Therapeutic Communication Reflective Essays

Reflective Essay on Communication

2285 WordsApr 30th, 201310 Pages

In this essay, I intend to reflect on a situation I encountered during my first community placement I had the opportunity to develop my communication skills not just theoretically but also practically, facing a real life environment. My placement made me aware of the importance of interpersonal and communication skills which are very important in the delivery of care. Throughout my nursing career, I will be encouraged to develop reflective practice skills and become a reflective practitioner. Reflection refers to a series of steps that you may take to question and explore an experience with the aim of learning from it. I will discuss the importance of communication in order to maintain a therapeutic relationship.

In this reflection, I…show more content…

For example, an eye gaze will not be used by people with severe visual impairments.

Effective communication in the healthcare setting improves recovery rates and reduces pain and complication rates. (Wilkinson et al, 2003). Many complaints to the NHS are attributed to poor communication. Effective communication is reliant on the nurse working in partnership with the patient. It is essential that the nurse establishes a rapport and most of this will be achieved through the use of facial expressions. In my practice, it is important that develop a therapeutic relationship with the patients so that they can be able to put their trust in me. The therapeutic relationship is solely to meet the needs of the patient. In this relationship, there is a rapport established from a sense of mutual understanding and trust. To build a good nurse-patient relationship, I would have to show qualities of empathy, caring, sincerity and trustworthiness. During practice, if I am approaching a patient and the patient looks anxious, I should approach with empathy.

Self-awareness is the key to understanding the reasons why some interactions are successful and why others are not. Realising how much previous experience can affect us and how certain triggers can produce a response that surprises us, is a process that can take a long time. Issues of transference and counter-transference bring understanding as to why some

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can become more involved in their own care.In this piece of reection I did not have to obtain consent from patients as I generalised and have not discussed individualcases. However condentiality is of major importance whilst conrming a patient and it is essential that informedconsent is valid as each patient has the right to keep their caring need private. Riley (cited in Cutcliffe et al 2005, p304)suggests that therapeutic relationships are about patient’s disclosure of personal and occasionally painful feelings withthe nurse at a calculated emotional distance near enough to be involved but objective enough to be of help. Neal (citedin Hinchliffe et al 2003, p102) states that condentiality and trust are two sides to the same coin and trust is anotherimportant attribute to the therapeutic relationship as the patient will place their trust in the nurse. You can get expert help with your essays right now. Find out more...This element is important as in the nurse patient relationship the patient is in a vulnerable position. People become vulnerable whenever their health or usual function is compromised. This vulnerability increases when they enterunfamiliar surroundings, situations or relationships.Older patients and those with dementia are especially vulnerable. I felt on the placement the patient’s could put theirtrust in me as when taking personal information from patients I would ensure to the patient in the early stages of therelationship that information provided is treated as condential, but will be shared on a need to know basis, with othersinvolved in the delivery of their care.Even something as simple as when I put a patient on the commode and I inform them I will be back to check on them inve minutes I always return straight away as I told them and if I was tied up I would ask one of my colleagues to check on them this helps to maintain their trust in me.Chambers (cited in Cutcliffe et al 2005, p308) states that empathy is also an important feature to the therapeuticrelationship and suggests empathy is the ability to recognise and understand the patient’s feelings and point of view objectively. According to Riley (cited in Cutcliffe 2003, p93) empathy expressed verbally conveys caring, compassionand concern for patient’s but never implies that the nurse can fully experience patients feelings, also listening is animportant element as it is critical to hear what the patient is saying, verbally and non verbally. Smyth (cited in McQueen2000, p723-731) suggests that our personal experiences can make a contribution to their emotional work and ability toempathise and by reecting on personal experiences nurses may be better able to identify with patients. Whilst I was on placement and listening to the patients concerns and worries, using qualities mentioned by Hinchliff elat (1998, p225) of care, concern, compassion and respect I explained that it was a natural reaction to feel nervous andunsettled and this helped to lesson their underlying anxieties. In order to be genuine it was necessary to be honest andput some of my own feelings into the situation like getting into their shoes and trying to see things like emotions andexperiences from their perspective where possible.Chambers (cited in Cutcliffe 2005, p308) states that therapeutic relationship differs in terms of focus, length, depthand degree of closeness, regardless of this; they need to be grounded in respect for the patient. Getting the message of respect to the patient can be done in a number of ways as part of the therapeutic relationship like making sure that allconversations take place in private, whilst the doctors are doing ward rounds being present, listening and validating

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