How to Survive Hospital Boredom

How to Survive Hospital Boredom

Some may have noticed a bit of a break on the old blogging / social media front.  Apart from scheduled posts things have been a little quiet from me.  Unfortunately that was due to me taking a rather unscheduled break due to a lovely stay in the hospital.  Lucky me!

It was rather interesting comparing a German hospital to a British hospital.  After all it was only four years ago since I had a lovely 10 night stay at a hospital, when I had the boys. 

So what differences did I notice?

  • There is an abundance of fizzy water, tea, coffee and fruit tea in Germany.  The coffee is also pretty good not the machine stuff that we get in the UK but the real deal!
  • German nurses tend to leave you be, the focus is on rest and recuperation.  So you get a box with your meds for the day in the morning, you are in charge of taking them, and they leave you be.  However you just need to ring the bell if you need anything.  I am perhaps too British for this type of thing and felt incredibly awkward about ringing the bell.
  • You can leave and go out for walks.  This was amazing to me and I loved the I could escape the confines of the ward and have some fresh air
  • You get your main meal at lunchtime.  So this is more German culture, rather than just the hospital.  You get your large meal at lunchtime, and a small snack at dinner time.  I would say the large meal is better than meals in UK hospitals.  However dinner, not so much.  See for yourself here:
  • There are no visiting hours.  I think this differs for those in intensive care, but on the general wards people can visit whenever they like.  Providing they are not disturbing other patients.
  • There are no curtains for privacy in shared rooms.  I found this really odd, I am so used to having the standard British curtains around the beds that I felt very open and exposed.

So all in all the differences level out, some are better – fizzy water on tap! – and some not so much – I refer back to the dinner picture once again!

This leads me nicely to my top tips….

How to survive hospital boredom! 

  • Plenty of snacks, preferably healthy ones (you are in hospital after all) but the odd piece of chocolate will help see you through.
  • Headphones.  If you are in a shared room like me, headphones are a must to listen to music, the radio or watch a bit of TV.
  • Laptop.  No not for blogging, but for watching DVD’s.  Trust me you will thank me.  I sent a text to hubby on day 3 and said bring laptop and girlie films.  He did quite well, Bridget Jones, Twilight and a few seasons of Cold Feet. Job done.  Oh and a bit of comedy with Spaced and Black Books for good measure.
  • A puzzle book.  I don’t usually do puzzles.  I don’t usually have time.  However, when faced with a long stay in hospital jail, I needed something to keep me occupied.  It turns out I am pretty good at sudoko and Word Count puzzles.  Who knew!?
  • Magazines.  Although I will be honest, with not much else to do a magazine doesn’t last very long!
  • Books.  Both on iPad – for when you can’t sleep at night and don’t want to disturb your neighbour (remember no curtains!) and real books (so you are not staring at a screen the whole time)
  • Visitors.  I have saved the best for last.  But the best way to feel occupied is to have plenty of visitors to keep you company.  I was lucky enough to have two little energetic four-year-olds visit me every day to take my mind off things.

Is there anything you would like to add to this list? Let me know in the comments.

Have you ever experienced a hospital stay abroad?  How did it compare?


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