Is night shift easier?.....

  1. I'm an rn student (6 mos. to go) i can't see myself dealing w/ the total chaos of the day shift floor for very long after graduation? is night shift more tolerable ....pace/choas wise? or is it just as crazy!

    during my clinicals staff & students are running around like chickens w/ their heads cut off......does this sound like night shift also, NOT including an emergency?

    i figure if i can't stand floor nursing i could get a year in at least and do home health, but a year of day shift might kill me! HELP, is night shift better or am i kidding myself? (I have multiple sclerosis & literally can't stand the pace!)
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    About RN1263

    Joined: Mar '03; Posts: 487; Likes: 103


  3. by   rn/writer
    I've always chosen to work nights for the very reasons you mention. Some units keep pretty busy throughout the night--critical care comes to mind. And L&D and postpartum--the babies can't tell time. But for the most part, even on the busier units, you aren't trying to do your job in the middle of a freeway.

    If your body can adjust to nocturnal hours, night shift is great. I personally can't handle days.

    Good luck to you.
    Last edit by rn/writer on Nov 14, '06
  4. by   texas_lvn
    :wink2: I choose nights because of the differential pay. It makes it worth it.
  5. by   weesyanne
    The pace of nights is usually easier, but not always. I like it better because all the big wigs and higher ups are generally not around so that you are free to do your job without all the chaos that occurs on day shift.

    I also love the camaraderie of night shifts. We are all in the same boat, sometimes fighting to stay awake. It makes us all pull together and work as a team. I love, love, love my fellow night shift workers!:kiss I don't usually go around kissing them like the smiley faces indicate, however!
  6. by   GregCP, RN
    Quote from texas_lvn
    :wink2: I choose nights because of the differential pay. It makes it worth it.
    Hell, if they paid more on days, I still wouldnt do it....i feel your pain. I never liked days. I think its because Im such a zombie, first thing in teh morning. I prefer nights because you do have time to think, take a break, and go at your own pace. Granted, it depends what floor you work, like L & D or peds (which I'm in), however universally, Nights are more tolerable than days (if you can get used to sleeping in the daytime).
  7. by   EmerNurse
    I LOVE working nights and on a med-surg floor it was usually somewhat less chaotic, if only because Administration wasn't present and the docs weren't usually around either.

    Now I work Night ER and THAT is a different story. Day shift folks seem to have time to have breakfast, lunch, snack, whatever. Sure when they come in, night shift has all but emptied out the ER, which must help. But when Night Shift comes in - HELLOOO! Full Beds, full waiting room, and they just keep coming and coming. In ER, nightshift is the BUSIER shift usually - I've never worked so hard in my life! And I love my job, even on the bad nights.

  8. by   am17sg05
    i think it depends on the area where you are going to work.i work night shift when i was in er and it is more busy than telemetry and psych,it is more quiet during nights;less people(staff and visitors) and pts more or less just's more of paperworks and you just have to wake them up for meds and vital signs.i also had the chance to do home health as personal care time was flexible although it involved a lot of driving.goodluck to you!
  9. by   RN1263
    thanks to all who replied!
    i use to be an E.R. tech/E.M.T. (long time ago) and i THOUGHT i wanted to do E.R. as a nurse....NOoooo, can't stand the pace now!

    So, instead of giving up on nursing all together, i've had to look into other options. So, if i can think straight on nights (med/surg) w/ out a zillion people barking at me and having to fight for a tiny area by the pixus to draw up a medication, then maybe i can get a year in on nights (med/surg) at least before moving on to something else, then that's what i'll do. hope i won't have to orient on days?????

    like i said i'm not done w/ school yet, but i'm the type that needs to think ahead or i feel lost......i need that "game plan".
  10. by   AtlantaRN
    It depends on what you consider easy.

    Normally, less family at bedside, no doctors rounding for the most part so no pages of new orders to implement...No management with their clipboards trying to drive the floor nurses stark raving mad....I like it because although you may have more patients to care for, you really have MORE time with your patients because you aren't dealing with pages of new orders...

  11. by   RN1263
    Quote from AtlantaRN
    It depends on what you consider easy.

    i consider easier to be.....
    an overall slower pace, the pts. not asking for 1/2 a dozen things everytime i walk in the room, having time at the pixus/med cart w/ out other nurses trying to run me over (literally) every single time, & other things like that. don't get me wrong i want to stay busy, but i don't want to be CRAZY busy running around like a chicken w/ it's head cut off!

    just from what everyone has already mentioned i think it would be better....
    are there less meds to pass also???
  12. by   NurseyBaby'05
    Last edit by NurseyBaby'05 on Oct 9, '06 : Reason: Butchered my thoughts. . . .
  13. by   NurseyBaby'05
    Night shift can be crazy too. You have fewer resources overall; which means a lot of things that ancillary staff throughout the hospital usually do fall on the nurse. You're doing your own orders. You are often correcting things that were missed in the last twenty-four hours when you redline. It takes a lot longer to get ahold of people/departments and when they do finally call back, you better be waiting by the phone b/c it will be a long time before they call you again. It's not like days and evenings when you can leave the info with the charge nurse or secretary and they can relay it for you. Don't get me wrong. I love my nights, but many times people think it will be a cakewalk "because all the patients are sleeping."
  14. by   hotshot05
    I suppose it really depends on the facility/unit. I work on cardiac/tele floor. I've been RN about 7 months now on nights. The more comfortable/confident/faster I get the better. Most nights aren't too bad. However, on my floor we get A LOT of admissions on nights because all chest painers, stable cardiac patients come to our floor. We have a house secretary so we just call them when we get admits and they do all the orders for us.
    I couldn't imagine starting on days and being a new nurse. It's chaotic after 630am when the docs come in early and you have to wait to finish up am charting. I would be too paranoid on days that I would miss new orders.
    Nights- has a little more charting to do, check MARs, carry over plan of care, 24 hour checks and evals.
    Good luck and congrats on almost being done!