A Holiday Gift Guide for your Nursing Student

On the heels of fellow nursing student Rachel’s post about what she’s thankful for, and with the holiday season right around the corner (or fully upon us depending on which retailer you ask) I thought it might be fitting to put together a holiday gift guide for the nursing student in your life. While the best gift is keeping a straight face and replying “No” to your nursing student’s “Do I look tired?” question, unfortunately you can’t get that off the rack. So, here are some alternatives:

  1. Compression socks. Yes, mine are white and knee-high, but that doesn’t mean yours have to be. Retailers like Nabee and Zappos sell them in considerably more attractive colors and patterns. They work by promoting venous return to the heart (The More You Know) so you don’t finish your day at clinical looking like an elephant.
  2. An indestructible watch. Roughly 9 out of 10 hospital room clocks are non-functioning and I’m afraid you can’t count a respiratory rate or a pulse using the shifting of the sun as a timer. I would suggest a watch that is not only waterproof but also able to withstand an end-of-shift scrub with a Clorox wipe.
  3. A coffee mug. Because prayer and a smile might not be quite enough to get you all the way through finals. The folks over at Good Housekeeping did your research for you, choose wisely.
  4. Hand lotion & assorted dry skin repair accessories. Wash your hands upon entering a room. Wash your hands when you leave. Wash your hands before A, B, and C. Wash your hands after X, Y, and Z. The minds behind hand sanitizer didn’t quite factor in the frequency with which nursing students use the stuff. I figure anything good enough for Norwegian fishermen is good enough for me.  And I may or may not be eyeing these to realize my dream of looking like Minnie Mouse in my sleep.
  5. Your student’s favorite writing implements. And lots of then. I cannot count the number of pens I have lost at clinical. Somewhere in the hospital there is a secret room filled floor-to-ceiling with my missing pens. My lost socks are probably there, too. And they are both probably laughing at me.
  6. A pedicure. There’s no wrong time for a pedicure but the end of a clinical rotation is an especially right time for one.
  7. 12 million thread count sheets.  I fully intend to spend the first few days of winter break hibernating and I imagine your nursing student does too. Last year, the end of first semester coincided with me being hit with an extremely stubborn cold. Here’s hoping I don’t have a repeat this year, but either way, I want my bed to be prepared.
  8. An all expenses paid tropical vacation. I may have confused “gift guide” with “wish list” but I’ll just leave this suggestion here in case someone stumbles upon it. I accept check or money order and my mailing address is available upon request.

Happy holidays!

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