I am currently majoring in biology, but I've been considering switching to the nursing program, as I've always wanted to work in a hospital. I'm pretty squeamish, not good with handling vomit, poop, or stress and I'm pretty quiet. My biggest fear is that these attributes will translate into me being a bad nurse. Does stress management and an iron stomach develop over time? Is there anyone who knows where I could shadow a nurse for a day?
Dec 19, '17
Read this.......if you can make it through to the end then you're half way there! =0)
Dec 20, '17
You do have to be able to handle those things, but it also does come with time. I remember being in block 1 and seeing some really nasty pressure ulcers in the book thinking to myself "oh my god, if I ever saw that in person I might faint!" But in clinical I actually saw wounds MUCH worse and to my surprise, there was no ick factor to it for me. Quite the opposite, it actually fascinated me!!
So you do need to be able to handle the gross stuff, but plenty of people go into nursing thinking they can't and they end up just fine. I would just really evaluate your reasons for wanting to be a nurse. and if those are strong enough for you, go for it.
Dec 20, '17
I think only you can answer that for yourself. I would try to become a CNA first because you will deal with a lot of "ick" that way, and build a tolerance. You will constantly deal with poop, vomit, and stress so make sure you can tolerate these things. You don't have to love them, just tolerate them. You could also try to shadow a nurse. I really do not like vomit, in fact, I used to have a phobia of vomiting as a child. But constant exposure has made me more comfortable with it, although at the end of the day nobody likes puke! I'm also quiet, and I don't think you need to be the life of the party. You just need to be able to communicate with patients and make them as comfortable as possible.
Dec 21, '17
I'm pretty lucky - I'm not fazed by "gross" stuff in general, although I do get a bit "gagged" at boogers. I was working in a store one time, and a guy cam in obviously drunk, but he had two enormous stringy, slimy, boogers hanging out of both nostrils. I kid you not, these things were at least a foot long each, and they were swinging around. Every time he sniffed them up, they would rise up a bit then wobble back down again.....now, that did make me gag a bit!
I think for me, for the most part the sight is not the problem, it is the smells....and that can be remedied by using a face mask and a blob of Vicks inside to breath in!
Dec 22, '17
I used to have a complex about mucous. I now work in the ICU, where mucous abounds. Exposure therapy is great!
I think only you can make that decision...with that said, I think everyone is squeamish towards something, its just a matter if they can overcome their "fear" or not. I personally think feet are nasty and absolutely hate them...but am totally fine with puke, feces, blood and the rest. Will I have to see feet in my career? Sure. Will I survive? Sure. I like the comment above in regards to getting your CNA first and "trying it out". You can obtain your CNA in as little as a few weeks to a semester, then could work a day or two a week in a hospital or long term care facility to see if you truly will be ok. You can also contact a medical facility near you and volunteer. I volunteered at my local hospital and saw a multitude of "gross" things. Good luck!!
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