Monday, November 11, 2019

Educating Inmates Part 2

As I mentioned in Part 1 my of Educating Inmates series, in this Part 2, I will be going over some of the outrageously dangerous misconceptions I have heard from inmates concerning their medications, drug use and diagnoses and how I have educated them - as well as some interesting, random facts on popular meds, illegal drugs and homeopathic medical treatments that might surprise you!!  So grab some coffee and enjoy ☕

Let's jump right into some misconceptions and downright dangerously uneducated statements I've heard from inmates 😷
    Link to Picture Home: WebMD
During one intake, I was going through all the normal questions concerning each of the body systems when I asked the newly incarcerated inmate to our jail (whom, might I add was a 'lifer' since childhood - meaning in and out of various jails for years and years) if he had any issues with his thyroid.  He immediately said no and then started to "educate" me on how only women have thyroids, men have Adams Apples and if I was going to be successful at nursing I should "learn how to do (my) job".  πŸ˜’  I let him ramble for a minute, curious as to what he was going to 'teach' me about thyroids and where he had learned this information from (and if I'm being truthful, just so that when I did correct him, he would feel as dumb as that statement was - he was being super, obnoxiously rude and acting like an ass with the CO's).  Then I politely gave him a proper education all about thyroids.  I went right for one of the reference books on the desk so I could show him visuals - I figured that would be the best way to convince this guy that he was absolutely wrong - and... it worked.  I, of course, gave him a quick verbal run down on how the thyroid gland works within the body as well but after showing him the visuals, he was obviously embarrassed about his statements and pretty much shut down.  I ended up writing up the verbal education points and giving them to him via kite per his request.  (if you are interested, HERE is a copy of the education I gave to him in writing) I still to this day have not had anyone apologize to me so much during one intake πŸ˜†  but my shock comes from how this guy didn't know this general information! 

Diabetes care.... oh boy!  Some of the doozies I get on this topic!! Care for Diabetes is very complicated sometimes - I get that - but in general there are a few key things that every diabetic should understand.  One being how to check your sugar!  It always shocks me when newly incarcerated diabetics check their sugar for me the first time (I always have them demonstrate to me how they do it out in the world the first time they check it in my jail).  Let me just start out with how to properly check it - wash your hands (!), get out your supplies (we're going to use a general finger stick check for this example), choose which finger you are going to poke, take and alcohol swab and wipe off the area (usually a top finger pad - tip: use the side of the ring finger when you can - it tends to not be used as much during the day so you end up with less soreness overall), wait for the alcohol to dry completely, put the test strip into the machine you will be using, poke the finger and suck up the drop of blood into the test strip, then wipe the finger poke area with an alcohol pad again (add pressure if your a bleeder), wait for the results and write them down.  That's it.  Simple. You would think....  I have had people lick their fingers to do a finger stick, ask to dunk their fingers into rubbing alcohol to clean their fingers, blow on the alcohol pad wetness to dry their fingers off, put their hand in their drinking cups to poke their fingers under the water, poke other parts of their body (like their palms, belly's, chests, legs, etc.) to get the drop of blood, not poke the area very well and then proceed to squeeze and squeeze the area around the poke to get a drop of blood out, attempt to 'drown' the test strip in blood - I could go on and on with different examples.  To educate inmates on Diabetes I take a simple approach.  I figure out their current levels of understanding on the care and maintenance of their diagnosis and then educate something small but useful EVERY time I work with them - so every time I have them check their sugar, every medication round, when I see them in the clinic or at the cell door - I always give them a small tidbit and then answer any questions they might have concerning the topic.  I find it's easier for people to understand and retain the education this way in this environment.  Follow ups with written information I put into their personal properties for reading when they are released unless they ask for it while incarcerated :)

"Injecting my meds works better for me"  This one I don't hear very often, but way more often then I should!!  The first time I heard someone say this was when I went to check on a newly incarcerated person, whom was passing in and out of conscientiousness within half and hour after being brought into the jail.  They had been injecting their Wellbutrin medications into their veins because they felt it worked 'better'.  He said that when he took it orally he couldn't "feel it" so he started injecting it and had slowly worked himself up to 1,500mg in one injection (in case your wondering this is a HUGE OVERDOSE - the normal dosaging for this medication is anywhere from 100mg to 450mg a day depending on the severity of symptomology that required the medication to be prescribed in the first place).  The majority of medications I have heard inmates say they inject, so they feel the effects quicker, are usually for mental health or pain medications.  THIS SHOULD NEVER BE DONE with any medications unless the Physician prescribes you an injectable!  In which case, it will come as an injectable already with instructions on use!!! Needless to say, education was given over and over and over to this one on how his medications actually work in the body and why he cannot inject them into his bloodstream!! 

From one of my illegal drug users: "I don't even aim for the veins anymore, it will get into my blood stream - as long as it's under the skin somewhere" 🀯  Holy Bejeezus.  She was so certain of this, she didn't even realize that all the 'bumps' as she called them (she thought they were 'extra drugs' that would be dispersed into her body and make her high when she pushed on them) were actually abscesses!!! Granted, she was still under the influence when I did part of her intake, but, oh boy!! She ended up with extended rounds of antibiotics and lots of educating on: A. why you should not put drugs into your veins in the first place and B. if you are going to anyway, why just injecting it under the skin is a BAD IDEA. (as a side note, I would never, ever teach anyone how to properly inject illegal drugs into their bodies - so education on how to inject was NOT given). 

Alright, enough stories for this part of the series - I could honestly go on for days! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜­  I'll be blogging about more of them in Part 3 πŸ˜‰  Onto some fun, random interesting facts about illegal drugs and homeopathic remedies you might not know about :)

⁈ Did you know that: Clove Oil is an amazing dental pain soother?  It numbs the area it's placed onto for a few hours AND has some pretty cool antiseptic qualities to help prevent infections!  Clove oil is available over the counter and can be purchased from Amazon (see hyperlink at the end of this paragraph)!! I love this oil for toothaches!! We were giving this as a toothache helper to our inmates before our supplier had a shortage and we had to switch over to a liquid oragel which does not work as well :(  Make sure if you try this that you don't get it all over your lips or skin - it can burn on those surfaces and dry them out!  And as always, with any medication make sure you don't have an allergy before use!!  Check out Clove Oil for Toothaches through my affiliate link with Amazon HERE

⁈ Did you know that: Methamphetamine use may worsen the progression of HIV/AIDS and its consequences? Studies have shown that HIV causes more injury to the nerve cells and damage to the cognitive functions of your brain when exposed to Meth. AND that you can test positive for Meth by breathing in the second hand smoke?  This means that even if it is not you that is smoking it, you can still fail a drug test for it!

⁈ Did you know that:  Zinc is an amazing homeopathic treatment to help reduce the duration of common cold symptoms in 50% less time!! Zinc is a naturally occurring mineral and is important to the growth and development of body tissues.  Too much zinc can be bad for you though, so always check with your primary physician before taking any kind of routine medication!  Zinc can be used via oral tabs, nasal sprays or via a nasal swab.  I recommend the nasal swabs - they are easy and only used during the duration of your cold.  You can purchase these over the counter at any drug store or through my affiliate link with Amazon HERE

⁈ Did you know that: Marijuana is toxic to dogs and there is NO antidote for them?  Dogs can be poisoned by marijuana in a couple of different ways - they can eat marijuana edibles like cookies, brownies or pot butter, eat the owner’s supply of marijuana (in any form, loose or still as a bud etc.) or by breathing in the owners second hand smoke. The symptoms of marijuana toxicity in dogs can include: sedation/lethargy, dilated pupils or glassed over eyes, dazed expression, difficulty walking, vomiting, either a low or high heart rate, vocalization such as whining or crying, agitation, trouble regulating temperature causing the body temperature to drop or rise and incontinence/dribbling urine, tremors, seizures and potentially coma.  Dogs can display signs of toxicity anywhere from 5 minutes to 12 hours after exposure and can last anywhere from 30 minutes to several days depending on the dose ingested!!

I hope you've enjoyed this part 2 of the Educating Inmates Series!!  For Part 3 I will be going over some of the exercises for both the mind and body that I teach to my inmates to help keep their bodies and minds healthy while incarcerated and of course some of the weird shit people have said to me concerning this topic πŸ˜†

Let me know what you think so far about the series!!  Is there anything in particular you would like more information about?  Have a suggestion on what Part 4 should be about?  Shoot me a comment and let me know!!

1 comment:

  1. People with chronic illnesses in correctional facilities should receive care that meets national standards.