Yesterday on twitter I saw NHS Lothian posting about #endPJparalysis. I heard a little bit about it through the grapevine at work and around the hospital on the Tuesday. I didn’t get to see what was being done on Wednesday but from the photos there appeared to be a bed space set up in the main mall complete with locker and table with members of staff in their PJ’s.
It got me thinking about when I am in hospital and what I do. Other than hating being put in a gown and I will do all I can to not wear a gown I think it depends on where I am in hospital. Generally there is always a trip to ICU or HDU (or the past few years every admission involves one of the two) where sometimes a gown is essential just for ease to the staff but otherwise it tends to be a PJ kind of place. My PJ’s are generally t shirts and boxer shorts mainly because it is so hot but also a lot easier when dealing with IV lines in your feet, catheters, cardiac monitors, BP cuffs, oxygen, oxygen probes. You name it, its probably attached.
(despite appearances this is clothes. T shirt and shorts- yes I am using my oxygen to blow up my nephews front balloon, like I have the puff to blow it up!!!)
But once on the ward and feeling better other than last summer when the ward was so hot PJ’s had to be worn as they were the lightest clothes I had a the time. Generally and looking back at photos I have what I call my “hospital clothes” which is light weight joggers, shorts and t shirts, and flip flops. Then when its night I change into my PJ’s. It gives me some normality and makes me feel a bit human and also not the sick person (not sure how I feel not the sick person but wearing clothes makes me feel like I normally do as I don’t slob around in PJs at home). It makes the day seem more day like and as you do at home you wash, dress and get up. I try to do this in hospital. The one thing I am bad at is staying on my bed. I make my bed and get changed but I find that being quite tall the chairs are so uncomfortable and wearing joggers I just slide off them when I slouch!! So I prefer to stay on my bed and sit on it.
(this photo was taken when my friend dressed up to surprise me when I was in hospital for over 3 months. But despite the oxygen, nebs, IV lines, Im dressed in a golf shirt and comfy bottoms).
This last time I was in hospital I think it was the other ladies in the bay kept asking me why I got changed etc when I wasn’t doing anything or going anywhere. They all preferred to stay in their night clothes because they were sick and in hospital so thats what they should wear.
I do think that sometimes there is a time and place for night clothes. Like if in ICU or HDU or when quite unwell in the ward but if your up and about then you should be in clothes, not very smart but comfy stuff.
(post allergic reaction in HDU and not happy about being in a gown!!)
I fully support the #endPJparalysis. I find getting up and dressed makes you feel better. No matter how hard it is. Often the process of getting up washed and dressed is flanked by nebulisers at either side and sometimes even during a wash or something but it is worth it and all patients should be encouraged. Hopefully this campaign will see a change and less people will be sitting around in PJ’s but dressed in day clothes and save the PJ’s or nighties for bedtime!!!