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I need advice about mental health facility

Nurses   (1,104 Views 3 Comments)
by mycafelatte mycafelatte (New Member) New Member

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I am a LVN new grad and I just got hired to work at a mental health facility and Im very excited. Im wondering for those who have worked in a mental health facility can you tell me what I should expect on my orientation, what I should do to be better prepared, and how was your experiences there. any information will be greatly appreciated. thank you.

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2,182 Visitors; 57 Posts

Congratulations on getting a job!:yeah:

I'm not sure how much information or advise I can offer: I'm a Nursing student but I do work at a long term, residential care facility for the mentally ill. In no way do I perform nurse duties, so when I work second shift, I prepare dinner, clean up, and run coffee and snack time. My residents (16 of them) are fairly independent - they can come and go as they please, but they do have to be watched. Honestly, it's kind of like being a babysitter. By no means do I mean that offensively (my residents are awesome) but they do tend to have conflicts with each other and turn small matters into large dramatic instances.

What I already knew, but never really realized, is how rough having a mental illness is. I have some patients that suffer from bi-polar disorder and it's really rough when they are doing really well and are happy for a week, then the next day they just sit in a corner and are miserable. That's pretty hard to deal with. We have a nurse that comes in twice a day to dispense meds and we can relay information back to her about their attitudes and behaviors, but for the most part I found the hardest thing to do was just watch them go from elation to depression.

Oh and of course, a lot of my residents lie and manipulate, so I would definitely watch out for that. I guess that's really all I have to contribute. Sorry if it wasn't what you were looking for but maybe it will help. Congrats again and good luck!!

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