Patients suffering from chronic illnesses may face many anxieties, fears, and pains when receiving care. They may even want to give up because they have been holding on to their disease-struck lives for far too long. In such situations, nurses are the go-to human beings.
After all, fear of the unknown is usual among patients and their families. Still, one of the many aspects of nursing includes reducing that fear. Nurses are the healthcare professionals who spend the most time with patients and families during a hospital stay. Doctors may help treat, but nurses are in charge of providing care.
They provide not only medical care but also crucial emotional support. Nurses also serve as cheerleaders, fitness instructors, grief counselors, and hand-holders. Their responsibilities are far within an average person’s reach as they assist patients with chronic illnesses soothingly and effectively. They are with their patients from the first to the last day of their lives, day and night. To shed more light on that matter, here is how nurses help patients with chronic illnesses recover:
They prepare patients for treatment.
Patients with chronic illnesses prepare for treatment during their hospital stay by taking specific medications, adhering to a restricted diet, and performing other tasks directed by the nurse. Nurses are responsible for explaining how to prepare for treatment and ensuring that they do so during their hospital stay. They also answer patients’ questions regarding the preparation method, such as the intention of the medicine they are taking and any potential side effects.
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They help patients get used to the hospital environment.
It is usual for patients to take some time to adjust to hospital life because it is different from how they live at home. Everything, from the hospital food and robe to the smell and noise of the hospital, can contribute to the patient’s uneasiness. This can be upsetting for some patients, but nurses should be on hand to help them adjust to their new surroundings.
Nurses ensure that patients with chronic illnesses are greeted with comfort and have all their information regarding their stay. Other than that, nurses assist patients in adjusting to hospital life more quickly by providing a comfortable environment. According to Patient Engagement Hit, this affects the overall patient experience, fulfillment, and emotional and psychological state.
They monitor the patient’s health.
Patients with chronic illnesses require constant attention, and nurses are the ones to give it. They closely observe and monitor their patients to record any relevant information or symptoms that may lead to a diagnosis or a modification in their treatment plan. This may entail carefully reviewing patient records, maintaining intravenous (IV) lines to ensure they are changed regularly, and monitoring the patient’s vital signs. Nurses also pay close attention to nonverbal cues from their patients to identify the underlying causes of their patient’s health problems.
Nurses spend the most time with patients, so they are presumed to provide medical care and social interaction. They watch their physical and mental health, assess their requirements and communication abilities, and know when to put them down. Nurses can help distract their patients from their irrational fears by using bright conversation, small talk, or a good sense of humor. According to Health Conscious, a positive attitude can assist patients with acute and chronic pain.
Keeping a record of their medical history and symptoms
Nurses record and maintain accurate documentation of their patients’ health to ensure that they receive appropriate care. Most nurses start by asking patients about their medical history to gather information about previous surgeries and diagnoses, allergies, relevant family medical data, and current medications.
Suppose the patient receives a new diagnosis, meds, or treatment plan during their visit. In that case, a nurse may be in charge of updating their medical record. Suppose the patient receives a new diagnosis, meds, or treatment plan during their visit. In that case, a nurse may be in charge of updating their medical record. They may also ask the patient about any current symptoms they are beginning to experience and take their vitals. It is critical to keep detailed and accurate medical records to ensure that patients receive the best possible care.
They exhibit compassion
Compassion is a necessary quality for nurses and a must-have for patients suffering from chronic illnesses.
Nurses must provide compassionate care. It is commonly defined as a profound awareness of another’s suffering combined with a strong desire to alleviate it. According to one study, this definition does not encompass nurses’ full range of compassion. Nurses are no strangers to witnessing suffering, but compassionate care is about more than just alleviating pain. It is about immersing yourself in a patient’s experience and allowing them to maintain their dignity and independence while receiving patient care.
Educating patients on how to manage their illnesses
Nurses also educate patients with chronic diseases about various medical conditions and manage their symptoms. That could include explaining what medications the patient needs when a follow-up appointment should be scheduled and directions for rehabilitative exercises or practices.
Nurses may also explain any additional post-treatment home care needs to a patient’s family or caregiver. This can include nutrition and diet recommendations, physical therapy, and exercise routines. Some nurses may also educate people about common diseases by speaking at seminars, assisting with blood drives, or providing services at health screening and immunization clinics.
Nurses put patients with chronic illnesses at ease by delivering compassionate care and improving outcomes with the above-said ways. Patients are more likely to open up about their degree of suffering and unpleasantness when they feel at ease with nurses. Furthermore, nurses are critical to advancing healthcare settings because they constantly contact patients. As a result, they are a precious source of current information about the best practices for providing exceptional patient care.