is the enemy in hospitals and elsewhere. Usually overanxious, panic stricken elderly seem to relax if you can spend that 15 minutes with them. I have also found difficult sticks, relax with hand holding and rubbing of the extremity-the patient relaxes, the muscles relax and I am usually successful. Needless to say, many of these mostly sickle cell and hyperemesis patients seek me out with their many trips to ER.

    In addition, there doesn't seem to be many teaching facilities for learning on the east coast. I am interested and believe in Reiki, herbology, and scented infusions. I have seen them work wonders on the oncology floor. I truly believe they have a place amongst the sick in the ER and should be welcomed.

    Maisy
    Maisy, you are a blessing! this is the kind of nursing I practice. I would love to see more hospitals recognize aromatherapy (maybe the staff nausea would improve!). I practice Healing Touch as well, a form of energy body work, and an working on my MS in Natural HealthCare & Wellness Counseling. My next course is Herbology. Shall be an adventure!
  12. by   PLTSGT
    Quote from Agnus
    ...I get a kick out of nurses who check a box on a pt chart that says they taught relaxation techniques or used guided immagery with a pt. Most have no idea what this is or even how to go about it let alone use it or teach it to a pt. The boxes get checked because they are there and you have to check something.

    We learn about relaxation techiniques we learn that guided immagery exist but we do not learn it. It is a skill and it would be like saying you used acupuncture with a pt. We know vaguly a few gereralities about acupuncture but are hardly qualified to do it.

    Yet, we are expected to do those things. So nurses say the do. Afterall charting is everything. Even the pts recognize we spend more time charting than actually careing for them. What a sad sad state of things health care has become.

    You speak of truth, my friend.

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