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Is Nursing as Stressful as Nursing School?

Nurses   (25,593 Views | 84 Replies)

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TheCommuter has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych.

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Would an LPN have less stress than an RN?
I am an RN who was previously an LPN for 4 years.

The LPN role is physically, emotionally, and socially stressful. On the other hand, the RN role is physically, emotionally, socially, and politically stressful due to the increased liability. Both types of nursing are stressful, but being an RN involves even more aggravation because the buck stops with me.

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Nurse Mommy has 1+ years experience and specializes in Geriatrics, Death & Dying.

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Nursing as a profession is WAY more stressful than school, in my opinion.

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casi has 3 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in LTC.

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I think that nursing vs nursing student stress is a very different kind of stress. I found actual nursing a kind of relief after nursing school. I no longer had to pull looooong nights at home cramming information or writing out perfect care plans.

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samadams8 has 20+ years experience and specializes in Peds and Adult Critical Care.

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Well, I am a critical care nurse and nursing for me is MORE stressful than nursing school. It's alot of pressure. In clinicals for nursing school, I wasn't the one ultimately responsible for that pt and I got to leave after 8 hrs. Now I'm there for 12 hrs and I am the one who has to answer for what has/hasn't been done. Don't get me wrong though, I LOVE my job!! I guess it's really just a different type of stress.
^ this.As to your original question....rotflol...You ain't seen nothing yet. It gets better in some ways and a lot worse in others. Really um, I feel the same as the quote above.

If you totally dislike the whole package, the process will not have been worth it after your feet are really held to the fire. If you end up really liking what you do, you will endure the foot branding... But some stuff really puts a damper on it all --after a while the nonsense gets old--even if you really like what you do.

You will just have to wait and see if the branding ends up being worth it for you.

Seriously, the best.

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nursecheryl specializes in inpatient hospice house.

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I'd say the amount of stress is about the same. The reason for the stress is a little different. In nursing school the stress was related to the grades and making it through clinical, now the stress is related to patients lives, comfort and safety. Making it through nursing school was the most important thing in my life at the time, now the most important thing while I'm working anyway is my patient. But now, when my 8 hours are over I try to go home and let it all go. When I was in nursing school i had a harder time letting it go.

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Hygiene Queen specializes in ......

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what types of nursing are less stressful and which types are more?

Much of it depends on the person, as to which type is "easy".

And when I say "easy", I have to cough a wee bit into my hanky, because there really isn't an "easy" nursing job.

There may be many different areas, but it is the very nature of what a nurse does-- period-- that makes it stressful.

Personally, I think Psych is comparatively easy to Med-Surg.

But that's because my personality and interests make it a good fit for me.

It is not stress free and I still have to deal with all the things other nurses do, because, like I said, it is the nature of what nurses do that make it stressful.

Other nurses thrive in the ICU... which is universally recognized as not for babies!

I would not touch their job with a 10ft pole... and you would not want me to.

However, some of those same nurses, who deal with the delicate balance of life and death every day... would go running and screaming from my Geri-Psych unit.

So when I think of "easy", what I really am thinking is "good fit".

"Easy" does not really exist, be it Psych, Home Health, ER, LTC, etc. etc.

What you want to look for is what you are truly interested in.

What subjects can you read about for hours, just because you like them?

What diseases, problems, situations, etc. compel you to want to learn more?

What types of pts do you like to interact with and how much do you want to interact?

You will have more satisfaction if you have a real passion or true interest in what you do.

While it won't be stress free, I do believe the positive of being in an area of great interest will make that stress more bearable and manageable... a good fit.

Don't look for "easy", you will be disappointed.

P.S.

OP: I know you didn't say "easy" and I'm not sure why I went off in that direction so much. Sorry, but maybe I should have more coffee in the morning before I post.

Edited by Hygiene Queen

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libran1984 has 4 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in Emergency Nursing.

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During school I had multiple break downs and cried repeatedly due to stress. In 2 years of practice, I've had only one episode that still wasn't on the level I had in school. If I ever don't feel comfortable doing something, I grab a more experienced nurse who assists me. Life is so much more pleasant now.

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61 Posts; 5,819 Profile Views

My calculation is that in nursing school I learned roughly 50% of what I needed to function competently as a nurse. The other 50% I learned in the first 2 years of practice. And so my answer is definitely yes. Take the always-striving-to-learn component, add the pressure (emotional, intellectual, mental and physical) of responsibility for X number of patients for 8-12 hours and well....you get the picture.

^^ In agreement here. Steep learning curve and you never really stop learning. I had a big learning curve this morning and just try to take it all in and become a better nurse.

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132 Posts; 5,157 Profile Views

I graduated this year and started working right after- I strongly agree that working as a new graduate nurse is far more stressful than nursing school. I used to have so much anxiety about checkoffs and getting good grades, but now if I drop the ball then it can directly affect my patient and/or other staff and the facility. Not to mention trying to soak up all of the knowledge that can only be learned out on the floor at the facility, adapting to new shifts/people, and figuring out an organization/time management system that functions well. Even seasoned nurses have been telling me that sometimes they just can't shake the feeling that they forgot something during their shift even though they have been laying in bed with their eyes open for the past six hours and are supposed to be getting some rest.

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Alexis33 has 7 years experience and specializes in leadership, corrections.

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Yes yes and yes.

We have a very high number of closet substance abusers. 6 months ago one of our nurses slashed her wrist and last year when I worked in L& D, one of the nurses commited suicide at home with a gun. No one wants to talk about it. One of my close friends was arrested for intoxication and beating the daylights out of her husband. After she was released from jail, she woke up and I have been going with her to the AA meetings as her support person. We do sooooo much that we get lost sometimes and then we lose ourselves.

FOr those of uswho are in the profession because we care and are advocates, we have to remember it's stressful being a nurse - a different kind of stress. So please take time out for yourselves!

p.s.

I don't ask for time off. I just put in the request and if its denied. I call in. I learned if I dont go because it was denied, I will never get a chance to go. So yes, be good to you.

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joanna73 is a BSN, RN and specializes in geriatrics.

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Nursing school can be stressful because you're learning new concepts. Nursing, on the other hand is more stressful at times because you have actual critical patient scenarios and their families to deal with. I would say the stress depends on the context, and your level of experience. However, I'm very glad I no longer have useless care plans and reflection papers to churn out anymore. My learning is on my time now.

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112 Posts; 5,738 Profile Views

For me it's a different kind of stress. I think it's more stressful on the floor. When I was in nursing school it was stressful for me because I knew that I had a lot riding on whether or not I actually made it through the program. My stress went through phases. First, I stressed about getting in and finances. Once I got in, I stressed about whether or not I was actually going to pass each exam and each semester. Once I got through the program, I stressed about passing my boards. Once I passed the boards, I stressed about being a new grad and becoming competent. Once I got over that, most of the time I was just stressed from the work load, patients, doctors, family members. It's constant anxiety. I can't stop to think. I just have to keep going and going and going.

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