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Night Shifters - Am I being too sensitive?

Nurses   (17,547 Views 52 Comments)
by val421 val421 (Member) Member

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I am constantly shushing people on my unit. I can literally hear their conversations, word for word, from patients' rooms at the far end of the hallway. Housekeeping also shows up at about 5AM and they scream back and forth to each other like they're out extremely hard of hearing.

I don't consider myself particularly sensitive to noise, but it's excessive. There are often sleeping patients that I would rather not wake up. Not only for their comfort, but for my own.

I'm too direct to complain to management. I just deal with it as it happens. It only works for about ten minutes, though ....then the party is back on.

I've actually shushed people involuntarily before! I'm not as direct as I'd like to be, but I was so irritated once by someone entering the room and laughing while trying to ask me a question that I turned and hissed "Shhh!" before I could stop myself. I quickly explained that I didn't want to wake the (previously very agitated) patient and was just changing an IV bag and that I'd talk to her outside. :banghead:

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52 Posts; 1,736 Profile Views

if I had to face the number of disruptions during my conjugals with the Sandman

You have sex with the sandman? And you would do so in a hospital room?

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190 Posts; 1,474 Profile Views

I totally understand that for several reasons. I would sometimes have to work in the very early morning hours at the skilled nursing facility. I would get there at 6 am and patients were not even up and the doors were locked. I had to be quiet so I did not wake anyone up because in order to get to the unit that I needed to get to, I had to go into a unit where people were still sleeping. So, I spoke in a quiet voice and I tried really hard to be respectful. I made it down the stairs to the other unit in time. I believe the nurse was doing a good job in telling the staff to be quieter because at night, you are doing your nursing checks on all of the patients and doing some charting as well. So, it is busy, but not as busy as the day shift. I believe that being quieter on the unit for the patients just gives them a sense that the nurse cares for there well-being and wants them to feel comfortable. Therefore, being quiet while they sleep helps them feel better and gets the healing process going faster as well. Thank you. Marcy CNA

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When I worked at a long term care facility, we had a resident who was very noisy throughout the night and bothered her two roommates. She was easily heard in the nearby nurses station. We discussed this and it occurred to me that maybe she was being encouraged by the conversations and other incidental noise provided by the group of CNAs who congregated in the hallway "corner" just outside the door to this room. While the problem was not completely solved, the resident quieted down considerably, when the CNA hangout was changed to a different location. Sometimes things can be improved by talking about the problem and brainstorming for solutions.

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190 Posts; 1,474 Profile Views

I have a wonderful friend whom I have known as a teenager. We went to the same University and we also were in the same nursing school program. When she graduated from the program, she worked as a staff nurse and then moved to the L and D floor (Labor and Delivery floor). She works the night shift and loves it very much.

Edited by Silverdragon102
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....thanks to attitudes like this. But I disagree that it is not possible. I have worked in 2 hospitals where *most* staff appreciated the time of night/morning and made a clear effort to be quiet. It makes a huge difference.

On a side note, they were both pediatric hospitals, one being an ICU. Maybe that made the difference, but if it can be done there, it can be done anywhere. It's simply a change of attitude.

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190 Posts; 1,474 Profile Views

Night shift work is always challenging, but for the most part it is because it is during the time that most people are sleeping. It is important to always keep an open mind and always look out for each other while the team works overnight. I can remember signing something when I worked at the assisted living facility saying that I would not sleep on duty. I thought that was interesting at the time, but now I know that it is necessary. I am grateful that they do it. Night shift workers do a great job and they are wonderful people.

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190 Posts; 1,474 Profile Views

I had another friend who worked while I was in the skilled nursing facility and she told me that she worked mostly the night shift in the nursing home. She also said that she had her bridal shower at 3 am with the other co-workers. She said that it was very special because they were eating cake and a meal at 3 am and having a perfectly good time during that time of the morning. She told me that she liked working night shift because the work load was a lot easier, but still had things to do. It was totally different than the day shift which she did work after she got married. Night shift can be a really good shift for many workers; especially when the staff arranges parties at 3 am for you.

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190 Posts; 1,474 Profile Views

I have never worked the 11 pm to 7 am nigh shift before and now I could not do that because I take medication at night that makes me sleepy, cannot drive any vehicles, and my critical thinking would not be as sharp while I take this particular medication during the night. I have gotten up at 4:30 am and had to drive and be at work at around 6:15-6:30 am and it was very dark; especially in the winter months. For the most part, it is very quiet around that time of the day. The noise level was for the most part very quiet. I only had one incident where there was an emergency and I was helping the nurse out with the emergency at that particular time. Other than that, it was typically very quiet. I wish that I could work the night shift because it generally is a lot quieter.

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190 Posts; 1,474 Profile Views

The night shift is a hard thing because of the following reasons:

1. The workers have to work all night while people are sleeping.

2. The workers have to sleep during the day in order to stay awake at night.

3. The workers have to adjust to not sleeping all night which can be done.

I thank those nurses who work the night shift and have worked it for many years.

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190 Posts; 1,474 Profile Views

The night shift can be a hard shift in that you have to work all night long (from 7 pm to 7 am) without sleeping at all. The easier aspect of the night shift is that there are usually no meals to serve; only snacks and whatever the registered dietary person has for the patient's diet. I had a friend who always worked the night shift and she said that one night before she got married, she had a baby shower at 3 am from her co-workers. She said that was a special aspect of working the night shift.

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190 Posts; 1,474 Profile Views

Nurses who work the night shift are a true gift in my thinking for these reasons:

1. They have to work while most people are sleeping.

2. They sleep during the day in order to give night care to patients.

3. Their bodies have to adjust to the change in work habits of staying up all night.

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