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Importance of Psychology in Nursing

Nursing is a broad field that integrates various disciplines to provide holistic patient care. One vital aspect is psychology, which involves understanding the relationship between the body and mind and their effects on a patient’s health. You must understand the importance of psychology in nursing to balance the patient’s emotional and physical health requirements and establish close relationships. Keep reading this blog to understand the integration of psychology into nursing practice, the benefits, and methods of psychology.

Define psychology in nursing.

Psychology in nursing is the act of dealing with patients with mental health problems. Psychology is used in nursing to protect patients and their families from emotional and physical damage. Nurses use psychology to establish relationships with patients and gain insight into their thoughts. Having great psychological knowledge as a nurse will help you create awareness and assist individuals to improve their stress management, attitude, and behavior in everyday challenges.

Importance of psychology in nursing

Nurses provide care and support to patients. Nurses apply psychology to improve their relations with patients. Psychology helps nurses understand how a patient reacts to different situations, which helps improve patient outcomes and address mental health issues. It also helps nurses to manage burnout and stress and provide consistent quality care. The following are uses of psychology in nursing and their benefits;

  1. It improves communication

Psychology helps nurses communicate effective communication with their patients. When you understand the patient’s psychological state, it’s easy to tailor your communication style to meet their needs. For example, for a depressed patient, you should motivate and encourage them.

  1. It helps build rapport with patients.

Psychology helps nurses build rapport with patients by understanding the patient’s communication style and personality. This will help establish a positive relationship with the patients, making them feel more comfortable and willing to cooperate with their care.

  1. It helps develop a good nursing care plan.

Nurses make vital decisions regarding the proper treatment of a patient. The patient’s physical and mental state influences the decision to create a healthcare plan. When formulating a care plan, you must note the patient’s emotional and physical state details. You should also conduct psychological assessments and encourage patients regarding their situation.

  1. It treats mental health issues.

Psychology helps nurses understand patients’ mental health issues, such as anxiety, substance abuse, or depression, hence providing more effective care. Incorporating psychological interventions in the care plan will help improve patients’ well-being and manage their mental health.

  1. It helps manage burnout and stress.

Nursing is demanding and stressful, and nurses experience burnout at some point. Psychology will help you prevent burnout and manage stress by teaching you stress management techniques and coping mechanisms, which will help you provide better patient care.

  1. It helps nurses adjust to the professional environment

The nursing profession enhances teamwork as different entities must work together to ensure patient success. Psychology helps nurses understand their colleague’s behavior and personality and adjust to the professional environment. This knowledge helps nurses to collaborate with other nurses and overcome professional challenges.

  1. It provides quality nursing care.

Psychology helps nurses provide better patient care by understanding its principles. It helps nurses understand crisis interventions, positive thinking, conflicts, and attitudes, improving nursing care.

Methods of psychology in nursing

Psychological research involves understanding complex human behavior and mental processes and collecting demographic, physical, psychological, and physiological. Data Psychologists use various research methods to gather reliable and accurate data depending on the research type. Below are methods of collecting psychology research data;

  1. Observational method

An observational method is a qualitative and non-experimental method that involves observing the subject’s behavior and do not use any equipment for data collection. To use this method, you should identify the research area, note observations, and analyze relevant data. You should be aware of the actual research area, the qualities to observe, what to avoid, and the effective methods to collect and analyze data. There are various types of observational methods, including;

  • Controlled observation

Research in a controlled observation is conducted in a closed setting. The researcher manipulates variables per the research needs and study participants’ behaviors.

  • Naturalistic observation

In naturalistic observation, the researcher observes the subject in a natural or real-life setting, such as open environments, homes, institutes, schools, etc., without manipulating the situation or observed phenomenon.

  • Participant observation

In participant observation, you, as an observer, become part of the study, and other participants are not informed about your presence as an observer but recognize you as a group member. You can interact with the group and make conclusions regarding members’ perceptions, which will help reduce research bias.

  • Non-participant observation

In non-participant observation, you, as the observer, don’t participate in the study but observe the behaviors and activities of individual group members using other means. For example, you can set a camera to record in the room under observation.

  1. Experimental method

Psychologist uses an experimental method to test the relationship between variables such as a patient’s mental health and behavior. You can also use the method to measure whether a change in an independent variable affects a dependent variable. The change is the event affecting the dependent variable. Independent variable is the variable manipulated by the researcher. Below are the types of experimental studies;

  • Quasi experiment

In a quasi-experiment, you study how independent variables affect dependent variables without manipulating them.

  • Field experiment

In Field experiments, you conduct research in the natural environment and real-life settings like hospitals, schools, industries, etc. Field experiments are more ecological than lab experiments but are time-consuming and hard to control undesired variables.

  • Lab experiment

Lab experiment is conducted in a controlled manner to avoid being interfered with by external variables like weather, noise, sunlight, etc.

  1. Case study

For a case study, the researcher conducts a thorough analysis and qualitative research on a particular area under investigation. It allows you to develop theories, assess features, and discover information regarding a particular case. Psychologist uses this method to understand the impact of a traumatic event on psychological health and diagnose various psychological disorders.

  1. Survey research method

Survey research helps researchers understand events’ reality through other people’s social views, behavior, attitudes, and opinions. This method can help you understand people’s preferences by obtaining data directly from them. Below are techniques used in survey methods;

  • Digital survey

In digital surveys, researchers communicate through direct messages, e-mails, social media, or calls. Digital surveys do not consume much time and are easy to conduct.

  • Direct interviews

In direct interviews, the interviewer communicates directly with the interviewee to obtain in-depth results. The interview may be structured or unstructured. The session can be one-to-one, individual to a group, group panel, or group to a group interview.

  • Questionnaires

Questionnaires are well-structured questions distributed to people to write or mark the answers. This method is confidential, less time-consuming, easy to conduct, and cost-effective.

  1. Content analysis

Content analysis is a method to acquire valuable information in a specific area by analyzing content pieces such as text, articles, and interviews or data for your study. It involves data collecting, analyzing, formulating theories and rules from the data, and making conclusions.

  1. Psychological testing

In psychological testing, psychologists use scientifically proven tests to examine different human characteristics such as aptitude, attitude, emotional quotient, intelligence quotient, and personality. When designing psychological tests, you should consider factors like qualifications, age, and gender as they inform the necessary test procedure. The criteria for formulating the tests follow a systematic approach, standard values, validity, and reliability.

  1. Correlational research

Correlational research is used to evaluate how the two independent variables relates. For example, you can conduct correlation research to determine the effect of yoga on psychological health. You can present the relation between the two variables in the range from a positive figure to a negative figure. There are three types of correlation: zero correlation, negative correlation, or positive correlation.

Psychological aspects of nursing

Psychology is the study of people’s behavior and attitude. As a nursing psychologist, you should prevent and treat acute illness and improve patient’s health. You should also understand how patients recover from illness and react to treatment to help you improve patient care performance. Various psychological issues affect nursing professionals, including anxiety, depression, social isolation, loss of control, disturbed body image, and disturbed self-esteem.

You must understand the main psychological aspects affecting physical, emotional, and mental health. Nurses research to prevent behavior such as smoking and drinking excessing alcohol, unhealthy living, and educate individuals on managing weight and keeping fit.

Wrapping up

Psychology is vital in nursing as it helps prevent health conditions and illnesses caused by emotional and physical factors. As a nurse, you must understand the relationship between a patient’s physical well-being and mental health. Psychological interventions and understanding the mind-body connection will help you improve patient outcomes and promote well-being. Explore the importance of psychology in nursing provided in this blog to improve patient outcomes and well-being.