The article “Nursing interventions for the management of patients with mania” by McColm et al. (2005) gives details concerning the definition, diagnosis, and treatment of patients who suffer with the psychological disorder of mania. The problem is one concerning the mood of the patient, which is often much more elevated than is safe and wholesome for the healthy individual. Because the disorder has to do with a person’s perception of reality and the behaviors exhibited as a result of this, the article relates well to the issues examined within the Psychiatric Nursing arena.
The ideas of reason and madness are closely tied to the manic disorder, and the article gives a distinctly nursing perspective on the treatment, as it outlines precise ways in which the nursing professional should deal with such a patient. These methods include efforts at maintaining and preserving the patient’s physical health by minimizing the adverse effects of the mental disorder on his/her actions.
The nursing methods presented in this article also indicate the importance of providing psychological and emotional support to the patient. Overall, the fact that psychological reasons behind the disorder are highlighted and treatments given from that perspective indicate the relevance of this article to the Psychiatric Nursing class.
Despite the fact that diagnosis is not the predominant role of the nurse, information given within the article concerning the signs, symptoms and prognosis of manic disorder provides information that allow the nurse to recognize and understand such a disorder.
The nursing interventions indicated for patients suffering from mania range from mild to acute measures—from counseling and support to “rapid tranquillisation” (McColm et al., 2005). The psychological support to be give by the nurse includes the development of a relationship of trust between the patient and nursing professional. The nurse is urged to show consideration for the emotional and psychological needs of the patient, while also taking care to monitor the impact of the patient on others within the environment.
The nurse is also encouraged to seek an understanding of the physical risk the patient poses to himself and others. This highlights the need for research into the behavioral history of the patient through developing relationships with family and friends. Once the nurse has gained such information, continued monitoring and observation should provide knowledge of behavioral changes that might prove harmful to the patient. Such information includes the patient’s attitude toward nourishment, aggression, harmful or addictive substances, and even sexual activity.
In treating these, nurses are encouraged to offer food and drink in manageable form and on a regular basis if the patient is observed to neglect such care of him-/herself. For example, drinks low in caffeine and food low in sugar would help control the patient’s hyperactivity. The nurse should also make sure that the atmosphere in which the patient is housed is one that promotes tranquility and discourages aggression. Yet this should be balanced with the patient’s need for intellectual, emotional and physical stimulation, which should be regulated by the nurse to help him/her get rid of extra energy or stress.
The empathic nature of nursing is also stressed by this article, as nurses are often in the position of becoming confidant to the psychologically ailing patient. This addresses the relationship of trust and respect that nurses are challenged to build between themselves and their patients. The nature of the manic disorder dictates that patients might sometimes become embarrassed about their behavior.
Nurses should provide patients with the appropriate level of confidentiality, encouragement and support that derives from their understanding of the patient’s situation. Furthermore, nurses should be so aware of the patient’s current and previous emotional states so that the descent from mania beyond optimal recovery and into depression will be quickly identified and prevented. Finally, nurses should be concerned with preventing the patient’s relapse, and this involves the education of the patient and his/her family regarding the causes and dangers of mania.
McColm, R. et al., (2006). “Nursing interventions for the management of patients with mania.” Nursing Standard. 20(17), 46-49.