At this new beginning, make new resolutions and kick off 2023 with a positive mindset and healthy lifestyle.
Being a travel nurse can make mental health struggles challenging. Continuous work hours, night shifts, sleep deprivation, and lack of a support system disturb their routine and affect their overall health. It develops more uncertainty, stress, and change; this amplifies and exacerbates mental health issues.
Besides this, travel nursing allows you to experience new places, meet new people, and positively impact patients’ lives. However, this unique career path also has challenges, particularly in maintaining health and well-being.
Whether a professional travel nurse or starting, you must stay healthy and maintain your wellness to keep yourself ready for others’ care. To do so, follow the health and wellness tips for travel nurses in 2023.
So, let’s begin your journey towards a healthier and more balanced life as a travel nurse in 2023!
Health & Wellness Tips
Ask yourself if you’re practicing self-care, eating well, or getting enough sleep.
If not, schedule changes in your routine and make yourself worthy of living.
Let’s discuss some health and wellness tips for nurses to help them regain a healthier lifestyle.
According to U.S. research, work-related stress causes 60% of travel nurses to encounter poor physical and mental health. In this fast-paced era, mental stress lets negative emotions burden your mind. Yet, there’s nothing more crucial than self-care.
No matter what, it’s challenging to tackle stress, but you can add specific activities to your routine to take off stressors.
Travel nurses should relax and recharge through meditation, exercise, reading a favorite book, walking to a park, or enjoying a friend’s company.
Refrain from burdening yourself with exhausting morning and night shifts. Learn to say no when you cannot tackle specific tasks or perform night shifts. Thus, prioritize your physical and mental health to restrict negative emotions. Maintain a balance between your work and life.
Get Quality Sleep
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s research, one-third of Americans don’t get an average amount of sleep. Doctors recommend people sleep for eight to nine hours at night. But it gets tricky for travel nurses to maintain their sleep schedule as traveling disturbs sleep cycles.
Poor sleeping habits can lead to increased stress, depression, irritability, grumpiness, and poor health. Therefore, travel nurses should schedule their daily assignments to manage quality sleep habits.
In addition, night shifts are a common challenge; however, they should keep a pack of earplugs, sleep masks, or black-out curtains to block the sun’s rays and sleep in a noisy environment without any distractions. Also, try to get enough sleep when you’re on holiday or have headed on vacation.
Limit caffeine intake, particularly in the afternoons or before bed—a secondary factor that can disrupt your sleep-wake cycle.
Practicing exercise every day improves your physical and mental health. It strengthens your muscles and bones, helping you to stay healthier. Even 20 to 30 minutes of exercise boosts your mental fitness and reduces clinical depression.
Daily exercise is a better way to stay fit and active throughout the day. Set up an exercise routine before or after work to feel calm and relaxed. It’ll refresh your mind and make you feel light, active, and comfortable.
Furthermore, exercise not only means lifting heavy weights, but jogging, walking, performing yoga, and other activities, such as cycling, are also forms of exercise. Although, travel nurses may not get time to exercise daily due to burdensome assignments. However, they can join a gym on weekends to maintain their physique.
Traveling is daunting, especially when you have to travel within weeks. As a travel nurse, you should make a plan for yourself. Along with work, it is critical to give yourself time.
It also disturbs your exercise routine, so try to find ways to stay active during this period. When you get the chance, go for a walk during breaks or find a local gym.
Even so, staying hydrated, eating healthy meals, and having enough rest also help you feel fresh and relaxed every day, and you can practice your nursing duties peacefully.
So, set aside time for morning exercise, visit a gym, perform different hobbies in your leisure time, and other outdoor and indoor activities to keep your body and mind active, thoughtful, and energetic.
Change Eating Habits
You’ll always find fast food tempting but go for healthy meals while traveling. Carry snacks and meals that can stay fresh for a longer time, such as fruits, nuts, and protein bars.
Maintaining your vitamin and calorie intake ratio is essential to avoid burnout or dizziness. Therefore, travel nurses should pack fresh fruits and nuts when out for work. Nuts and dry fruits are good sources of energy to satiate hunger.
Furthermore, you should avoid eating unhealthy, unhygienic, oily, and sugary meals, so you don’t get ill. However, travel nurses must also list their diet to ensure they stay healthy and perform their services well.
Drink Plenty Of Water
Are you feeling exhausted or dehydrated? Drink 64 ounces or eight glasses of water daily.
Travel nursing duty is stressful, so plenty of water is a top secret to productive health. Water lowers fatigue, refreshes your mood, removes toxins, regulates blood pressure, and maintains homeostasis.
In addition, it’ll maintain your health and fitness and prevent headaches, constipation, urinary tract infections, and kidney failure.
Besides this, energy drinks are a great source to fulfill your body’s salt, sugar, and electrolyte requirements. However, soda drinks, juices, and carbonated beverages contain excess sugar, so cut them off your diet.
Improve Mental Health
Studies reveal that 18 percent of travel nurses experience depression due to job changes or location switches. To avoid this, travel nurses can schedule downtime before traveling to a new location. Jot a list of areas or famous places you want to visit.
Often, travel nurses feel stressed, so they must focus on their mental fitness to release stress. To do so, practice stress-relieving techniques or seek support from family, friends, or a therapist. At the same time, cognitive behavioral therapy proves best for releasing stress and fatigue.
In addition, you can strengthen your mental health by retreating yourself, adopting a new hobby, learning a skill, or having a quick catch-up call to communicate with your loved ones regularly.
Discover Your Hobbies: What do you like?
Is it running, climbing, hiking, brunching, board games, or book clubs? Whatever you like doing, there are places to do and enjoy it wherever you’re traveling. Whether you’re a yoga lover or an adventurous person, search for a local studio, join a gym with a temporary membership, explore new places, or ride to the city.
Moreover, spend your breaks or days reading good, informative books to develop energetic thoughts and boost positive vibes. Think about new hobbies. Write down your experiences of traveling to new places as a travel nurse.
Don’t let work become a hurdle in your way.
Pack A Yoga Mat & Hand Weights
If you’re feeling exhausted from your current assignment or a sweaty workout. Carry a yoga mat and hand weights in your backpack while traveling. Yoga is an excellent option for travel nurses, as they can relax their minds and body through yoga meditation. Look for yoga classes in your area, or check online tutorials.
During your free time, stretch your muscles, bend forward and downward, place a yoga mat, and practice with your coworkers. This meditation activity relieves tension and stress and keeps you healthy in the long run.
Every person should have a support system inside or outside their job. Being away from friends and family for long periods can be challenging, so stay connected with loved ones through phone calls, text messages, video chats, or watching a TV program.
If you’re feeling exhausted or tense, talk to your friends or coworkers; that can make a tremendous difference. Catch up with your loved ones on a quick video call, which will change your mood swings.
Among all other tips, this health and wellness tip for travel nurses in 2023 will shed your stress and make you look fresher than any other day before.
Do you need a support network?
Spend time with fellow nurses. Tell them what you’re going through, share your feelings and experiences, and have long conversations and discussions with them. This way, you’ll be able to build a support system, rely on someone, and relax your mind.
Q.1. What are the most common health and wellness challenges faced by travel nurses?
Travel nurses face a variety of health and wellness challenges. Some common challenges include:
- Stress and burnout
- Lack of sleep
Q.2. How can travel nurses maintain a healthy work-life balance?
Travel nurses should consider it crucial to maintain work and life balance; otherwise, they could face adverse effects on their health and careers. Here are some health and wellness tips for travel nurses in 2023 to help them achieve a healthy life.
First, establish a morning routine by scheduling daily assignments and tasks. Take time for meditation. Secondly, try to learn time management skills, set priorities, organize tasks, and tackle urgent ones first. Last but not least, improve your mental health through self-care and self-realization.
Q.3. How can travel nurses stay motivated physically when away from home?
Travel nurses can adopt specific travel nursing tips when away from home to stay motivated.
- Set fitness goals.
- Have a workout reminder.
- Check the calorie counter.
- Track your sleep.
The travel nurses’ assignment is for about 13 weeks or more, depending upon the contract with the travel nursing agency, which is exhausting for nurses. This tough duty affects their routine, and nurses also experience fatigue.
In such challenging times, travel nurses get deprived of health and neglect self-care because of a lack of time. This guide has simple and effective health and wellness tips for travel nurses to help them brighten their life and career.