Hurry Peculiarly Hurtful to Sick

Hurry Peculiarly Hurtful to Sick

All hurry or bustle is peculiarly painful to the sick. And when a patient has compulsory occupations to engage him, instead of having simply to amuse himself, it becomes doubly injurious. The friend who remains standing and fidgetting about while a patient is talking business to him, or the friend who sits and proses, the one from an idea of not letting the patient talk, the other from an idea of amusing him,—each is equally inconsiderate. Always sit down when a sick person is talking business to you, show no signs of hurry, give complete attention and full consideration if your advice is wanted, and go away the moment the subject is ended.

How to Visit the Sick and Not Hurt Them

Always sit within the patient’s view, so that when you speak to him he has not painfully to turn his head round in order to look at you. Everybody involuntarily looks at the person speaking. If you make this act a wearisome one on the part of the patient you are doing him harm. So also if by continuing to stand you make him continuously raise his eyes to see you. Be as motionless as possible, and never gesticulate in speaking to the sick.

Never make a patient repeat a message or request, especially if it be some time after. Occupied patients are often accused of doing too much of their own business. They are instinctively right. How often you hear the person, charged with the request of giving the message or writing the letter, say half an hour afterwards to the patient, “Did you appoint 12 o’clock?” or, “What did you say was the address?” or ask perhaps some much more agitating question—thus causing the patient the effort of memory, or worse still, of decision, all over again. It is really less exertion to him to write his letters himself. This is the almost universal experience of occupied invalids.

This brings us to another caution. Never speak to an invalid from behind, nor from the door, nor from any distance from him, nor when he is doing anything.

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Notes on Nursing

Length: 130 pages
Last Updated: 2020-06-30
Language: English
ISBN (Holloway.com):
978-1-952120-13-8

Notes on Nursing

by Florence Nightingale
A treatise on the best practices for the physical and psychological care of sick people, written by the iconic founder of modern nursing. It is a classic in formal nursing training, and was intended to be read and used by the general public as well. Joan Quixley praised this influential book as “the first of its kind ever to be written.”
Originally published by Harrison of Pall Mall in 1859
Project GutenbergDigital Text
National Portrait GalleryImages
Rachel JepsenDigital Production