Different Ways You Can Help Others As a Nurse Practitioner
May 11, 2022
If you’re considering working as a nurse practitioner, you might find yourself curious about how you can help others within this role. Many people find that the service they provide to their community is one of their biggest contributors to daily happiness and contentment. Because of this, how a particular position helps people in need is a big component of choosing the right career path. The following will explore the benefit to others you can provide in one career path in particular: that of a nurse practitioner.
What Is A Nurse Practitioner?
A nurse practitioner is someone who has completed additional graduate education and clinical training beyond registered nurse (RN) training. Commonly, the path to nurse practitioner involves a master of science in nursing. Typically this will involve a focus on something like pediatrics, gerontology, or family medicine. Degrees are available both in-person at accredited colleges and online; online MSN-FNP programs tend to be more flexible and less expensive. There are often also accelerated options for people who want to complete their studies quickly. Grants and scholarships are commonly provided in this field as well.
Advocate For People
When people are in need of medical attention, they’re often scared or confused. For many, a visit to the hospital is part of the worst day of their life. In this fragile state, people are easily led or directed, even against their previously stated wishes. As a nurse practitioner, you can hear people and take note of what they want or need and then do everything in your power to make sure that their preferences are respected. Beyond this, medical gaslighting is a real experience which involves patients feeling like their symptoms or comments were ignored or dismissed. Patients can be left feeling like they’re crazy or their experience is inaccurate, which can lead to future misdiagnoses if patients learn to ignore their own symptoms.
Soothe People On Their Darkest Days
Again, sometimes when people seek medical attention, they’re having one of the worst days of their lives. Reassurance, respect, encouragement, and understanding are things that people in this state dearly need. There’s a huge difference between someone rushing into your room and sticking needles into you and someone coming in and explaining: so I have here something that can help with the pain while we figure out what you need. You can be that difference. You can explain what’s going on and present options to people in an encouraging way.
Nursing can be a messy profession filled with every kind of emotion under the sun. Often medical facilities have visiting hours which end, and this means patients can be without their friends or family for long stretches. Nurses can offer emotional support during these trying times with friendly conversation and presence. What they’re going through is difficult, but they don’t need to go through it alone.
Because hospitals and medical facilities are doing their best to help as many people as possible, it can be hard to point out areas where there is room for improvement. One of these areas is trauma awareness. Trauma-aware nurse practitioners can help reduce the number of patients who leave a medical scenario with PTSD, which is sadly more common than people know. Being completely out of control of your own body (and having other people in control of it) can be a horrifying experience for many that carries on long after the medical problem has been solved. It can lead to fear of hospitals and avoidance of them as well as severe emotional difficulties that last years. This is particularly common in situations where a person did not choose to come to the medical facility but was brought by someone else.
Reduce Pain And Suffering
When someone’s body is struggling, the experience can be excruciating. As a nurse practitioner, you can be part of the solution to these struggles. You can also help reduce pain and suffering in the interim as a medical treatment plan is developed. People living with pain can struggle to enjoy any aspect of life; their relationships can suffer, and their work performance can plummet, negatively impacting their finances (which adds further stress and anxiety to an already difficult situation). You can help alleviate pain which can open someone up to an entirely new experience of life.
The above list should have given you a few ideas of how nurse practitioners help people. While no one would say that being a nurse practitioner is easy, many would say that it is incredibly rewarding.