Being a floor nurse is hard. 12+ hours on your feet, taking care of others, bending, lifting, twisting, turning, cleaning, prepping, feeding, caring. Exhausting is completely underselling it, we know. Nurses and other health care professionals log long hours on their feet, with little time for breaks. If you are like most nurses, you go home aching, sore, and tired. Each year more floor nurses leave the profession than nursing schools can replace. This, in addition to the aging population and declining health of the average American, puts more stress on the remaining floor nurses. At JMAC, we want to offer our healthcare heroes a better way. While we can’t do much about how many nurses there are on the force, we can help those existing nurses work more comfortably. Join us today as we offer some tips to help extend your floor nursing career, comfortably.
Hydrate and Eat Well
Proper nutrition and hydration are paramount to maintaining good overall health, and it helps support healthy body weight and your body’s ability to manage stress. It can be difficult to sit and eat a full, nutritious meal, but we can bet you have already experienced hunger fatigue halfway into the shift that affects your mood, ability to think clearly and get you reaching for whatever convenience food is around. And, in a hospital unit, there never seems to be a shortage of cookies and other baked goods. We encourage you to bring healthy snacks that are packed full of brain and body supporting nutrients and hydrate well throughout the day.
Use Proper Body Mechanics
The medical profession has come a long way in the last few decades as far as body mechanics is concerned. Patient furniture and mobility aids help reduce the amount of actual lifting that medical staff is responsible for and helps promote proper body mechanics when you do have to lift. It may take a few extra seconds, but it will save your back a few years if you make sure to elevate the bed rather than bending over further. Use a step stool rather than extending your reach. Use slide boards and draw sheets rather than pulling in patients. Every little thing you can do to better align your body during physical tasks, the more you reduce your risk of injury. And, injury over time is the leading cause of premature retirement from a floor nursing career.
Take Care of Yourself
Of the 3 million nurses in the United States, nearly 75% of all nurses work in a hospital setting and log more than 110 million hours each year — that’s a lot of time on your feet! Burn out is common in the nursing profession because nurses spend so much time taking care of others, so there is often little time left over to take care of you. It is important to remember that nursing is a 24-hour operation, and the work is never done. Whether you take five minutes to yourself to grab a snack, empty your bladder, and catch your breath or not, the work will still be waiting for you, and the next shift. It is equally as important to remember that if you are not taking the time to take care of yourself, you won’t be there to take care of your patients. Self-care is health care.
Invest in the Right Shoes
As we have discussed, nurses spend the majority of their time on their feet. In a 12-hour shift, you can easily spend more than 10 hours of that on your feet, walking, standing, and moving. As the shift wears on and fatigue sets in, body mechanics are quick to be compromised. Investing in the right shoes can help you get through your shift more comfortably and help reduce injury. To keep yourself safe, you’ll want to wear shoes that are breathable but won’t result in you being exposed to bodily fluids if something gets on your shoe. Your shoes should be supportive and easy to clean. To help, you can add JMAC Shock-Absorbing shoe inserts to any nursing shoe for added comfort and joint protection. Perfect for working on concrete floors, the JMAC polymer gel insoles absorb nearly 92% of the force in each step, have excellent memory recall, are antimicrobial, and feature tapered toe to heel comfort — it’s as though they were made for healthcare professionals!
At JMAC, we use our proprietary polymer material to create shoe inserts that have our working-class in mind. From construction workers to lab technicians, our polymer gel insoles are made for those who put in the hours on their feet. There are more than 3 million nurses in the United States, with that number projected to skyrocket by another half million over the next five years. With the aging population and higher demand on our medical community, we want to do our part to ensure you can have a long career caring for those who need it most. For comfort you can count on, partner with Americule. Shop our nursing shoe inserts online today, and take advantage of our special offers!