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Therapeutic Communication Techniques Vital to Mental Health Nursing

  • Date Submitted: 11/25/2011 10:36 AM
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Therapeutic Communication Techniques Vital
to Mental Health Nursing

      In the field of nursing, as with any profession, there is constant evolution in the approach and techniques used within the scope of practice.   Many innovative therapeutic techniques, methods, and medicines are created influencing the care provided by nursing professionals.   Within the different levels of nursing, from fundamental to advanced nursing care, various methods are used to provide specific care related to the patients needs.   Within psychiatric nursing a fundamental technique practiced is constructing a therapeutic milieu (Varcarolis, E. M., & Halter, M. J., 2010, p. 41), which can then lead to the application of another basis technique: milieu therapy.   Milieu therapy, as defined in Foundations of Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing, A Clinical Approach, “takes naturally occurring events in the environment and uses them as rich learning opportunities for patients” (p.41).   A naturally occurring event of importance and the basis for this paper is communication between the mental health patient and nurse.   A study was performed to evaluate the effectiveness of an abstract concept known as “acknowledging communication” during patient and nurse interactions. Acknowledging communication: a milieu-therapeutic approach in mental health care is a manuscript reporting the study’s methods and findings which were gained through interviews of the study’s participants.   The manuscript lists three major themes: core conditions for acknowledging communication, the process of change in staff practice, and misunderstanding of acknowledgement in practice, that emerged in the study’s data (p.694) Embodied throughout the following pages are a description of said themes and their significance on therapeutic communication between mental health nurses and patients.
    First of the themes to arise is “core conditions for acknowledging communication”.   It begins by explaining the participant’s vague...


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