Out of school, forgetting a lot

Posted
by DNTcode DNTcode Member

Hi fellow nurses,

I just wanted to ask you, do you as well feel like with equally gaining experience you equally forgetting knowledge from nursing school?

It crept on me, I even do not know when and how. I did not realized it till recently someone asked me how many vertebrae are there... I had to count for while, and check it as I was not quiet sure if I am right.

Same thing with helping a coworker with her microbiology. Oh, yes, sure, I was pretty good at that.... oh, well, I realized, that beyond there is some lyer, and some bacterias are gram positive and other are negative, could not remember much more. Had to refresh it myself.

On one side I learnt things I never needed in nursing school. Like the usual drug dosages for example, but at the same note, I forgot some really basic things.

So when new grads come, I start feeling like they have to think I am dumb...

Is it just me, and I should do something about it?

smf0903

844 Posts

It's all good. You push back and forget those things you don't use. You can't possibly retain everything, and why would you? I don't work OB...I remember precious little from OB. I know what I use, and sometimes need refreshers on those things I use few and far between :)

AceOfHearts<3

AceOfHearts<3

Specializes in Critical care. 916 Posts

It's not always about knowing everything, but knowing where to find the info.

A family friend is an NP and when I was stressing in A&P about all the little bones and muscles she told me she looks that stuff up sometimes. You can't be expected to know it all.

cleback

cleback

1,381 Posts

Forgetting the A&P and microbiology "trivia"knowledge stuff does not bother me... much. I relearn some things periodically through CE classes and certifying exams and such. It's when the newer nurses tell me about updates in nursing or medical practices that I didn't know about that I feel dumb. Oh well. It's good to learn from them as well as seasoned nurses.

Isakolistic

Isakolistic

62 Posts

It's not always about knowing everything, but knowing where to find the info.

A family friend is an NP and when I was stressing in A&P about all the little bones and muscles she told me she looks that stuff up sometimes. You can't be expected to know it all.

I second this! I recently have been helping out my alma mater as a clinical instructor, and in the few years that I have been a nurse, I was amazed at what I had forgotten. I think it's more important that you know how to find that answer than being able to know it off the top of your head. What you don't use is often forgotten!

amoLucia

amoLucia

Specializes in retired LTC. 7,735 Posts

I don't remember how many feet from the corner I can park my car. Or how many feet from a fire hydrant. Yet I drove all the time and didn't lose any sleep over it.

Have never had any problem, but I know how to look it up if I need to

Disclaimer here: I haven't been driving for a while (by my decision) because medical reasons. But I forgot those distances right after I got my license (like I bet most of y'all have too).

RNOTODAY, BSN, RN

Specializes in NICU, ER, OR. Has 18 years experience. 1,116 Posts

It's not always about knowing everything, but knowing where to find the info.

A family friend is an NP and when I was stressing in A&P about all the little bones and muscles she told me she looks that stuff up sometimes. You can't be expected to know it all.

Exactly!!! " smart " people do not just solely retain info in their heads-- However, KNOWING WHERE to find the info you need, is a very valuable asset of a good RN

Penelope_Pitstop

Penelope_Pitstop, BSN, RN

Has 13 years experience. 2,365 Posts

We have so much information crammed into our heads in school...I highly doubt any one of us can remember everything. I rocked my peds class but eleven years later, forget a good chunk of it (except Wilm's tumor). Besides, the knowledge base and best practice for each field are both constantly evolving.

HurdYou

HurdYou

15 Posts

Yep, feel like that quite a bit. It's in my head most of the time when I think, man, I should know this, and I will google it while I'm charting or look something up in the med book.

I recently had a student nurse every Saturday for like 6 weeks. She would ask me stuff and I felt like I was saying "I don't know" a lot but when I went to ask the more seasoned nurses, they would say they didn't know either so I didn't feel as bad.

I think the days of regurgitating information cease once you pass that NCLEX. The good thing is, there are a million resources out there to help you out. Just make sure you look stuff up before you go into a patients room.