It started with the aches. I thought, what did I do to my back? Did I pull it or something? Quickly I discovered I had a low grade fever, adequately controlled by Tylenol.
Next day, same thing, not nearly as well controlled. I thought I had some kind of weird vague virus that would pass.
Three days later I sit here in my bed after having to leave work early because my fever spiked, and I began having severe flu symptoms. Looking back, I probably should've called off yesterday, and now I feel TERRIBLE because I'm the one who's "patient zero," potentially exposing my patients and coworkers to what appears to be the flu.
My coworkers, genuinely concerned for my health, were slightly upset that I had to leave early, and gave a look that said, "Who did this poor girl give it to?"
So I ask on behalf of the new nurses, when is it okay to tough out the little stuff and when do you need to call off?
I feel like I've been surrounded by an attitude of "Don't call in sick unless you're actually dying," but it really doesn't seem appropriate. Even sometimes the little stuff can have a big impact on your patients.