MENTAL HEALTH NURSING
Mental health is also equally
important to the well-being of individuals, societies and communities. Mental
health is state of well-being whereby individuals recognize their abilities,
are able to cope with the normal stresses of life, work productively and
contribute to the community.
According to WHO Mental health
problems are highly prevalent now. Nurses play vital role in treatment and
care. Nurses are the largest group of professionals providing mental health
care in both primary and specialist health services. Trained nurses can
contribute to the promotion of mental health and the prevention and treatment
of mental disorders.
Mental health nursing, also known as
psychiatric nursing, is a specialized field of nursing practice that involves
the care of individuals with a mental health disorder to help them recover and
improve their quality of life.
Mental health nurses have advanced
knowledge of the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of psychiatric disorders
that helps them provide specialized care. They typically work alongside other
health professionals in a medical team with the aim of providing the optimal
clinical outcomes for the patient.
Mental illness can affect individuals
of any age, ethnic origin, or socioeconomic status. For this reason, a mental
health nurse may need to work with many different individuals from various
health nurse is responsible for the
This primary role of a mental health nurse is to provide care to
patients with a psychiatric disorder, mental health issue, or behavioural
problems. Many of the tasks performed by a mental health nurse are similar to
that of a psychiatrist and include diagnosis, psychotherapy, and prescription
Some mental health nurses also choose to specialize further, such as in
the management of individuals with a psychiatric disorder of a certain age or
association. These may include paediatrics, adolescents, geriatrics, substance
abuse, and eating disorders.
There are several training education pathways
that can lead to a career mental health nurse practitioner (APRN-PMH). As it is
a specialization of nursing, an individual must first complete a Bachelor
degree in Nursing and pass the board examination in order to become a
Registered Nurse (RN). Following graduation and registration, they may then go
on to complete a master’s degree or doctorate in advanced practice nursing,
with a specialization in psychiatry and mental
health. This degree includes extensive clinical experience as a core part of
the curriculum and, upon graduation, the nurse may also choose to complete a
one-year residency to develop their skills further.
individual well suited to a career as a mental health nurse may have the
Mental health nurses may work in a range of environments, depending on
the position and the role that they play. This includes hospitals, psychiatric
practices, substance abuse programs, in-home care services, and community
The work schedule of the nurse will depend greatly on the setting in
which they work. For those working in hospitals or practices with
round-the-clock care, it may include shifts at night time, on weekends, and
holidays. However, those in community agencies or private practices tend to
work regular daytime hours.
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