Thoughts of a Student Nurse

  1. 0
    When asked what area of nursing I want to be in, I always reply pediatrics. I love working with children and the thought of brightening their experience at the "doctor's" attracts me to this area. I often think of downsides to other areas where I know for a fact I do not want to work (geriatrics for example), but really only the positives of where I want to end up. I know there have to be downsides to pediatrics, but what are they really? I know children may be more difficult to communicate with and may not be cooperative, but what are the negatives to working in pediatrics?
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  4. 11 Comments so far...

  5. 2
    Well it can be very difficult for a new grad to get a job in pediatrics right out of school. So I would look at all areas of nursing as a place you could potentially be working, including geriatrics since as a new grad you may end up working there
    poppycat and NutmeggeRN like this.
  6. 5
    The negatives is not the patients themselves but the social background. I have recently just taken care of way too many NATs.
    There will be stories that break your heart.
    You will see NATs
    You will see uninvolved parents.
    You will see the social system (CPS/DHS) fail children.
    Children are great to take care of....many times they have amazing families but then there are those that you leave believing that there should be a test to take before people can become parents
  7. 7
    Child abuse, addicted babies, childhood cancer, children dying. Pediatrics isn't always rosy and happy.
    PedRN86, Surprised1, NutmeggeRN, and 4 others like this.
  8. 10
    Parents.
    MedicalPartisan, Luckyyou, KelRN215, and 7 others like this.
  9. 4
    1. Having to discharge a great kid to home -- and to a lousy, abusive family.
    2. Having other nurses think your job is easier because the patients are smaller and often "cute"
    3. Having people in general think your specialty is easier and that peds nurses aren't as intelligent, etc. because "it's just like being a Mom." You'd be surprised how many people think that what the average mother does is the same thing as being a peds nurse
    Esme12, poppycat, SoldierNurse22, and 1 other like this.
  10. 4
    Quote from llg

    1. Having to discharge a great kid to home -- and to a lousy, abusive family.
    2. Having other nurses think your job is easier because the patients are smaller and often "cute" 3. Having people in general think your specialty is easier and that peds nurses aren't as intelligent, etc. because "it's just like being a Mom."
    You'd be surprised how many people think that what the average mother does is the same thing as being a peds nurse
    Well said, as well as the other posters.

    Being that most of my nursing career has been in pediatrics, it can be the most stressful experience in nursing, because it is NOT easier, children are NOT "little adults", they decline faster than adults, so you have to be quick on your feet, and be knowledgable to what is going on, even for the "expert parents".

    Once one is aware and can be prepared of the challenges, the challenges can bring the positives.

    You can think HOLY.... when it's hitting the fan and you don't know if this child is going to make it through, or the family is just more dramatic than your favorite soap opera, or when you see a child experience PTSD after a medical trauma; you may want to run out of there...or you stay and nurse.
    Esme12, poppycat, motherof3sons, and 1 other like this.
  11. 3
    Children with chronic conditions. Type 1 diabetes is difficult enough for an adult to understand and manage; tiny bodies need 1/2 units of insulin, constant monitoring, vigilance (I don't know how those parents do it, honestly).
    Other conditions are life-limiting, like cystic fibrosis. Working with teens that have a life expectancy only into their 20's was eye-opening for me.
    NutmeggeRN, Esme12, and poppycat like this.
  12. 0
    Quote from hey_suz
    Children with chronic conditions. Type 1 diabetes is difficult enough for an adult to understand and manage; tiny bodies need 1/2 units of insulin, constant monitoring, vigilance (I don't know how those parents do it, honestly).
    Other conditions are life-limiting, like cystic fibrosis. Working with teens that have a life expectancy only into their 20's was eye-opening for me.
    I actually enjoy taking care of pediatric diabetics, as unlike the vast majority of other illnesses we see that can have complications, I always instilled in family's that if you follow the diet and treatment plan provided, diabetes doesn't have to be a death sentence
  13. 2
    Quote from LoveMyBugs
    The negatives is not the patients themselves but the social background. I have recently just taken care of way too many NATs.
    There will be stories that break your heart.
    You will see NATs
    You will see uninvolved parents.
    You will see the social system (CPS/DHS) fail children.
    Children are great to take care of....many times they have amazing families but then there are those that you leave believing that there should be a test to take before people can become parents
    Ding, we have a winner. About 10% of my caseload currently have open cases with CPS and there are several more that are heading that way. I had one patient (who I currently do not follow for reasons that are too complicated to get into here) who was the worst case of medical neglect I've ever seen. CPS wasn't concerned because the apartment was clean the last time they did a home visit. Literally, this kid wasn't being fed or given his meds (and was seizing because of non-therapeutic drug levels) and they couldn't have cared less.

    I have another kid now whose mother is trying to steal his Make-A-Wish and use it as a free vacation for herself.

    The most obvious negative in my line of work is that many of these kids die. And they suffer before they die.
    LadyFree28 and poppycat like this.


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