Spiritual distress Nursing Care Plan Example

Spiritual distress Nursing Diagnosis, Spiritual distress Nursing Care Plan and Solved Spiritual distress Nursing Case Study

NANDA Definition: Disruption in the life principle that pervades a person’s entire being and that integrates and transcends one’s biological and psychosocial nature

This blog post discusses Spiritual distress Nursing Diagnosis, Spiritual distress Nursing Care Plan and Solves a Spiritual distress Nursing Case Study. As you follow along, remember that our qualified writers are always ready to help in any of your nursing assignments. All you need to do is place an order with us!

Disclaimer: The information presented in this article is not medical advice; it is meant to act as a quick guide to nursing students for learning purposes only and should not be applied without an approved physician’s consent. Please consult a registered doctor in case you’re looking for medical advice.

Defining Characteristics

  • Expresses concern with the meaning of life/death and/or belief systems;
  • questions moral/ethical implications of therapeutic regimen;
  • describes nightmares/sleep disturbances;
  • verbalizes inner conflict about beliefs;
  • verbalizes concern about relationship with deity;
  • unable to participate in usual religious practices;
  • seeks spiritual assistance;
  • questions the meaning of suffering;
  • questions meaning of own existence;
  • displacement of anger toward religious representatives;
  • anger toward God;
  • alteration in behavior/mood evidenced by anger, crying, withdrawal, preoccupation, anxiety, hostility, apathy; gallows humor (inappropriate humor in a grave situation)

Spiritual distress Nursing Related to Factors:

  1. Challenged belief and value system (e.g., due to moral/ethical implications of therapy, intense suffering);
  2. separation from religious or cultural ties

NOC Outcomes (Nursing Outcomes Classification)

Suggested NOC Labels

  1. Dignified Dying
  2. Hope
  3. Spiritual Well-Being

Client Outcomes

  1. States conflicts or disturbances related to practice of belief system
  2. Discusses beliefs about spiritual issues
  3. States feelings of trust in self, God, or other belief systems
  4. Continues spiritual practices not detrimental to health
  5. Discusses feelings about death
  6. Displays a mood appropriate for the situation

NIC Interventions (Nursing Interventions Classification)

Suggested NIC Labels

  1. Spritual Support
  2. Coping Enhancement
  3. Emotional Support

Nursing Interventions and Rationales

  1. Observe client for self-esteem, self-worth, feelings of futility, or hopelessness. Verbalization of feelings of low self-esteem, low self-worth, and hopelessness may indicate a spiritual need.
  2. Monitor support systems. Be aware of own belief systems and accept client’s spirituality. To effectively help a client with spiritual needs, an understanding of one’s own spiritual dimension is essential (Highfield, Carson, 1983).
  3. Be physically present and available to help client determine religious and spiritual choices. Physical presence can decrease separation and aloneness, which clients often fear (Dossey et al, 1988). This study showed an overwhelming response that client’s faith and trust in nurses produces a positive effect on client and family. Spiritual care interventions promote a sense of well-being (Narayanasamy, Owens, 2001).
  4. Provide quiet time for meditation, prayer, and relaxation. Clients need time to be alone during times of health change.
  5. Help client make a list of important and unimportant values. The number one need expressed by clients who had been hospitalized, which was expressed by persons of all denominations and faiths, was for their pastor/rabbi/spiritual advisor to not abandon them. For those who did not belong to a religious/spiritual group, their number one need was to at least be asked for some type of religious/spiritual preference (Moller, 1999). Clients are experts on their own paths, and knowing their values helps in exploring their uniqueness (Dossey et al, 1988).
  6. Ask how to be most helpful, then actively listen, reflect, and seek clarification. Listening attentively and being physically present can be spiritually nourishing (Berggren-Thomas, Griggs, 1995). Obtain permission from theclient to respond to spiritual needs from own spiritual perspective (Smucker, 1996).
  7. If client is comfortable with touch, hold client’s hand or place hand gently on arm. Touch makes nonverbal communication more personal.
  8. Help client develop and accomplish short-term goals and tasks. Accomplishing goals increases self-esteem, which may be related to the client’s spiritual well-being.
  9. Help client find a reason for living and be available for support. “The need for a positive attitude for optimum healing was by far the most commonly mentioned subtheme by these participants and the strongest area of literature” (Criddle, 1993).
  10. Listen to client’s feelings about death. Be nonjudgmental and allow time for grieving. All grief work takes time and is unique. Acceptance of client differences is essential to open communication.
  11. Help client develop skills to deal with illness or lifestyle changes. Include client in planning of care. Clients perceived the experience of healing as an active process and expressed a desire to take conscious control (Criddle, 1993).
  12. Provide appropriate religious materials, artifacts, or music as requested. Helping a client incorporate rituals, sacraments, reading, music, imagery, and meditation into daily life can enhance spiritual health (Conrad, 1985).
  13. Provide privacy for client to pray with others or to be read to by members of own faith. Privacy shows respect for and sensitivity to the client.
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See care plan for Readiness for enhanced Spiritual well-being.

Spiritual distress Nursing Care Plan Geriatric

  1. Assist the client with a life review and help the client identify noteworthy experiences.
  2. Discuss personal definitions of spiritual wellness with the client. Listening attentively and helping elderly clients identify past coping strategies is part of helping with life review and finding meaning in life (Berggren-Thomas, Griggs, 1995).
  3. Identify client’s past sources of spirituality. Help client explore his or her life and identify those experiences that are noteworthy. Client may want to read the Bible or have it read to them. Older adults often identify spirituality as a source of hope (Gaskins, Forte, 1995).
  4. Discuss the client’s perception of God to the illness. Different religions view illness from different perspectives.
  5. Offer to pray with client or caregivers. Prayer was described as an important part of spirituality by caregivers (Kaye, Robinson, 1994).
  6. Offer to read from the Bible or other book chosen by client.- A religious ritual may comfort the client.
Spiritual Distress Nursing Diagnosis, Spiritual Distress Nursing Care Plan And Solved Spiritual Distress Nursing Case Study
Spiritual distress nursing diagnosis, spiritual distress nursing care plan and solved spiritual distress nursing case study

Spiritual distress Nursing Care Plan Multicultural

  1. Assess for the influence of cultural beliefs, norms, and values on the client’s ability to cope with spiritual distress. How the client copes with spiritual distress may be based on cultural perceptions (Leininger, 1996).
  2. Acknowledge the value conflicts from acculturation stresses that may contribute to spiritual distress. Challenges to traditional beliefs are anxiety provoking and can produce distress (Charron, 1998).
  3. Encourage spirituality as a source of support. African-Americans and Latinos may identify spirituality, religiousness, prayer, and church-based approaches as coping resources (Samuel-Hodge et al, 2000; Bourjolly, 1998; Mapp, Hudson, 1997).
  4. Validate the client’s spiritual concerns, and convey respect for his or her beliefs. Validation lets the client know the nurse has heard and understands what was said (Stuart, Laraia, 2001; Giger, Davidhizer,1995).
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Spiritual distress Nursing Care Plan Client/Family Teaching

  1. Teach guided imagery, story-telling, meditation, and the use of silence. Guided imagery, metaphors, meditative prayer, and prayers of silence are effective spiritual approaches the nurse can implement when caring for the patient with cancer (Brown-Saltzman, 1997).
  2. Consider using art to express spirituality. This author tells a personal story about the activity of drawing flowers with her daughter and how it helped to explore spiritual issues (Toomey, 1999).
  3. Encourage family and friends to visit and show their concern. Social networks support spiritual well-being (Young, Dowling, 1987).
  4. Encourage family and friends to support client’s belief through prayer. Positive effects of prayer include rapid recovery and prevention of complications (Byrd, 1988).
  5. Include directions to hospital chapel when orienting client and family to hospital unit. Attendance at services and a visit to the chapel may be important to the client and family.
  6. Refer client to spiritual advisor of choice. Nurses must collaborate with chaplains and relate to clergy to provide spiritual care for patients and families (VandeCreek, 1997). Caregivers who use religious or spiritual beliefs to cope with caregiving have a better relationship with care recipients, which is associated with lower levels of depression and role submersion (Chang, Noonan, Tennstedt, 1998).
  7. Prepare for chosen religious rituals. Some religions may have ceremonies associated with healing and illness.
  8. Refer to counseling, therapy, support groups, or hospice. The client may need more support and ongoing spiritual assistance.

Spiritual distress Nursing Care Plan Example


Spiritual distress Nursing Case Study

Nursing Assessment

Mrs. Sally Horton is a 60-year-old hospitalized homemaker who is recovering from a right radical mastectomy. Her primary care provider told her yesterday that due to metastases of the cancer, her prognosis is poor. This morning her nurse finds her tearful, stating she slept poorly and has no appetite. She asks the nurse, “Why has God done this to me? Perhaps it’s because I have sinned in my life. I’ve not gone to church or spoken to a minister in several years. Is there a chapel in the hospital where I could go and pray? I’m terribly afraid of dying and what awaits me.” Spiritual Distress related to feelings of guilt and alienation from God as evidenced by questioning why “God has done this”; inquiries about praying in a chapel; insomnia; no appetite

Spiritual Health [2001] as evidenced by

  • Interacts with spiritual leader of her religion
  • Uses a type of spiritual experience that provides her comfort
  • Connects with others to share thoughts, feelings, and beliefs

NURSING INTERVENTIONS for Spiritual distress Nursing Care Plan

Spiritual Support [5420]  
Be open to Mrs. Horton’s feelings about illness and death. Encourage her to list values that guide behavior in times of tragedy.
Assist her to properly express and relieve anger in appropriate ways. Anger can be a source of energy and its release a source of freedom when expressed in a constructive manner.
Observe and listen empathetically to her communication. The nature of spiritual care may directly affect the speed and quality of recovery and/or redefining hope and finding meaning in death.
Encourage the use of spiritual resources, if desired Spiritual needs may sometimes be overlooked or ignored. Recognizing and respecting the individual’s spiritual needs is an important advocacy role for nurses.
Coping Enhancement [5230]  
Create an accepting, nonjudgmental atmosphere. Establishes rapport and the therapeutic relationship, which promotes communication and open expression.
Encourage verbalization of feelings, perceptions, and fears. Allow time for grieving. Being with the person who is suffering gives meaning to his or her experience.
Encourage her to list values that guide behavior in times of tragedy. Helps the client clarify values and beliefs by reflecting on past behaviors. Experience is a major source for values development
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Outcome met. Mrs. Horton has been visited on several occasions by her minister. She reads scripture each day and has

Nursing Care for Spiritual Distress: A Case Study Example

Question Description

In the chapter titled “Spiritual Assessment” in your course textbook, there is a case study describing parents who have spiritual concerns related to their daughter’s health care. The nursing diagnosis of spiritual distress is made based on the assessment data. You are required to provide at least 1 short-term outcome and 3–4 nursing interventions that will aid in attaining the outcome.

Spiritual Distress Nursing Diagnosis, Spiritual Distress Nursing Care Plan And Solved Spiritual Distress Nursing Case Study
Spiritual distress nursing diagnosis, spiritual distress nursing care plan and solved spiritual distress nursing case study


Based on your own experience and from your readings in this course, the Argosy University online library resources, and the Internet, address the following:

Read the case study in the chapter “Spiritual Assessment” in your course textbook, and based on your understanding, answer the following questions:

  • What are the factors causing spiritual distress for this family?
  • What are the short-term outcomes related to the diagnosis of spiritual distress in this case study?
  • What are the priority nursing interventions in this situation?
  • What are your thoughts, feelings, and/or concerns related to caring for this family including why you think this self-reflection may be important as you provide nursing care?

Submission Details:

  • Write your initial response in a 2- to 3-page Microsoft Word document.
  • Your response should be thorough and address all components of the discussion question in detail. Include citations of all sources, where needed, according to the APA style. Demonstrate accurate spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Use this APA Citation Helper as a convenient reference for properly citing resources.

By the due date assigned, copy your response from your document and paste it in the Discussion Area. In addition, post your Microsoft Word document as an attachment. Through the end of the module, review and comment on at least two classmates’ responses.

Do the following when responding to your classmates:

  • Read your classmates’ responses.
  • Provide substantive comments by doing some or all of the following:
    • Contribute new, relevant information from course readings, websites, or other sources
    • Build on the remarks or questions of others
    • Share practical examples of key concepts from your professional or personal experiences
  • Respond to feedback on your posting and provide feedback to your classmates on their ideas.
  • Make sure your writing:
    • Is clear, concise, and organized
    • Demonstrates ethical scholarship in the accurate representation and attribution of sources
    • Displays accurate spelling, grammar, and punctuation

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