Although every patient handles fears differently, one thing they all need is reassurance and comfort.
Omaha, NE (PRWEB) May 11, 2013
In recognition of National Nurses Week, Aureus Medical Group (web: aureusmedical.com), a nationwide leader in healthcare staffing, offers suggestions to those working in travel nursing jobs regarding caring for patients with fears and phobias. National Nurses Week is celebrated annually, May 6-12.
For an experienced travel nurse, dealing with anxious or nervous patients is frequently part of the job. Oftentimes, individuals seeking medical treatment have misconceptions about what to expect, which can lead to fear, whereas others may have legitimate phobias about certain routine medical procedures. Although dealing with frightened patients can be a challenge, it doesn't have to be. Every patient interaction is a learning experience, and helping individuals face their fears and overcome anxiety can be tremendously rewarding for travel nursing professionals.
Tackling fears head-on:
Many children are scared of injections. Youngsters who are particularly small might be easily intimidated by the sight of a large needle and the discomfort that can accompany receiving a shot. However, phobias about needles (trypanophobia) are far from exclusive to children, and other fears can manifest themselves during the course of a hospital stay, such as instances where IVs have to be set up or blood must be drawn for testing.
Although every patient handles fear differently, one thing they all need is reassurance and comfort. When it comes to administering shots to children, having a parent or guardian present during the procedure can be immensely beneficial.
Communication skills are vital when attempting to put a nervous – or even terrified – patient's mind at ease. Travel nurses can minimize the amount of fear a patient experiences by explaining, in detail, everything they're about to do as they do it. This can include explaining how and why an IV is being set up, or how long it will take to draw enough blood. The more information a patient has about what to expect, the more likely they are to endure the procedure as comfortably and cooperatively as possible.
One size doesn't fit all:
Something else for travel nursing professionals to bear in mind is that patients' reactions may be based on their previous experiences and not just the procedure itself. In some cases, all it takes for a trypanophobic to start worrying is the recollection of how their last injection was handled. If a nurse had trouble finding a vein, or incorrectly set up a patent's IV, this can lead to anxiety and fear before you've even removed the cap from the hypodermic needle.
To ease this process, a travel nurse can incorporate gentle questioning into the prep routine when getting a patient ready for an injection. For example, most patients aren't afraid to mention their fear of needles, so when presented with this information, a travel nurse should ask questions about how their last shot went. If the patient responds by saying there was a problem setting up an IV or other issue, take even greater care when performing this procedure to minimize the patient's discomfort. Remember – everybody's fears are different, and what one patient may be able to handle might send another into a panic.
Celebrating small victories:
Although it's easy to focus on just getting a patient's blood drawn or vaccination administered, a travel nurse can help patients -especially younger ones -begin to overcome their fears. Once the procedure is complete, emphasize how well the patient handled their injection. Smiling and even laughing along with patients after a procedure can provide positive reinforcement and, ultimately, make their next shot more bearable.
The more positive experiences a trypanophobic has, the more likely they are to cope with the emotional and physical responses to their triggers. This will make travel nursing jobs a lot easier, and will help patients have a much more pleasant experience.