Chemically Impaired Nurses Essay

1055 Words Dec 5th, 2010 5 Pages
Chemically- Impaired Nurses

Jaime Littles
Christina Mazzeo
Sociology 101 Research Paper When deciding to enter the stressful and demanding field of nursing, I asked myself how will I physically, mentally, and emotionally deal with the demands of the profession? It takes a lot of long hours, knowledge of procedures and practices, and devotion to patients and their families. So how do nurses deal with the demands of their job? It has surprised me that in researching the profession that ten to twenty percent of practicing nurses have substance abuse problems. Substance abuse is defined as using excessive amounts of drugs or alcohol beyond their specified purpose. I chose to research this particular social problem
…show more content…
If the initial drug use is defined as pleasurable, it is likely to reoccur, and over time the individual will earn the label of “drug user.” If this definition is internalized so that the individual assumes the identity as a drug user, the behavior will continue. A symbolic interactionist’s solution to this problem may be early education about drugs and alcohol to children to deter the behavior before it begins. Second, a functionalist perspective uses scientific approaches to deal with social issues. A functionalist would look for data in drug use among nurses such as deaths, arrests, loss of medical licenses, etc. Functionalists argue that society provides us with norms and guidelines on alcohol and drug use. Drugs are seen as very functional. They alleviate pain, reduce fevers, and curb infections. A functionalist’s solution to drug abuse is to provide guidelines for behavior. People who lack control are more likely to pursue destructive behaviors. A solution could possibly be early intervention. Provide nurses with an outlet to discuss their feelings or work concerns. Shorter shifts and less patients to care for would also alleviate stress. The final perspective would be the conflict perspective. The conflict perspective would suggest that the abuse of drugs and alcohol plaguing the nursing profession would be directly attributed to social class, income, and power. If the nurse was given more power in the workplace and was not overworked and

Related Documents