Home Medical Services What should you be monitoring as a registered nurse?

What should you be monitoring as a registered nurse?

by Juan D. Vanpelt

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As a registered nurse, you need to make sure that you aren’t just focusing on dealing with diseases and illnesses as they come, you also need to be prepared in order to make sure that you are catching them before they become serious problems. Registered nurses need to be able to monitor both their patients and their communities in order to prevent outbreaks.

But there’s more to monitor than just the temperatures and the fevers of your patients. You also need to make sure that you know what you are supposed to be monitoring. Here are some of the things that you need to be looking at for a registered nurse. The more items that you are able to monitor, the easier it will be to catch people whenever they are sick.

What is a registered nurse?

A registered nurse or RN is a licensed medical professional who provides hands-on care for different medical groups. They can work in plenty of medical fields and positions, including hospitals, doctor’s offices, nursing homes, and long-term care facilities. These nurses work directly with patients, doctors, and various members of healthcare teams in order to make sure that everyone is on the same page.

These nurses manage the care of their patients, control infections, communicate and promote health, and provide basic care for everyone they work with. Depending on the spaces where the nurses are working, they can perform various duties to help their patients. This can include helping patients get ready for exams or treatments, recording the medical history of the patient, prescribing and administering medication, and teaching patients how to manage any conditions they have.

How do you become a registered nurse?

Every single RN will need to follow the rules of the state they are in, in order to become registered and fully licensed. For many nurses, they will need to enroll in a nursing program before taking a national licensing exam. Whether you choose to take an Associate Nursing Program (ADN) or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program, a fast track nursing program online is an excellent option. Marymount University offers a range of excellent programs, including an online accelerated BSN. The BSN includes online coursework and offers clinical placement support, making it a valuable option for those wishing to become qualified registered nurses. On this course, you will learn everything you need to know about how to become a professional nurse by assessing the client’s physical and mental health, as well as how to research your client and provide evidence-based nursing for your clients.

After you complete your program, you simply need to take the NCLEX-RN exam which tests you on the four key areas of nursing practice. These include the nursing process, caring, communication, and teaching. Upon qualification, you can either stay as an RN or focus on specializing in other areas. These include becoming an emergency room nurse, an intensive care unit nurse, or a pediatric nurse. You can even further specialize and get a master’s or doctoral degree.

What should registered nurses be focused on?

Registered nurses, especially those in the field of public health, focus on working with both people and communities in order to improve health and safety. Many public health specialists focus on the various factors that can affect different people’s health. They also focus on preventative medicine where they work with communities to prevent disease from occurring in the first place.

There are lots of environmental, genetic, and lifestyle factors that will all influence the health of a population, and it is the job of a registered nurse to focus on them. Here are some of these things that need to be focused on and understood as you work with the community.

What is in the air?

For starters, one of the factors that can affect the health of a population is air quality. There are plenty of air pollutants and allergens in the air, and when we breathe those in, they can get into our bodies. They can irritate our eyes, noses, mouths, and skin, and affect our health in general. Sometimes pollutants can get into our bloodstream and can cause or worsen diseases.

If we breathe polluted air for a long period of time, serious health problems can and will occur. Various parts of the body, as well as other preexisting diseases and health conditions, can become much worse with exposure to polluted air.

Allergens can adversely affect our health. Depending on what people are allergic to, and if it is in the air (such as pollen or ragweed), people can suffer a wide range of health conditions and problems due to their allergies. While many allergies can’t be cured, medication can reduce their severity and can allow people with allergies to live normal lives.

What does the patient’s lifestyle look like?

It is amazing how a good diet, some serious exercise, and a generally healthy lifestyle can positively impact our general health. For many people, these things are enough to ward off serious injury and disease. However, there are some people who don’t have a healthy lifestyle. Regardless of everything else, the lifestyle of the patient is going to inform their health choices and affect their health.

Many registered nurses focus on communicating to their patients and the community about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. Nurses are able to communicate with their patients and tell them all about the newest health trends and risks that are occurring in the world. Additionally, many RNs can push people toward resources that will make them healthier.

Nutritionists, exercise and health coaches, and other experts can all help patients figure out what their ideal exercise and diet plans are. Then they can work toward a healthy lifestyle that suits their needs, and that will certainly increase their health and their chance of fighting off disease.

Registered nurses are able to ask the right questions about the lifestyles of their patients and help them figure out how to make their lifestyle of choice much healthier. The more they communicate about health and talk about optimal strategies to have health within a community, the more educated people will be, and the better choices they will make.

Stress and mental health

Of course, as much as registered nurses focus on physical health and wellness, they should also continue to take mental health into consideration. Everyone knows that stress and poor mental health can very easily turn into physical health problems if you aren’t careful. If you aren’t taking care of your mental health, it can and will make you sick.

A good, registered nurse will take a look at your lifestyle and not just see where your physical health can be improved, but also where mental health can be improved. A good RN will try to identify pain points, stressors, and areas where you are constantly under stress. Then they will try to help you reduce that stress. Whether that is through eliminating the situation, reducing the amount of stress you are feeling, or allowing you to take the time to focus on good self-care habits.

One of these strategies, or all of them, will allow patients to properly manage their mental health. The role of an RN is to help patients get a handle on any mental health issues they are dealing with and help them get in contact with any relevant or useful resources.

The impact of work

One last issue with lifestyle is the occupational hazards that come with a job. For many workers, there are occupational hazards in their line of work. All jobs come with risks, whether that be the risk of physical injury or stress. RNs are trained to help patients through any risks associated with their jobs so that they can be happy and healthy at work.

For example, even with a sedentary job, you can still injure yourself. Posture problems, issues with your hands and your eyesight from being at the computer all day, and other health issues can occur. The role of an RN is to educate patients on these risks and offer solutions to mitigate the chances of physical or mental strain. With the right education and prevention and treatment plans in place, everyone will have the opportunity to balance work with upholding their physical and mental health.

Genetic traits and hereditary conditions

Finally, the health of your patients doesn’t start and stop with them. But rather it goes all the way up their family tree. Various hereditary conditions put patients at risk. Genetics can increase the risk of your patient getting or developing a serious illness at some point in their lives.

Make sure to communicate with your patient about their genetic information and outline a plan to make sure you are screening for these issues at every checkup. Additionally, if there is anything you can do in order to prevent these genetic problems from occurring, then you need to make sure your patient is prepared to do them.

The more that you prepare for these potential genetic traps and long-term problems, the greater the chance of you catching them for your patient. Don’t be afraid to delve into the family history of your patient and make sure that nothing is going to cause major health problems down the line.

How often should these issues be monitored?

All of these elements should be touched on with every check-up visit. In focusing on these, you should start to see some improvement in the physical and mental health attitudes of your patients. This should also translate to increased health across the board. Don’t be afraid to take the time to ask your patients how they are doing with some of the items you have discussed and get a good sense of their progress.

Additionally, if you are working with a team in order to make sure that the health of your patient is handled properly, then you need to make sure that communication with your team is effective. The same goes for if you are talking with your community. You don’t just need to check in with the community to see how their health is doing, but you also need to make sure to talk to community leaders. They are going to be your lifeline in order to make sure that you know everything that is happening with the community. In turn, you will be able to talk to them and they will be able to help you communicate with the overall community.

Keeping your finger on the pulse of your patients and the wider community is going to help you have a laser focus on their health and their needs. Then you can focus on really enhancing their health and making them the best versions of themselves.

Don’t be afraid to communicate with the patients

The more that you communicate with your patients and ask the right questions about everything that is impacting their health, the more you will find that they have problems you can solve. As a registered nurse, your job isn’t just to handle illnesses when they come, but also to prevent them entirely. Solving these problems will certainly prove the old maxim, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!”

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