Wed 15 Feb, 2006 10:34 pm
Hi all i was just wondering how the rest of you find time to take a full lunch break or even a few breaks during the day. I mostly have a really hard time drinking water like i should because i never leave the floor...any tips? It's just crazy to have a 12-13 hour shift and only one break to eat as fast as possible.
When you or someone else comes up with an answer for this age old problem, please enlighten the rest of us.
I sympathize with you! I've always blamed myself for not drinking enough water during my shift.
What I have found that works well, and friends have have done this also, is carry one of those big, insulated mugs from convenience stores for example, and fill it with ice and water and carry it and leave it at the charting area (if you are allowed to do so!). Some nurses leave them on window sills, etc !
Hi! I just wanted to say that I truly find it ridiculous that us nurses have to shovel food into our mouths as fast as possible and either don't have the time to drink water or are "allowed" to on the job. I work in nursing homes through an agency at night and I don't care what anyone has to say about me leaving a bottle of my water on my med cart or in it while I pass meds because it's hot in those places and I'm working very physically and I'm sweating and loosing tons of water and need it!!!! Why? Because I'm human, we're all human. It's just one of those things that fall under human conditions to survive. Fresh air, sunshine and water. We don't get any of those at work. So what I purpose is to defy management who gets on you about drinking water while at work. They get to drink whatever they want whenever they want. Plus, they sit in an office all day and the AC or Heat is on for them. I say that we need to stand up for ourselves since we don't have a union and for goodness sakes, we're only asking for water! I'm sorry if I went overboard with this, but I remember last summer working the day shift and how hot it was and how I had to hide my water bottle from the DON and ADONs. It was ridiculous. I could see if you were standing there eating a big sandwhich and fries and a big gulp on your cart, sure that's lunch but not coffee or water. As I'm sitting here typing this I'm drinking an ice cold bottle of water..... :wink: We need to just take the best care possible of ourselves in order to care for our patients. So......drink your water and smile!
I have advice. You may not like it. I have had problems with dehydration at work to. I changed my ways. If you make $20/h and you don't take your break you are giving the hospital that does not want to pay you a good salary a $10/day donation, thats $30/week and $1500 per 50 weeks to an instution that is making money hand over fist and won't provide you with a break. Healer, heal thyself. I take my breaks. If there is no relief, I call the supervisor to relieve me. I do not care what the hospitals excuse is, I take my break. Sometimes I sit at the desk and eat, but if I do, I refuse to get up for a call light. If I have to work overtime to complete my work I do. I got tired of supervisors telling me, as an agency nurse, that it was unexceptable that I did not get a break and giving me a hassel about signing my time slip for no break. I may leave my lunch if a code is called on my unit during my lunch because on nights we are shorter, but otherwise I break no matter what. I even had one supervisor tell me that if I wanted to get paid for no break I had to take a form up to the charge nurse on the floor to get her to sign it. I said I will scratch out my time for leaving and resign when I return to the office. They had to pay me 45 min because they were trying to make me say forget it, its not worth it to go back up stairs. Hospitals put us in no win situations, you think they don't know it. Except for California, the rest of the nurses have no leg to stand on. You must stand for yourself. That is unpaid time, your right to do as you choose with that 30 min. I even had an ER patient scream at me because she saw me eating thru a glass window while she sat in the waiting room in pain. I said you don't go to your job and work without a break and neither will I. Take your break. When you get rich, then you can give the hospital $1500 per year, but not now. I have been sitting at the desk eating and had another nurse look at me and say your patient is calling. I look at them and say can you see I am having lunch, either you answer the light or let it ring for 30 minutes, but I am off the clock. Because of that --it happened to me last week here in California--I usually dont break on the floor. I quit my first travel job here in California because they would not give me my breaks. I said to them I left Florida and came to California so I could have my breaks,now you think I will put up with this nonsense from you when I drove all the way across the country, I don't think so. And that is my view on breaks.