Therapeutic Relationship in Nursing
Every day nurses interact with numerous people; the most important of these are their patients. For this interaction to be meaningful and have a positive impact on the health outcomes of the patient, the nurse needs to build interpersonal connections with the patient to form a therapeutic relationship. The nurse also needs to be aware of the patient’s culture and practice in a culturally safe way when establishing this relationship. In this essay the main characteristics of both interpersonal connectedness and the therapeutic relationship will be described using relevant literature. It will then go on to describe culture and cultural differences and then finally discuss how the cultural difference of the patient speaking a different
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The therapeutic relationship also has to have professional boundaries. These boundaries specify the scope of practice that is deemed safe for both the nurse and patient through legal and ethical restrictions (Stein-Parbury, 2009). Professional boundaries advise nurses to be helping professionals committed to achieving health care goals instead of friends or judges (Arnold & Boggs, 2011). However the boundaries should be interpreted with professional judgement and not set in stone, as boundary crossing may be acceptable if it is of benefit to the patient. For example hope may be offered to the patient through nurse self-disclose of a personal experience (Stein-Parbury, 2009).
Every therapeutic relationship is unique; however they all begin at a superficial level with social conversation and very little self-disclosure (Stein-Parbury, 2009). Some relationships stay at this superficial level and are termed as practical. These relationships are characterised by the nurse providing procedural care that the patient is satisfied with, often routine procedures such as blood pressure monitoring or cervical smear test (Stein-Parbury, 2009). On the other hand, other relationships evolve past this level and have a high level of trust, self disclosure, acceptance and understanding. Often