Nurses have to be cautious all the time to provide the best treatment possible. To do this, a nurse has to pay attention to every aspect of the patient’s well-being. What creates this focus is awareness – self-awareness, and awareness of surroundings and patient’s state in particular. Thus, a nurse has always to use all of their senses (eyesight, hearing, smelling, touching, and, although less important, tasting). All of these five senses provide a vast amount of information about the patient as well as about the environment which they are put in. Needless to say, that the patient’s environment is of utmost importance, as it had always been since the environmental model of healthcare was invented.
However, one may wonder how each of the senses works in separation. Well, eyesight’s benefits are obvious. The patient’s appearance may alarm a nurse about many potential threats, thus requiring them to make sure that the patient feels well and does not suffer from any pain. The hearing is mostly used to evaluate the patient’s surroundings, but it is also used to check the patient’s breathing or to hear if, for example, the patient had collapsed. When evaluating the environment, a nurse has to make sure that it is not too noisy so that the patient may rest and recover well. Smelling, in turn, allows noticing any potential malfunctions in the patient’s body. Certain smells may alarm a nurse that something in the patient’s body does not function well. Thus, a nurse will change the treatment or establish it. Touching, on the other hand, is used directly to check the patient’s body temperature or to assess the skin’s condition or to check for any possible hidden trauma that cannot be detected otherwise.
Finally, taste is useful, too. However, this sense is used very rarely because of its natural limitations. After all, tongue’s ability to differentiate between sensations is insufficient.