Preparing for first psych job



I have been working on a med-surg floor for the past 6 years, and have just found out that I will be getting my long-asked-for transfer to the psych floor. Unfortunately, I am woefully unprepared. Aside from dusting off my old textbooks, are there any suggestions for the most helpful ways to prepare for this job? Any texts or online resources that would be most helpful?

Thank you!


10 Posts

Specializes in Psych. Has 20+ years experience.

Well, if working as an RN I would say get to know the meds really well....that's mostly what you'll be doing. groups are usually run by the health techs/aides... unless it's a med group. they'll train you on stuff like restraints. hopefully you'll have some large male type people working there. get to know how to to deal with axis 2 stuff and PTSD. you'll get a lot of substance abusers and they often have these diagnosis'. learn about triangulation, setting good boundaries, etc. don't forget that's it's not just the patients that create difficult dynamics.....:)

Specializes in Critical Care, Med-Surg, Psych, Geri, LTC, Tele,.

Read up on tardive diskinesia and other Extra pyramidal symptoms. Know you basic med classes: anxiolytics vs antipsychotics and mood stabilizers. Learn about the different side effects of first generation antipsychotics vs the new antipsychotics such as clozaril, invega sustenna and abilify maintenna.

If you're not well versed on therapeutic communication nor a naturally empathetic person, learn about this.

Learn about axis 1 vs axis 2. (I'm still working on differentiating the different axises)