Nurses are voted the most trusted profession. They show compassion and care for diverse populations. Many nurses do it because of a calling to become a nurse. Here are 10 things you might not know about nurses!
- Nurses are extremely organized
Due to workload demands, organization skills are vital to being a good nurse. Heavy patient loads, multiple medication passes, teaching and discharges often leave no time for a break. Being organized provides a sense of control. If the day starts chaotic and the nurse doesn’t have time to get organized, it can become stressful, very quickly.
- Nurses protect their patients
The word advocate means “a person who pleads on someone else’s behalf.” Nurses learn to be patient advocates in nursing school.
They stand up for their patients, by being their voice. They speak up for the patient by telling the physician they wrote wrong orders, correcting medication dosages, or speaking with their managers if there is a better way to do something to help a patient.
- Nurses are open-minded
I had a nurse manager ask me to care for the Vice President of the hospital’s daughter who was having a baby because “I would treat her well and care for her.”
While some nurses may be flattered, I was utterly offended. I told her, “I won’t treat her any different from a drug addict or homeless pregnant woman.” I know I am not alone in that statement. Nurses don’t care about the background of the patient. They care for the human being no matter their background.
- Nurses leave personal issues at the door
Nurses are able to switch off their personal life when it’s time for work. I’ve worked with nurses going through divorces, having issues with their kids, or with themselves. I have never seen people be able to work so diligently for others the way the nurses do. They care for their patients, before themselves. It’s common to not eat in 12 hours because a patient was unstable, or the workload was too much.
- Nurses work outside the hospital walls
Did you know having a nursing degree can leverage you into another career? Nurse entrepreneurs are growing every day with a variety of career paths. Wellness nurses, home care nurses, inventors and more have sprung up following their work at the hospital.
- Nurses have the most comfortable uniforms
In early nursing times, nurses often wore dresses, stockings, and caps. Those days are over (thank goodness), but the pendulum sure has shifted. Nurses wear clothing closer to pajamas compared to the clean-cut business world. It’s okay though, nurses love it.
Other staples of a proper nursing uniform are shoes and compression stockings. I bet you didn’t know nurses are wearing compression stockings under their uniforms most days. Caring for their legs and feet is an essential part of being a nurse.
- Nursing can be dangerous
Nurses often leave out details of the dangerous situations they are exposed to at work. They have exposures to infectious diseases and violent patients. Each day, one in four nurses experience violence at work.
- Nurses have options
A nursing degree provides career diversity full of different paths. I don’t know many nurses that have started and ended in the same job. It’s not that nurses don’t love what they do, but they do enjoy having the option to try something new.
For example, a nurse may spend a few years on a medical-surgical floor after graduating from school. After obtaining clinical skills, they might move on to management or information technology. Some nurses may decide to teach in a school, before preparing for retirement at a surgery center. The choices are endless.
- Nurses learn to love technology
Medicine changes quickly making it essential for nurses to stay up-to-date on technology. From the electronic medical record to cutting-edge patient care machines – technology is critical to optimal patient care.
- Nurses are tired
Nurses work 12-hour shifts, night shift, day shift, on-call hours, and more. As you might guess, this can make a nurse tired! This busy work schedule coupled with family life and responsibilities can be exhausting, not to mention the physical demands of work. Nurses have to take care of themselves to do a good job.
If you ever wanted to become a nurse, this is one of the best times. Nurses are in demand, even in a nursing shortage. Though the 12 hour shifts are long, a 3-day work schedule has its benefits. It’s a flexible career with endless options, as long as you have a caring heart.
Janine Kelbach, RNC-OB is a freelance writer and owner of WriteRN.net.