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LilaDavis's Latest Activity

  1. I know that all interactions between nurses and patients can be therapeutic, but I mean specifically targeted psychotherapy - CBT, ACT, DBT, etc. My background is in clinical counseling but I'm also interested in nursing. Is there a way to combine the two? Do psych NPs do much in terms of therapy or is it more medication management? I can't seem to find a consensus on this. What are your experiences? Thanks!
  2. LilaDavis

    SUNY Downstate & online prereqs

    Hi everyone, I'm hoping to apply to an ASBN program but have a few science pre-reqs to complete first (A&P and Micro). Unfortunately I'm living in South America for the next year, meaning 0% chance of finding an in-person class and lab. I've tried e-mailing a few programs to see if they'll accept online pre-reqs, since that means I can at least be productive for the next year. Downstate e-mailed me back and said that although they'd prefer in-person, they'll "consider" online classes. Should I basically take that as a no? I don't want to screw my chances of being accepted anywhere, but I also don't want to sit around for a year! Has anyone managed to get into any NY schools with online prereqs?
  3. Hello, I've been working in mental health for about 10 years now as a counselor. Throughout I'd say the last 3 years I've been seriously considering making the move to nursing, particularly psychiatric nursing. I really enjoy working an inpatient/hospital setting and I like the idea of being involved in all aspects of a patient's care. I also like the idea that if I ever feel I need to get away from mental health, I might be able to find a job in a completely different nursing speciality, whereas as a counselor I feel a bit like I'm working in mental health for life. That being said, I'm worried about how much therapeutic time I might have working as a nurse. I'm sure it's highly dependent on your unit, how busy it is, etc but for example I'm guessing I won't be sitting down and doing 1:1 DBT/CBT/ACT sessions with clients anymore. I'm a little nervous I'll miss doing therapy or that my job will mostly be medication management, which I don't want. Has anybody else made the jump from counseling/therapy to nursing? Am I blowing this out of proportion?
  4. LilaDavis

    Acute in patient psych gowns vs street clothes

    I completely agree with those who answered before me about it being degrading, humiliating and unnecessary for patients. There needs to be a balance between safety and dignity which I understand is difficult to strike, but I don't see how forcing patients to wear hospital gowns is needed. I guess it depends on the purpose of your unit - if it's literally to just keep them alive, then it makes sense to strip people of anything that could be used as a weapon or a ligature (although a hospital gown could also be used). But if you want to be more person centred and recovery focused, I think hospital gowns are the wrong idea completely. Of course you're wanting to get someone through a crisis and stay alive, but you're also not wanting them to come back - allowing them their street clothes and some personal affects I think is both comforting and keeps people connected to the fact that they're a human with a life outside hospital.
  5. Unit is the wrong word, but I couldn't think of another! Maybe site? Area, etc. You get the idea :) Basically, as a psychiatric nurse, where are you working? What's the environment like, how much time do you get to spend with your patients, how therapeutic do you find it? I'm currently working on an acute unit in the UK but moving to America, and wondering what sort of place would be best to look into. Reading some of the posts here has me a little concerned with how restrictive some places seem to be. I'm genuinely not sure if this is a cultural difference or it just depends on which kind of location you work in? Our unit is far from perfect (like, FAR ha) but I'd say I enjoy our ward. Patients wear their normal street clothes, they're allowed personal items, room searches are only conducted when there's a suspicion of drugs/weapons or when a patient has been deemed a risk to themselves/others. Patients eat with regular cutlery, make their own hot drinks and are allowed headphones/razors/other risk items within reason, though they need to sign them back into the office when done using them. We have regular groups running and patients typically get 1:1 time with a member of staff on each shift, if they want it. We're a 17 bed unit, mixed genders. We go through peaks and troughs; at the moment it's quite calm, but toward the end of last year we had a horrible few months of having half our patients on enhanced observations, seclusion, assaults, etc. We do of course have a lot of people come in with self-harming/suicidal behaviours and violent tendencies anyway, but these tend to be addressed on an individual basis rather than with blanket enforcement of rules. I'm a bit worried that I'm too soft to come to America, and work in a place that is maybe more restrictive to patients. Although I understand the safety aspect (having been punched in the face yesterday, lol), some of the posts seem to describe places that are more prison-like and less person centred or therapeutic. Anyway I've rambled on enough so please tell me where you work and what it's like :)
  6. LilaDavis

    What is it with the "I love going green" thought

    Hello :) I've only worked in psych a few years but I've never heard the term 'going green.' As for hands on, do they mean restraint or possibly just getting more involved in therapeutic work? The nurses on my unit generally get inundated with admissions/discharge paperwork, meds, risk assessments, care plans etc and I know they really revel in the opportunities to be "hands on" doing therapeutic work - having protected time with patients, leading groups, that sort of thing that is normally done by techs on our ward. From your post though it sounds like 'hands on' is referring to restraints or physically handling patients? I don't think I've ever heard someone say they enjoy that aspect of the job. It's definitely necessary at times and I could see feeling proud for a job well done, or keeping the patient/others safe, administering needed medication etc. But I wouldn't go as far as saying I'd look forward to it, and I'd worry somewhat about the motivation of someone who does. A less disturbing explanation could be that they enjoy the adrenaline rush. I've definitely experienced that - it's more like getting hyped up and ready to jump into action which can be exciting. Maybe it's not about enjoying putting their hands on patients (red flag) so much as getting a rush from flexing their emergency muscles and getting experience? I'm just rambling now :) I'm sure someone else has a better explanation!
  7. Hello :) I'm considering making the jump from being a trained counselor to a psychiatric nurse but if I'm honest, I don't fully understand my reasons for it. Something is drawing me to it - I love working in an acute hospital setting, mental health is my passion and I want to make a difference, but that's about it! I assume that for those of you who chose psychiatric nursing rather than another nursing speciality, you did so because you wanted to work in mental health and perhaps in a therapeutic way rather than doing strictly medical care (if that makes sense). So in this way I guess I'm curious, what is it about psychiatric *nursing* rather than being a psychologist or a counselor that you prefer? I know the jobs are very different so I'm trying to get a good understanding. Thank you!
  8. I can't believe I'm even writing this but here goes. Over the last few weeks I've found myself really attracted to one of our male patients. He's been on the ward for a couple months now for recurrent depression. Physically he's good looking and only slightly older than me. I think part of the attraction also comes from the fact that (obviously outside of our setting) he would be my type (the dark brooding musician thing). I think this attraction basically started when after a few weeks of being with us, he smiled and laughed during one of our talks and something just sparked I guess. That being said I'm horrified by myself. Never, ever would I act on this attraction, violate my standards or his trust. But I can't help it, I feel like I've developed a little crush on the guy. I'm not worried about my behavior as I always keep it professional, but mentally this is screwing with me. has this happened to any others working in a psych unit? How do you make it go away? What is wrong with me?
  9. Hi guys! I'm looking into Suffolk's associates degree program for nursing and I'm really confused by what I'm reading.. So from what I understand, SCC offers a day and evening program, 4-6 semesters and these programs include Microbio, A&P 1+2, Intro Psych, Sociology, etc. I've seen people posting in the other threads about already having taken all these classes before they apply but don't you just need to take them again? I already have a Bachelor's so I've taken a lot of the core classes (psychology, sociology, chemistry, humanities, english, math, etc) and I was put off by the idea of doing a 2 year degree where I'm having to retake a lot of these classes. Can you do the suffolk degree without having to repeat that stuff, as in my psych/chemistry/sociology/english credits would transfer? Any info would be great :) Thanks!
  10. I will fully admit I am currently taking chemistry and hating it. I have an A at the moment but very likely this will turn into a B (hopefully!!) by the time I finish. i absolutely understand and respect that chemistry is required and I understand it's important for medical professionals. But which topics are the most relevant? i find I can understand some core concepts, but I am REALLY struggling with things like thermochemistry, stoichiometry, calculating the heat of formation and enthalpy of reaction etc. How important are those particular concepts? I feel like I'm going to be an awful nursing student!
  11. LilaDavis

    Staff appreciation ideas?

    Hi all, I'm working on an inpatient psych unit and it's a tale as old as time - staff are feeling burnt out, stressed, and underappreciated. There are larger organizational issues that need addressing (which other people are looking at), but I want to focus on staff appreciation. Our nurses and assistants work so hard and put up with so much, only to get a "thank you" e-mail maybe twice a year. As psychiatric staff yourself, what would YOU like to receive in terms of management showing you're appreciated and valued? Ideally I'd love to be able to give people an extra vacation day or a half day off etc, but our hospital is government run and I have very little leeway that way. There is also the idea of bringing in food, buying lunch for staff etc. Someone also floated the idea of a regular newsletter highlighting progress on our ward and any staff who have "gone the extra mile" but I want to make sure our ideas don't come off as patronizing to anyone. So guys, what would make you feel acknowledged, appreciated, etc? That is feasible to do on a busy inpatient ward?
  12. Hope this doesn't cause any offense as this is the area I'd most love to work in. I suppose when I think of psychiatric nursing it's primarily in-patient (but I know this isn't the case). With more emphasis being placed on community care, do you think there will still be room for the nurses who want to work in acute inpatient settings? Where I am now there's a big push toward community treatment/crisis 'cafes'/day centres in order to keep people OUT of hospital as much as possible, which I wholeheartedly agree with. But these programs seem to be staffed primarily by psychologists and techs. At the same time I'm sure there will always be those too ill to be nursed at home. I think I just worry sometimes about the outlook. What are your thoughts?
  13. LilaDavis

    ABSN programs??

    Hello, I've been researching ABSN programs in NJ but I'm curious to hear from people who have enrolled/graduated. I'm not from New Jersey and am not familiar with the schools there or their reputations, but it's looking likely I'll have to search there due to my husband's job moving. I've looked into Rutgers, Felician and one other so far that I can't remember the name of, but any personal experiences would be appreciated!
  14. LilaDavis

    ABSNs in New Jersey?

    Hello, I've been researching ABSN programs in NJ but I'm curious to hear from people who have enrolled/graduated. I'm not from New Jersey and am not familiar with the schools there or their reputations, but it's looking likely I'll have to search there due to my husband's job moving. I've looked into Rutgers, Felician and one other so far that I can't remember the name of, but any personal experiences would be appreciated! :)
  15. LilaDavis

    Does an accelerated program really prepare you?

    Thank you both for the replies, much appreciated! I definitely anticipate it being stressful and intense, I feel alright (slightly scared) about that aspect but I do think ABSN would fit my needs better. So as long as they're equal in clinical/class hours then that's great!
  16. Hi everyone! Probably stupid question ahead... I'm looking into my options at the moment and I'd like some feedback from people who have done ABSN programs. I already have a BA and if possible I'd like to avoid doing a full 4 year BSN for obvious reasons! I found a couple of 2 year programs (which assume you've already completed the first 2 years of Gen Ed stuff). But I also have some concerns about doing an ABSN - is a 12-16 month program comparable to the 2-4 year programs? Do you get the same amount of information, clinicals, etc? Or is it just too much cramming it all in? Those who've done ABSN programs did you feel it fully prepared you to enter the nursing profession? Thanks!