Effective Therapeutic Nurse Client Relationships With Mental Health

3086 Words13 Pages
Suffering from a mental illness can be debilitating and overwhelming, not only for the client, but their family members, as well. As front-line workers, mental health nurses are responsible for developing a rapport and building a foundation with this particular population. In doing so, psychiatric nurses can positively impact client care outcomes, allowing the client to experience optimal levels of holistic care. Effective therapeutic nurse-client relationships with mental health clients must be developed and maintained by nursing staff in order to provide their clients with the best care possible. In fact, The Registered Nurses Association of Ontario (RNAO) states that “the therapeutic nurse-client relationship is central to all nursing…show more content…
161). Furthermore, both Erikson’s and Freud’s psychodynamic theories indicate that trust is a basic, innate need in all human beings (Berk, 2012, p. 16). Thus, trust is a crucial component in all interpersonal relationships, especially the therapeutic nurse-client relationship with psychiatric patients. Additionally, it is vital for the psychiatric nurse to understand the importance of both the development and maintenance of the client’s trust within the therapeutic relationship. Without trust, the psychiatric nurse does not have a solid foundation on which to build upon in order to develop a therapeutic relationship with his or her clients. As a result, a lack of trust between client and nurse could result in the inability to develop a therapeutic relationship, negatively affecting the quality of patient care. In order to establish trust with his or her clients, the mental health nurse must act and present oneself in a manner that instills a positive feeling within the client from the first interaction. Nursing staff can accomplish this by: introducing him or herself in a professional manner, actively listening to client concerns, and clearly outlining relationship boundaries of both the staff and client. Mental health nurses can also instill trust in their clients by: following through on commitments, demonstrating honesty and consistency, and treating
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