Nursing is among the most trusted professions, which gives you the chance to improve most people’s lives. It is a rewarding career and has diverse work environments meaning you can work in a setting of your preference. To become a registered nurse, you can sign up for a program of your choice depending on the time you are willing to allocate to your studies.
Although the benefits of being a nurse, such as great pay and high job demand, are usually alluring, they should not be your primary drive to pursue nursing. Nurses face several challenges in their workplaces, and you can bend to the pressure if you are there for the wrong reasons. From long working hours to workplace hazards, nurses face multiple issues in their jobs.
Below are some of the challenges you are bound to face as a nurse.
Besides working long hours, nurses spend most, if not all, of these hours on their feet because of the nature of their job. For this reason, nursing tops the list of careers at risk for back injuries. Nurses routinely engage in activities requiring much bending, such as lifting patients from the bed to a wheelchair.
While special equipment such as slide sheets make such activities strenuous, they do not completely prevent the risk of work-related injuries. The constant standing and bending can result in back injuries such as herniated discs.
Although back injuries are the most common, nurses can also develop shoulder and leg pain. Such injuries may be a reason why some nurses abandon their careers.
Long hours of work
Nursing is a round-the-clock job that requires you to be on your toes for up to 12 hours each day. For this reason, long working hours have been a constant challenge that nurses have faced over the years. In case of an emergency, your services might be needed even on your days off. Because of this tight schedule, finding a balance between work and personal life can be daunting for most nurses.
Not only is it physically draining, but long hours of work can also be mentally exhausting. Without proper planning and time management, nurses risk experiencing burnouts from time to time. Prioritizing self-care is essential for nurses since they need to be at their best to offer quality services.
Rapid technological evolution
While technological advancements have positively impacted the healthcare industry, it has also proven to be a challenge for most medical staff, including nurses. Besides their continuing education, nurses need always to be conversant with the fast-rising technological trends in healthcare. As the industry involves, new treatment approaches come on board, and most of them require the use of technological devices.
It can be tedious to get conversant with all the emerging data while still committing to the busy schedule. While dealing with new equipment may be challenging for most nurses, it can be especially stressful for those with a natural proclivity to technology.
Shortage of staff
While many people are joining the healthcare industry, more and more nurses continue to resign from their jobs each year. The shortage of nurses contributes to the long working hours that these caregivers endure with each passing day. If a facility is understaffed, the available nurses lack adequate time to offer quality care to patients or interact with their families.
Since most nurses regard their job as a calling more than a profession, the inability to tend to patients as required can be a source of distress or demotivation.
Bullying and harassment
Like any other work setup, nurses are not exempted from bullying and harassment in their workplaces. Humiliation may come from the patients, patients’ families, or colleagues. Harassment may be verbal or physical abuse which is one of the harmful challenges of nurses.
Another form of bullying can be from veteran nurses who are not always as hospitable as they should be to the newbies. Instead of offering guidance politely, they can be impatient with new nurses. Such an environment can be toxic for a nurse and affect your mental well-being.
In your quest to become a nurse, you need to be conversant with these challenges that you may face at work. Fortunately, you can always overcome these challenges with the right support group.