I agree with the last 2 comments above. I have worked at the State Hospital (obviously psych) for 5+ years and graduated in Dec. 11' with my ADN. At first, it was difficult for anyone to call me for an interview in a medical field, and I was getting frustrated, cuz let's face it, if you work psych for a period of time you will get easily irritable and burn out! Finally, after 6 months I stared getting calls for ER positions, L & D positions, and Med Surg positions I applied for. They were offering me jobs left and right. ( Keep in mind I've been in psych for 5 yrs and a CNA before then) I was a total believer that if I didn't get out of the psych field I would lose everything I dreamed of going to school for. ER gets SOOOO many psych cases, they actually benefit from someone with experience since a seasoned psych nurse knows how to handle a manic, grandiose pt that comes to the ER thinking he's Obama and recites the Bible with his eyes closed. Every field has psych related somehow. Depression, anxiety, you name it. I decided to stay in psych and I absolutely love it. Just remember, anyone can say they worked in ICU, Med/Surg, Neuro, ER, OR, or whatever field, but how many can say they survived years in psych? Not many. It takes a special person to work in this field. PLUS, the pay is so much nicer, and working for the State offers way better benefits.
For the " you don't use it you lose it" part: I've removed countless sutures and staples, removed IV's that "medical nurses" forgot to take out, responded to many codes for cardiac arrests, seizures, anaphylactic reactions, you name it, I've pretty much done it. The only lacking part is IV's. I am not trying to talk down about any other field, but no one single person can say they've handled a day in psych AND survived until they dealt with a borderline pt cutting themself and leaving a blood trail up the hall, a person detoxing off whatever drug they were using with a CIWA score of over 20 and b/p thru the roof among other withdraw symptoms, 4 admissions, a man who thinks he is Jesus and "saving" all the other pts for their sins, a pt whose blood sugar dropped thru the basement and gotta get it back up ASAP, and then convincing the old man that the person whom he is speaking with is just his reflection in the window, and not his boss. ( these are all examples btw...)
So if you wanna try psych, go for it. Don't let anyone elses opinion make you choose otherwise. You won't if you like it til you try it! Every day is unpredictable in psych. Mental health is just as important as medical health!