NURS 2459 Mental and Behavioral Health Discussion

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NURS 2459 Mental and Behavioral Health Discussion





You are required to give a minimum of two responses and follow the criteria listed below:

  • Review how your classmates achieved each course competency and transferable skill.
  • Identify new knowledge others gained you had not considered.
  • Describe how this new knowledge could impact your nursing practice


Competencies are defined by the needs of the professional workforce that students join after they graduate. There are bundles of the essential knowledge, skills, and attitudes required to achieve the necessary level of performance in the workforce. There have been increased cases of mental and psychiatric conditions in the recent past. With this rise, psychiatric nurses need to be trained to gain insight and experience managing these patients and addressing their health concerns. The course has helped open up the psychiatric nursing practice.

According to Blakey (2018), the legal issues have in psychiatric nursing have evolved, and nurses are now held accountable to practice according to current laws and practice. Therefore, nurses need to operate within the scope of maintaining the highest standards of practice. I learned different ethics of psychiatric care, which relate to confidentiality, beneficence, justice, and autonomy. As a psychiatric nurse, some of the interventions I learned while caring for mentally ill patients are assessing the patients’ mental state: history taking techniques, physical examination, and mental status assessment. They also establish a good rapport with the client and skills on how to provide patient-centered care.

Through studying this course, I have learned how to provide health education to clients with different psychiatric conditions. For instance, for those with anxiety and stress-related disorders, health education will be meditation, daily exercises, deep breathing, distraction, and progressive muscular relaxation (Carpenter et al., 2018). In addition, there are particular groups at a higher risk for mental health conditions like those with a family history of mental health problems, chronic medical conditions, traumatic experiences, and past abuse.

The psychiatric nurse should develop transferable skills while in mental health practice. Essential skills that I have learned are how to create a client rapport before beginning an interview, active listening, empathy, compassion, record keeping, and maintenance of ethics (Booth et al., 2017). With this knowledge, I am now better placed as a psychiatric nurse to provide safe and quality care to all clients with psychiatric conditions in a multidisciplinary way.


Mental and behavioral health has thought me so much about how I tried to understand people and their behaviors and most importantly the defense mechanisms we used as humans to get by in society. Mental health is also defined as a state of well being in which an individual realizes his or her own abilities. How they cope with normal stresses of life, how we work productively and fruitfully, and how we contribute to our community.

In mental health, I learn that every individual has a defense mechanism we use to help with our anxieties. Some defense mechanism are good and some are not. For example I learned that sublimation and altruism are good defense mechanisms used by people. The same applies to the types of admission in mental health care setting. There is voluntary and involuntary admission in mental health. What is more important to know as a nurse is that whether the client is voluntarily or involuntarily admitted in the clinic, they both have the right to informed consent, they have the right to refuse medication and also the right to leave if they are not a threat to themselves and others.

As I am learning everyday and understanding mental health, I also learn that before you take any action as a nurse to intervene with a client that cannot calm down and is threatening to harm self or others, the nurse is given right to apply restraints after trying other less restrictive measures before applying a restraint on a patient. Once this is done, the nurse need to obtain a written prescription from the doctor within 24 hours. This client behavior will be monitored every 15-30minutes, offered bathroom use, given food and water and if client has calm down and showed no sign of aggression or resistance, they need to be taken off restraints.

Finally, I did understand that mental health is broad and can be sometimes complicated because we are learning about humans and the complexity of neurological conditions that can affect our mind and how we try to cope and fit in society in a normal way. Our job as nurses is to assess, educate and report our findings to the provider who will be responsible to come up with diagnosis for the client we serve. What I took out from my learning in this class is that, as nurses, we cannot judge, offer advice, give false reassurance to clients. Our job is to asses, advocate and report what we get from our assessment to the provider. Knowing your scope of practice vital as a nurse.

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