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4 Key Things to Know Before Becoming a Nurse

by Byrne Anderson
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Are you a high school student considering career options? Maybe you’ve already been working for a while and you’re thinking of making the switch to a more rewarding job.

Either way, maybe you’re considering becoming a nurse.

Is nursing life the ideal career path for you? Here are four important factors to consider.

  1. The Nursing Shortage Is Real

People have been talking about the nursing shortage since the 1990s, and the problem only continues to grow. Experts estimate that the US will need 1.2 million more RNs by 2030.

Nursing ranks as the fifth most in-demand job in the entire US. This is due to a number of factors, from the continuing pandemic to a growing elderly population.

One thing is for sure: The demand for skilled nurses won’t diminish anytime soon, which means you’ll enjoy excellent job security.

  1. The Nursing Life Is Rewarding

Across the board, from LPNs to RNs, the job satisfaction rate among nurses is 94%-98%. For those who dream of helping people for a living, there are few career paths more rewarding than nursing life.

However, when asked if they would choose to become a nurse again, the answers shed interesting light on the job. One in four nurses said they’d choose a different career path, while up to 70% said they’d choose a different specialty or practice setting.

Let’s consider some reasons why they might feel this way.

  1. The Hours Are Long

On paper, a nursing job looks amazing. Three days a week, 12-hour shifts, and four days off all to yourself. Sounds perfect, right?

The reality for most nurses is very different. By the time you factor in your commute and communicate with other nurses at the beginning and end of each shift, expect 15-to-16-hour workdays.

And that shortage we talked about earlier guarantees you’ll get calls on your days off begging you to come in. Because you’re a dedicated professional, you’ll usually end up saying yes!

  1. A Nursing Job Takes Its Toll

Sure, you’ll have moments when you sit in front of the computer, but most nursing tasks are physically demanding. You’ll be on your feet for hours at a time, helping to move patients in and out of bed, and you’ll do plenty of other heavy lifting too.

In addition to aching feet and a sore back, it’s not uncommon for nurses to experience burnout too. The stress of dealing with people who are sick or dying takes its toll, and nursing abuse is sadly common in many settings. Your job also involves being a mediator, a janitor, a waitress, and other roles outside of your medical duties.

For these reasons, long term disability insurance for nurses is vital if you pursue a nursing career.

Is Nursing Life the Life for You?

There’s no doubt that nursing life is a rewarding one. Helping others is a fulfilling lifestyle, but you have to be prepared for the realities of a nursing job too.

Before you sign up for nursing school, make sure you’re on board with all the points listed above!

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