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Have Anxiety, Should I go to ED?

Nurse Beth   (299 Views 5 Comments)
by Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Advice Column) Writer Innovator Expert

Nurse Beth has 30 years experience as a MSN and works as a Nursing Professional Development Specialist.

14 Followers; 88 Articles; 226,270 Visitors; 1,755 Posts

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Dear Nurse Beth,

To make it short and sweet, I have had anxiety In nursing school and in my first two years as a nurse. ( I went directly into psychiatric nursing, I have no medical experience. I think a lot of the anxiety comes from not knowing all of the interventions during an emergency ( we have them in psych but they are uncommon). I was thinking of applying to an ER to get exposed to more medical situations. Do you think someone like me with anxiety would be able to do well in an ER setting? Any advice for me?

Dear Anxious,

I'm sorry you're having anxiety. Anxiety can be incredibly uncomfortable and even paralyzing. Occasional anxiety is normal, for example, feeling anxious before a test. But experiencing anxiety over a long period can indicate a medical disorder. Anxiety and depression often go hand-in-hand.

Have you seen a doctor to get a diagnosis and treatment?

Your anxiety is likely to get worse if your stress increases, such as starting a challenging new position. I would focus on the anxiety first and then think about changing specialities if you are still unhappy in behavioral health.

Best wishes, 

Nurse Beth

Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!

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Emergent has 25 years experience and works as a Emergency Room RN.

6 Followers; 2 Articles; 63,549 Visitors; 2,696 Posts

ED is a very unpredictable specialty. I don't think it's the best choice for an anxious person. 

We have an anxious guy in our ED. He's never really settled in even after 2 or 3 years. I don't think it's where he belongs. 

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mimibrown has 4 years experience.

1,108 Visitors; 37 Posts

I have anxiety, but I handle it pretty well at work. When I'm having one of those days, I try to take a few extra short breaks to just breathe. It also helps to remember that you just have to make it to the end of shift. 

If you are looking to get into acute care, I would recommend med surg. You will be able to develop a routine and learn new skills. ED might be too overwhelming without strong assessment skills and the ability to think and work quickly. 

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1 hour ago, Emergent said:

ED is a very unpredictable specialty. I don't think it's the best choice for an anxious person. 

We have an anxious guy in our ED. He's never really settled in even after 2 or 3 years. I don't think it's where he belongs. 

 

1 hour ago, Nurse Beth said:

Dear Nurse Beth,

To make it short and sweet, I have had anxiety In nursing school and in my first two years as a nurse. ( I went directly into psychiatric nursing, I have no medical experience. I think a lot of the anxiety comes from not knowing all of the interventions during an emergency ( we have them in psych but they are uncommon). I was thinking of applying to an ER to get exposed to more medical situations. Do you think someone like me with anxiety would be able to do well in an ER setting? Any advice for me?

Dear Anxious,

I'm sorry you're having anxiety. Anxiety can be incredibly uncomfortable and even paralyzing. Occasional anxiety is normal, for example, feeling anxious before a test. But experiencing anxiety over a long period can indicate a medical disorder. Anxiety and depression often go hand-in-hand.

Have you seen a doctor to get a diagnosis and treatment?

Your anxiety is likely to get worse if your stress increases, such as starting a challenging new position. I would focus on the anxiety first and then think about changing specialities if you are still unhappy in behavioral health.

Best wishes, 

Nurse Beth

Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!

Yes, I do have GAD and MDD. It’s not that I am unhappy with behavioral health though, I just think I would be able to build more confidence if i was exposed to more medical situations. I am going to look into med surg/ Something slower paced so I can build up skills. I guess the ED would be too much for me right now. 

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35 Visitors; 2 Posts

1 hour ago, mimibrown said:

I have anxiety, but I handle it pretty well at work. When I'm having one of those days, I try to take a few extra short breaks to just breathe. It also helps to remember that you just have to make it to the end of shift. 

If you are looking to get into acute care, I would recommend med surg. You will be able to develop a routine and learn new skills. ED might be too overwhelming without strong assessment skills and the ability to think and work quickly. 

I hear you. I think you have a good point. 

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