Child psych. nursing

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    Hello- I'd like some info on nursing in child psych. What are the majority of diagnoses you see? Do you do a lot of behavioral therapy and teaching working in this area? It seems like it would be very rewarding to work in this area, and very sad too. Could any of you working in child psych give me some insight? Any information would be appreciated. Thanks!

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  2. 3 Comments...

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    Quote from 5thflrnurse
    Hello- I'd like some info on nursing in child psych. What are the majority of diagnoses you see? Do you do a lot of behavioral therapy and teaching working in this area? It seems like it would be very rewarding to work in this area, and very sad too. Could any of you working in child psych give me some insight? Any information would be appreciated. Thanks!
    hi, I have been working in child psych for 5 years as a mental health counselor and residential supervisor. I absolutely love it, and the only reason im going into nursing is that a counselor position doesnt pay and there is not much room for growth aside from your own personal growth. I have worked with kids diagnosed with autism, aspergers, adhd, bipolar disorder, schizoprenia, ptsd....just to name a few. Honestly, i dont pay much attention to dianoses in kids because most of them are rule out, and child psych diagnosis is not as clear cut as with adults. We use a lot of behavior management techniques. I suggest you working as a floor staff or observing a psych unit or residential program for a while before getting a job as a nurse. I think the best psych nurses feel comfortable with their population and are able to really get involved with their patients to help them through crises. Its not just about passing meds, which is a common misconception. It takes a lot of creativity to be a psych nurse because you are constantly trying new approaches to deescalate a patient in order to avoid restraints. I once worked with a child who could snap out of a crisis if we provided him with certain smells, deoderant, perfume etc. Hope this helps!
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    What age group are you planning to work with? I work mostly with Adolescents (12- 17). Yes it can be very rewarding, as well as frustrating. With adolescents we see a lot of ADHD, BIPOLAR, CONDUCT DISORDER. Many of our patients are more behavioral, but we get a fair amount of psychotic patients. With Children it is similar from what I have seen.
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    I currently work on a residential program for kids age 8-18 diagnosed primarily with PDD and autism. It makes things interesting having such a wide age bracket, but the kids are all developmentally delayed to some degree. Right now im planning a Halloween party and organizing activities for the younger and the older kids. In general, we use more simple directives and short-term consequences for the younger kids and do a lot more verbal deescalization and have more involved behavior plans for the older kids. Most of the kids have additional diagnoses in addition to PDD/autism. I see more differences in kids according to their diagnosis/family background and cognitive age than i do according to biological age. Are you looking to work with a different population? Or, in a different setting like residential program vs. locked unit, short-term vs. long-term? I definitely want to work with children and adolescents in a hospital setting. I am working as a student nurse aid with adults on a telemetry floor and i know its not for me. I also work as an aid on 2 rehab floors having kids on vents, with trachs, g-tube feeds, brain injuries, paralyzed etc. and i also enjoy that because there is a lot of psych involved with kids having to deal with long-term injuries. Im currently dealing with the dilemma of should i work in med-surg first before psych? Id like to do both med-surg and psych with kids at the same time so im looking for a hospital that has both.


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