Starting out Time out to take stock I DECIDED to take a month off from work to get back to reality and to re-energise after my trip to China as a nurse in the Butterfly Children’s Hospice. I enjoyed my trip but I needed a break too. I had been on the go since I finished my training and my internship as a nurse in January. When we nurse sick and vulnerable people, our physical, emotional, social and psychological selves are challenged. It is difficult for nurses to recognise when they need a break – they spend so much time caring for others that they often forget to care about themselves. This is why nurses can get burned out easily. If I am being honest, it was difficult for me to relax at the beginning of my break because I am a proactive person. I realise now that it is important to recognise when you need a break and to take time out to focus on yourself and do things you enjoy. Nurses always want to do their best for their patients and to give them the best care they deserve. However, it is impossible to do that unless you take breaks and escape from it all for a short while. This is a philosophy that I will try to stick to throughout my nursing career and something that I will always advocate to colleagues. I enjoyed my break, but I am glad that I have finally started my new job as a children’s intensive care nurse in a UK hospital. I have just come to the end of my local and NHS trust induction, which has given me useful information and help that will enable me to settle quickly in my new job. It was significant for me because this is my first paid job as a staff nurse. I have never worked for the NHS or in an intensive care setting. I know that I have so much to learn in the intensive care unit, but I am looking forward to new experiences and to building up my nursing knowledge as much as I can. Lisa Kirwan is a staff nurse at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in London

14 May 2015 | Volume 27 | Number 4

Book reviews The Secret Language of Your Child David Lewis Souvenir Press Second edition 288pp | £12 ISBN: 9780285642997

A FUN and well-written text that takes the reader into the world of the silent language of young children. The author has studied how under-fives communicate with each other through facial and body expressions. Lewis provides a delightful insight into the meanings of children’s expressions during what is often described as a time of intense cognitive and emotional development. He notes that, from an early age, girls pay more attention to their peers’ expressions and gestures than boys, suggesting a more social side to their nature. It is a useful resource for those interested in child development and behaviour, such as teachers and healthcare professionals. I particularly enjoyed how to interpreting a smile and the hidden truths in family snaps. It has made me look at how I interacted with my children, as well as my role as a children’s nurse, making me more aware of the baby cues of a neonate and the behaviour of a child. Valerie McGurk, practice development nurse, Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust

Missing Microbes Martin Blaser Oneworld Publications 288pp | £8.99 ISBN: 9781780746883

THIS AUTHOR presents the case for how an over-reliance on medical treatments is leading to what he sees as the next global plague. Using science to support his theories, he takes the reader on a journey of discovery, challenge and consideration. He links the rise in conditions such as asthma, allergies and ulcerative colitis to evolutionary factors. He also

Doing a Literature Review in Health and Social Care Helen Aveyard Open University Press Third edition 208pp | £19.99 ISBN: 9780335263073 THE COVER brought back memories of my first literature review as an undergraduate – a pitiful figure at a desk, transfixed by terror and crowded in by bookshelves. But turn the page and there is cause for hope, even joy. This book demystifies what is a long and complex process that can seem insurmountable. The author chaperones the novice through the literature review process, providing counsel on the scientific rationale for a systematic approach, as well as practical shepherding, on how to achieve this. The book offers an introduction to the techniques and obligatory mindset for systematic, rigorous searching, analysis and critical writing that, if done well, will produce reliable conclusions and insights. This is the companion I wish I’d had when I sat at a tiny desk stressing about a looming dissertation and concurrent night shifts. Students and nurses alike will value this guide. Clare Oakland, research nurse, research department of infection and population health, University College London

thinks climate change, and global travel and trade are having severe health consequences. The clear, crisp presentation puts forward a convincing argument: on the one side, microbes are seen as agents for good health, on the other, they are the perpetrators of illness. Will the overuse of antibiotics and the decline of vital bacteria be the downfall of the human race? And do those working in a modern health service need to respond? We used to that say children who were allowed to get dirty developed their own immunity. This book makes you wonder if this is true, and whether society’s obsession with cleanliness is doing more harm than good. Valerie McGurk, practice development nurse, Northampton General Hospital NURSING CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE

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Starting out--Time out to take stock.

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