Patient positioning is a critical aspect of the nursing practice. Patient positioning involves maintaining a patient’s good body alignment by constantly changing their position in a systematic way. Other principles of patient positioning should also be considered.
Positioning patients properly is very important for a number of reasons including airway management, ventilation, controlling unnecessary exposure, and most importantly for physiological safety.Here’s a short list of 5 common patient positions essential for nurses to know -
The Fowler position is recommended for patients suffering from respiratory, cardiac or neurological problems. In these positions keep the patient’s feet in alignment with a footboard.
Patients who are suffering from breathing problems are placed in the tripod position as it allows expansion of the chest and makes breathing easier.
Patients who have undergone any type of surgery are generally placed in this position. It helps them recover while giving them comfort.
In this position, the patient lies on their abdomen with their head turned to one side. This position allows the hips to flex while also allowing for full extension of the knee joints.
This position is for patients who are either unconscious or who have undergone surgery of the mouth or throat. A pillow under the head, along with a towel roll under the abdomen, is placed to provide support to a patient lying in the prone position.
Lateral position helps relieve pressure on the sacrum and heels and is a much needed relief for people who sit for most of the day.
Patient positioning is an important aspect of patient care services and is part of a nurse’s job. That’s why, to be truly effective, nurses must know about all of the different patient positions.
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