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Importance of Therapeutic Communication in Nursing

During their career, nurses need to communicate with patients and families in some way constantly. Therapeutic communication can vary from brief texts to phone calls to face-to-face visits.

Therapeutic communication in nursing care is extremely important as it has a direct impact on the outcomes for patients and families. If nurses have poor therapeutic communication skills, they risk failing their patients or family members and missing opportunities for improvement.

What is Therapeutic Communication? Therapeutic communication in nursing refers to sharing health-related information and experiences among healthcare providers, patients, family members, and other care team members to build trust.

It is an essential practice that enhances nursing care quality by providing opportunities for all participants to share information about their experiences with each other. This is one of the important skills taught in BSN programs. At the University of Indianapolis, you can now study a second degree online BSN program if you already have a relevant degree or are pursuing your first degree. This program allows you to spend more time with family, work on another degree, or care for sick loved ones at home. The programs are designed so that after completion, students can apply their skills to the field in which they wish to work.

Here are some of the essential points of therapeutic communication in healthcare:

physical therapy with nurse

Creates a Nonjudgmental Environment

As nursing care providers, the ultimate goal is to treat patients as individuals. When a therapist is present, they can provide emotional support without judgment.

This makes it easier for patients to explore their thoughts and emotions, which can lessen the amount of discomfort that they are experiencing. Patients can be open and honest with a therapist, especially if they want to receive treatment for an anxiety disorder or depression. Some may find it easier to talk about their emotions with a therapist rather than a nurse.

There are many health benefits to spending time outdoors. Sunlight helps the body produce vitamin D, essential for strong bones and muscles when outside. It can also energize patients if they have been feeling exhausted.

nurse talking with patient

Provides Encouragement

Therapeutic communication encourages patients to continue therapy because they know their counselor will be there for them. It also lets patients understand that their nurse is there for them and is active in their treatment.

Therapists can provide help with coping mechanisms and problem-solving skills that the patient needs to begin working on their mental health issues. They can also provide insight into situations or help the patient understand why they have anxiety or depression in the first place.

nurse talking to senior patient

Positive Communication

Therapeutic communication provides positive communication. This is about addressing the positive aspects of the patient and respecting them.

Therapists can use positive communication to let patients know that their actions to date have been helpful for their mental health issues. They can also use positive communication to congratulate patients for being able to participate in therapy sessions.

Positive communication may increase the therapeutic relationship between the therapist and the patient. A productive relationship with a therapist will encourage patients to continue with therapy. Additionally, it could result in patients seeking further help if they decide they would like more therapy sessions than initially planned.

Provides Help with Coping Mechanisms and Problem-Solving Skills. There are many ways that therapists can assist with coping mechanisms, problem-solving skills, and even goal setting for the patient. Therapy provides coping mechanisms for anxiety or depression in the short and long term.

Problem-solving skills can help make the patient’s long-term goals a reality, increase their ability to feel comfortable around others, and deal with uncomfortable situations.

Therapists can assist the patient in finding a healthy way to cope with anxiety or depression. The more therapy the patient receives, the more confident they can be in dealing with their mental health disorders if they reencounter them.

nurse communication with patient

Final Thoughts

A therapeutic conversation occurs when the nurse and patient interaction with one another in a respectful, authentic, and thoughtful way, taking each other’s values into account. Communication should focus on serving the patient’s and the nurse’s goals for care.

You can apply therapeutic communication concepts to any setting where individuals seek help from members of healthcare teams to create connections. A compassionate and caring environment should encourage an approach rooted in compassion over skills or knowledge.

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