Jump to content

What surprised you most in nursing school?

Nurses   (4,545 Views | 16 Replies)

jessiern is a BSN, RN and specializes in Med-Surg.

6,199 Profile Views; 611 Posts

When you were a nursing student (or if you still are), what did you learn about nursing that surprised you the most. I was providing a DM patient the other day with patient education, and I recalled how shocked I was to learn "patient education" was a nurse's role. I had always assume the doctor taught the patient about disease process, medications, and ect. I can remember being amazed that a two year degree qualified me to teach ANYONE, much less the person that had to live with a disease. And to this day, I still feel very inadequate in that role. I usually take time to "re-educate" myself on things before going to the patients.

Did any of you experience any thing like this in school? What surprised you most about the nursing role?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Antikigirl has 13 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in Education, Acute, Med/Surg, Tele, etc.

2,595 Posts; 13,458 Profile Views

Oh goodness...I still feel like an idiot on this one. Okay, so I was doing an assessment on a patient and going through the motions...when we got to urination he laughed at me and said my school wasn't doing much to teach me anything...I was quite perplexed..

You see, he is a kidney failure patient and on frequent dialysis...guess at this point SOME people rarely urinate. Okay...why in the world didn't that get discussed in my classes!?!?!? I felt like a simpleton, and knew I lost the nurse/patient relationship right there.

I did thank him for that info, and said I would certainly NEVER forget that little gem!

So remember, some folks on frequent dialysis do not urinate...or do very little. And some I have seen actually fill a foley with no probelm. So keep that in your minds and ask questions accordingly...

Oh...and don't get to flustered over patient education. I do education only on things I KNOW about, and typically they are pretty easy things like lifting limitations, showering, taking your blood sugars and writing them down (and when to worry and what to do), diet limitations, and the importance in asking questions that arise to THEIR doctor (and which one is approprite in some cases). It actually becomes second nature after a while...don't fret it.

With the newest regulations on patient teaching...most places are going to have to have specific staff on hand to do just that...now that so much documentation is going to be required (there is a whole new thing on just assessing patient learning levels at my hospital that would take an hour...even before the education which must be documented in a special place, level of understanding at each subject evaluated and why you think they understood...education material given to the patient in their own language...and the list goes on so long that a floor nurse would not even have time!!!! I am glad my hospital is seeing this, and getting specific nurses to do just education!

I am not stressed about it, after time you do get use to the things you need to teach just by experience, and it really does become second nature :).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Quickbeam is a BSN, RN and specializes in Government.

1,011 Posts; 10,309 Profile Views

It's been a long time but I do know I was surprised by two things:

1. How much OTC stuff people took for their bowels (I grew up in a nearly medication-free home)

2. How unbelievably competitive nursing students were!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Penelope_Pitstop has 13 years experience as a BSN, RN.

2,365 Posts; 45,959 Profile Views

that uaps existed. i thought nurses did everything, and had no knowledge of techs and the like. i don't remember when i figured this out, but my respect for nursing assistants was immediate. you see, doing "everything" without help was one of the reasons i was hesitant to become a nurse. the thought of having someone paid less than myself, who was willing to do "grunt" work was shocking to me. :imdbb:

jess

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

4 Followers; 11,299 Posts; 77,190 Profile Views

It's been a long time but I do know I was surprised by two things:

1. How much OTC stuff people took for their bowels (I grew up in a nearly medication-free home)

:yeahthat:

steph

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

mamason has 5 years experience and specializes in cardiac.

555 Posts; 6,708 Profile Views

What surprised me the most was that my "Advanced Med/Surg instructor didn't do IV starts. HUH? Another student (LPN who was bridging over to RN) had to show me how to do it. It was crazy! By the way, the fellow student did a great job at instructing me. (wink)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

prinsessa specializes in LTC/Skilled Care/Rehab.

615 Posts; 7,977 Profile Views

I am always surprised at how many OTC and prescriptions meds people take. I never take OTC meds unless I have a really bad headache. I'm not saying people don't need medication but it seems like some of it is unnecessary. When my mom's cholesterol was high she was offered medication instead of trying to lower it on her own. She said she rather try to lower it on her own first and never ended up needing meds. The doctor was shocked that she was able to do it without any medication.

One thing that really surprised me in nursing school (I'm still in nursing school lol) is that nurses have to spend so much time on paperwork instead of with their patients. That is one thing I am not looking forward to when I graduate. We have to do it now but I know it isn't going to end :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

lvnandmomx3 specializes in Day program consultant DD/MR.

834 Posts; 5,025 Profile Views

It suprised me that nurses are not respected as they should be. And most of the time it is by the family member not the pt. They all think that thier loved one should come 1st even if its for ice for thier water they think the SOB pt. shoud have to wait thier turn.......ummm I don't think so. And because of hipaa you can't tell them no you have towait I have a pt. with SOB that comes 1st.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

TheCommuter has 14 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych.

4 Followers; 226 Articles; 27,607 Posts; 320,137 Profile Views

I was surprised at the numerous classmates, clinical instructors, and floor nurses who were passive-aggressive in their handling of situations and people. Coming from a male-dominated career pathway, I was shocked at how rudely the females I witnessed were treating each other.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Elvish is a BSN, DNP, RN, NP and specializes in Community, OB, Nursery.

3 Followers; 17 Articles; 5,259 Posts; 67,788 Profile Views

I was amazed at how fast 0500 came....and how dang hard it would be to pry myself out of bed to get to clinical on time.

How thoroughly obsessed people can get about their bowels when they are in the hospital with a lot of time on their hands.

That sometimes IV Toradol does more for pts than their Morphine PCA.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nursetastic has 4 years experience.

259 Posts; 7,431 Profile Views

I am surprised at how poorly some instructors treat students. In my school I learned really quickly that asking questions is a direct challenge to an instructor's intelligence and they will snap and bite you quicker than a rattle snake if they feel you "should know this already". I also learned that a monkey can do this job. (No, really, she told a student a monkey could do the skill she was struggling with.) Many seasoned nurses have told me that they felt they lost some right to speak during nursing school, too. It is very disheartening.

I also learned that the most amazing men and women have begun the same adventure as I and we will get through this together! A strong support system is necessary to get through the adventure that is nursing school!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

14 Posts; 1,758 Profile Views

I was surprised to learn how competitve and petty instructors and students are. Some people are super nit-picky and others could care less.

I love the instructors who say, "You know what, you'll NEVER do this as a nurse (ie. care plans), so once I know that you know how to do it, you don't have to do anymore." Or those who say, "nurses don't do pre-clinical the night before they go to work (thank goodness!), so, I don't want you to get used to that. I'll assign you your patients in the morning...":yeah:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
×

This site uses cookies. By using this site, you consent to the placement of these cookies. Read our Privacy, Cookies, and Terms of Service Policies to learn more.