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    Hi everyone

    I'm finding it very difficult to pick between mental health nursing and occupational therapy. My first choice years ago was MH nursing but then I ended up doing other things and decided I wasn't going to uni. I have a serious fear of maths for some reason and the main thing that put me off was the drug calculations. I'm scared I kill someone or something like that! I think OT sounds really rewarding too and I have some work experience for that. Also there's more variety of what you can go into but I don't know how common it is to get into mental health and that's what I really want to do, if I found out I couldn't go into that then I wouldn't do OT

    Basically I'm just wondering if people could give me their experiences of their first year doing MH nursing. Are the drug calculations extremely hard? I've had a look online for drug calculations and they look hard to me but I've chatted to nurse students that I know and they've told me that it's mostly things like "if someone needed 500mg and the tablets came in 250mg then how many would you give them" but I'm finding it really hard to believe.

    I know that I'm caring and I really want to help people so I think I would make a good nurse that way but I just can't decide how I would get on academically. I'm doing access course at the moment
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    (Original post by Staceyc1990)
    Hi everyone

    I'm finding it very difficult to pick between mental health nursing and occupational therapy. My first choice years ago was MH nursing but then I ended up doing other things and decided I wasn't going to uni. I have a serious fear of maths for some reason and the main thing that put me off was the drug calculations. I'm scared I kill someone or something like that! I think OT sounds really rewarding too and I have some work experience for that. Also there's more variety of what you can go into but I don't know how common it is to get into mental health and that's what I really want to do, if I found out I couldn't go into that then I wouldn't do OT

    Basically I'm just wondering if people could give me their experiences of their first year doing MH nursing. Are the drug calculations extremely hard? I've had a look online for drug calculations and they look hard to me but I've chatted to nurse students that I know and they've told me that it's mostly things like "if someone needed 500mg and the tablets came in 250mg then how many would you give them" but I'm finding it really hard to believe.

    I know that I'm caring and I really want to help people so I think I would make a good nurse that way but I just can't decide how I would get on academically. I'm doing access course at the moment
    Drug calcs generally consist of conversions such as doses from milligrammes to grammes, tablet calculations like the one you've posted, infusion rates such as you have to give a litre of saline over ten hours, how many mls per hour should it be given at, drip rates and some stuff to do with percentages.

    It's pretty much GCSE level maths, as long as you're comfortable with long multiplication, division, fractions, percentages and so on you should be fine. For university admission tests a lot of places put practice papers on their websites and recommend the GCSE bitesize site for practice. There's a load of different books you can get to help with drug calcs and most universities realise that it's something students worry about so they tend to put on a lot of support for students with this. In the end universities don't want you to fail, they have the support there and the means for you to be able to pass, you've just got to be willing to put the effort in
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    Oh god it sounds worse than I realised I really do need to get over this hate of maths. I've been trying to do some on bbc bitesize etc. I'm going to get a maths tutor once I'm back home (I'm working in Channel Islands atm). When your a student on placement your mentor would always double check everything??
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    (Original post by Staceyc1990)
    Oh god it sounds worse than I realised I really do need to get over this hate of maths. I've been trying to do some on bbc bitesize etc. I'm going to get a maths tutor once I'm back home (I'm working in Channel Islands atm). When your a student on placement your mentor would always double check everything??
    You won't and can't administer anything without your mentor being there with you. You're also not allowed to give anything IV until you're a registered nurse.

    Have a look at some of the example tests universities put on their websites, that gives you something to aim for at first, once you've got that sorted and have a place at uni they can help you with the rest. Are you planning on doing an access course? Sometimes they can help with this or you could always do a numeracy course.
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    Thanks so much for your help. I did have a look at the uni tests a while ago, some I was fine with and some not so much.. But if I go right from the start again and work up then I'm sure I'll remember things and start to understand them.

    Yeah I'm doing access course at the moment, I'm doing maths right at the end so it's fresh in memory and I can get a tutor while home if really needed. Otherwise I'll just use bbc bitesize etc. Is there anything else you would recommend I look at to get ready for the course if I was accepted? I was planning on starting to look at anatomy etc although that's part of my course anyway. Are you enjoying doing MH nursing?
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    (Original post by Staceyc1990)
    Thanks so much for your help. I did have a look at the uni tests a while ago, some I was fine with and some not so much.. But if I go right from the start again and work up then I'm sure I'll remember things and start to understand them.

    Yeah I'm doing access course at the moment, I'm doing maths right at the end so it's fresh in memory and I can get a tutor while home if really needed. Otherwise I'll just use bbc bitesize etc. Is there anything else you would recommend I look at to get ready for the course if I was accepted? I was planning on starting to look at anatomy etc although that's part of my course anyway. Are you enjoying doing MH nursing?
    I'm an adult trained nurse, not MH and I thoroughly enjoy my job

    There's no harm looking at some A&P if you really want to, do you cover it as part of your access course? I think some places do. From what I remember the access students when I was at uni tended to be the best prepared for the course, they seemed much more organised than me (though that doesn't take much) and they knew a lot of the stuff we were being taught in the first year already.
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    (Original post by moonkatt)
    I'm an adult trained nurse, not MH and I thoroughly enjoy my job

    There's no harm looking at some A&P if you really want to, do you cover it as part of your access course? I think some places do. From what I remember the access students when I was at uni tended to be the best prepared for the course, they seemed much more organised than me (though that doesn't take much) and they knew a lot of the stuff we were being taught in the first year already.
    Ahh sorry I just assumed you were MH. I'm glad you enjoy your job

    Yeah I do A&P as part of my course and I picked some psychology type units as well like human behaviour etc so hopefully if it stays in my tiny brain I should be okay lol

    My main problem is my work experience and personal statement, I don't know what to write. I have some OT experience and my finished personal statement is about OT. I'm going to try and gain some work experience at the hospital when I come back
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    (Original post by Staceyc1990)
    Ahh sorry I just assumed you were MH. I'm glad you enjoy your job

    Yeah I do A&P as part of my course and I picked some psychology type units as well like human behaviour etc so hopefully if it stays in my tiny brain I should be okay lol

    My main problem is my work experience and personal statement, I don't know what to write. I have some OT experience and my finished personal statement is about OT. I'm going to try and gain some work experience at the hospital when I come back
    Have a think about how you could relate the stuff you've done getting experience for OT to nursing. You'd be surprised. They can be seen as similar roles with a lot of cross over. An OT is there to help people who struggle to meet their activities of daily living and comes up with solutions for them, a nurse helps patients perform their activities of daily living (amongst other things) when they can't manage.
 
 
 
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