#Week5- Heart Awareness to Students and Professionals

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Another year, another campaign for heart awareness month. No, the heart doesn’t “speak to you.” Those vengeful feelings of your ex-sweetheart are in your head and not in your heart. Lay off those romantic soap operas my friend. For a simplistic way of saying it, your heart cycles oxygen throughout your whole body… so that you can live. Duh. 
Let me start off by saying that my year’s goal, to write one post a week, is tougher than I thought it would be. Ugh. Week #6 is just around the corner and it’s crunch time. I want to say thanks, to everyone who keep up with the blog. Thanks to all my readers who have been sticking around patiently, for the next post. This blog has been a lot of fun, for me. And I really appreciate your efforts to read and share these experiences.

Now, if you didn’t know already, well, it’s Heart Awareness Month. Recently I got an email from my unit manager, reminding the whole psych department to wear red. For me personally, it’s my first year to become aware of a “Go Red” national heart awareness campaign, specific for women. I always thought heart awareness month was for all and not sex specific? Shouldn’t it be for all? I’m starting to think we’re losing ourselves socially. Things are getting confusing. But, I digress. I’m not gonna knock on that. Let’s get down to business. (FYI…I haven’t slept much lately. I might be a little tangential).

What I’m about to tell you goes in the same way we advocate people from smoking, doing drugs, weight management, etc. As health care professionals, we can only advise a patient to do something and not force them. One must be accountable for their own actions; willing to make the changes themselves, for it to be a permanent venture. That’s why education and awareness is so important. With that said, I find it funny how we (as healthcare professionals who are all credible in a field amongst peers) don’t take our own advice? #LOL.

You’ve all heard it before, healthcare professionals are the worst patients! That’s because we are all stubborn, arrogant, ignorant, and all of the above! Seriously. We have an excuse for everything too. We hardly ever practice what we preach. Of course, I’m not speaking for everyone here. So, don’t get all butt-hurt on me. But, I like to think a lot of us are not mindful to our own actions. I work with a lot of them! Hell, I’m not either. I admit it; I have a horrible diet…Cardio? What’s that?…I do hit the weights, from time to time, but I eat it all back in cheeseburgers!

In school we educate ourselves in communication skills and basic learning techniques. As health care professionals, we see and foreshadow the complexities of the heart. Our minds read and interpret lab values, EKGs; we study the physiology and pharmacology of the heart. And then, we take all that information and strive to get creative, when it comes to teaching our patients the value of heart health; we draw pictures, make blog posts, make cool videos, make diet plans, etc. And yet, after all our efforts and knowledge, we are just as co-morbid as the rest of the community.       

So then, how do we advocate for changes? Well, I think we need to start off by taking our own vital signs, from time to time. Get back to the basics and assess what our own blood pressure is. Accountability to ourselves can stem a long way, into our own credibility. For example, we can’t just encourage a patient to manage their weight, when we’re not watching our weight too. Our patients aren’t idiots. They can see right through us. Everyone is part of the interdisciplinary treatment team; key word team. If one falls out, the treatment plan won’t move forward. I say this with a grain of salt, of course. I know there are limitations to the dedication we can provide to our patients. We’re not perfect. But, we can at least show our patients we are trying too. It keeps us all honest and humble. It makes us all human.

I won’t educate/lecture you students and professionals a-like on the cardiovascular system and how to manage it. Google it. Do what you want. I’m ranting and tired. You grown. #LOL.

What are your thoughts? Share your experiences! Leave a comment below!

Cheers,

SV.

Author: nursesarereal

My nursing professor once said that keeping a journal, over time, will allow me to see growth. In myself? I’m not sure yet. I’m hoping. I like to believe that nursing school saved my life. Maybe I’ll have some fun doing this. Cheers.

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