Treating Your Patients Like Family

I have been in multiple nursing homes throughout my career. It is pretty evident that there are two types of nurses – those who consider the patient and those that consider themselves.

But how do you know that your patient cannot hear you just because they cannot speak or have their eyes closed? I prefer to think of the patients. I have seen so many nurses walk into a room unannounced and push the patient’s meds through the g-tube without saying a word simply because their patient is non-verbal.

Treat every patient like their family. Treat them with kindness, respect, and appreciation. After all, how could we be nurses without our patients? Treating patients the way you treat family can be very simple.

Think of them as someone you have known forever. Of course, you have to complete the tasks at hand such as passing meds or resolving an issue but just think of it as if you are doing it for a loved one.

Take an extra second to stop thinking about all the stresses of being a nurse. Bringing your stress level down helps you deal with the patient logically and makes them feel very comfortable.

Do what you can to accommodate the patient. The little things make a huge difference. I have gone to the store to buy things personally for my patients because their family members have their own lives to live.

Don’t make fun of patients under any circumstance. Unfortunately, I have seen nurses make fun of patients. They think the patient is blind so what’s the harm? Well, they can still hear!

Communicate with your patients – what was true yesterday might be different today. I have seen nurses push meds into a g-tube. How would you like to go from hungry to full in 5 seconds? It doesn’t sound pleasant to me. Nurses and CNAs will say, “Oh, that patient never eats.” Well, maybe today is the day!

I just urge nurses to never stop trying. What kind of nurses would we be if we gave up on our patients? Where would our patients be without us? We need each other just like family!