Mental Health NCLEX Review
Welcome back to the free NCLEX Review blog from BrainyNurses.com!
Lets get right into it. Our topic for this weeks blog is Mental Health, one of the many subjects that you need to understand in order to successfully navigate the NCLEX. Through many years of on-the-job experience and continuing education, I have developed some of the helpful hints that are highlighted in this module that will help you be successful in your journey to finishing your nursing education and becoming registered.
Two common degenerative disorders that involve the brain are Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia. The progressive and permanent memory loss and personality changes due to damage within the brain structure and function. Vascular dementia is more rapid in onset because it is caused by a lack of blood flow to the brain.
In addition to those that are afflicted with these diseases, loss of brain cells can also occur due to the use of alcohol, tobacco, and exposure to pollution. This is for all patients and all conditions, not just dementia.
An easy way to remember the various causes of dementia for the NCLEX is to use the acronym DEMENTIA. If breaks down just like this
D = Drugs and Alcohol
E = Eyes and ear problems
M = Metabolic/endocrine disorders
E = Emotional disorders
N = Neurological disorders
T = Tumors and trauma
I = Infection
A = Arteriosclerosis
No matter the cause or stage of dementia, it is important to remember that dementia is a type of psychosis where the patient is not reality based. Treat by acknowledging their feelings and redirecting them.
Most of our nursing students stress that pharmacology classifications is something that they struggle with when preparing for examinations, including the NCLEX. If that includes you, we will touch on one of the pharmacology classifications that is important to consider in a mental health situation.
Benzodiazepines are a common class of medications that have many uses in practice, to include mental health disorders, alcohol withdrawal, muscle spasms, and to help with sleep.
As always, recognizing the potential side effects that the medication may cause is important for not only the NCLEX, but during your daily shifts. The side effects that are observed when administering benzodiazepines include:
- Blurred vision
In addition to these side effects, Benzodiazepines have three observed withdrawal symptoms that may be anticipated from patients requiring the medication:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Abdominal or muscle cramp
For a full list of Benzodiazepines that are commonly administered, refer to the flashcard below.
To wrap up this blog post, I would like to leave you with a flashcard that includes the potential lab effects for several pharmacology classifications. The classifications that are covered in this flashcard include:
- Cyclic Antidepressants
- Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors
- Non-Phenothiazines, Typical and Atypical Antipsychotics
- Acetylcholinesterase Inhibitors
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