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5 useful tips for dealing with difficult patients


Nursing is a beautiful profession that requires care and dedication. Most nurses are dedicated to their patients. Communication is everything when it comes to establishing a reassuring and healthy patient-nurse relationship. Caring for patients and improving their lives can leave an imprint on a nurse’s life. However, every nurse encounters a number of difficult patients. These patients are likely to be frightened and in need of the best care that can be offered. That’s why we bring you these five helpful tips to make managing difficult patients as easy as possible.

  1. Don’t be aggressive with aggressive patients.

There will be times when a patient will become angry and refuse to be treated. When dealing with aggressive patients, it is important to take the time to talk with them carefully to understand how they feel. Once you understand the reasons for their aggression, you can calmly offer solutions to their problems. Speaking with strength and compassion will help reduce their anger. Give patients the sense of positivity they need to begin the healing process.

  1. Keep your emotions under control

Patients experiencing intense emotions often try to create more emotional turmoil around them. To help extremely emotional patients, it is advisable to exercise control over your own emotions. Expressing emotional control not only allows you to handle the situation with professional clarity, but also instills a sense of emotional stability in the patient. Respond to the patient with positive and kind language. Responding to difficult patients with negative language will only make the situation worse.

  1. Body language is everything

Patients will always pay attention to your nurse’s body language. A defensive posture or crossed arms can send a difficult message to a difficult patient. As a nurse, you must provide care with open arms as a source of balanced well-being. Keep your facial expressions relaxed. Don’t forget to make eye contact to remind patients that you are with them. When you start to feel that frustrated feeling all over your body, take a deep breath and increase your physical energy. Instead of making it worse, use that passion to be the nurse a difficult patient needs.

  1. Be patient, but don’t let them insult you.

There is a difference between letting difficult patients tell you their problems and being insulted. There is never a reason why you have to accept a patient’s behavior. If a patient becomes overly agitated or violent when you try to help him or her, talk to your supervisor. If things get so bad that you think a patient is putting you or himself in danger, alert hospital security. Do not expose yourself to extreme conditions beyond the limits of your nursing duties.

  1. Always take a moment to recover.

Don’t let one bad experience with a difficult patient ruin your whole day. Even if patients don’t spontaneously thank you, your help as a nurse will greatly improve their condition. You need to let go of negativity. Don’t cause your health to deteriorate by internalizing the stress of the day. Don’t let a difficult patient make you feel like you’re not trying hard enough. Remember that you are good at what you do and let the experience inspire you to keep working hard to help people through their most difficult times.

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