Here’s what nurses really want for Christmas

Christmas is almost here, and that means things could be getting busier around the hospital. Unlike other professions, you might not get to take long vacations. Many nurses opt to work the holidays so they can earn extra money, which doesn't leave much time for holiday shopping. If you're still trying to decide what to get for your co-workers, here's a quick list of things nurses really want for Christmas:

1. A travel mug
Nurses are on the move quite a lot. In fact, one study published in the National Library of Medicine found that the average nurse walks between 2.4 and 3.4 miles each day. That's like walking a half marathon every six days! And all of that walking requires energy. A travel mug with a secure straw and lid can be filled with nutritious smoothies, energy-boosting iced coffee or water.

2. Gel insoles and comfy socks
Socks might be a cliché Christmas gift, but if anyone can really appreciate them, nurses will. With all that walking, foot soreness can be a big problem. That pain can make it difficult to concentrate on patients and work effectively. Give the gift of comfort with a pair of cozy socks or some heavenly gel insoles.

Nurses deserve a little rest and relaxation for the holidays.Nurses deserve a little rest and relaxation for the holidays.

3. A spa gift certificate
Nurses spend their days taking care of others, so why not give the gift of self-care this holiday season? A gift certificate to a spa is just the thing nurses need. A good Swedish massage will work out their muscle knots and a clay mask will make their skin look vibrant and healthy. Plus, it's just a good reminder to stop and assess one's own personal mental health, which nurses may otherwise neglect.

4. Enamel pins
It can be hard to make a fashion statement while wearing scrubs, but a nice pin can add a touch of flair and personality to the uniform. Cute or interesting pins also make good conversation starters. When speaking with anxious patients, having an icebreaker can make a nurse's job much easier. You can find enamel pins on sites like Etsy​. They come in all kinds of designs, so you can make your gift extra personal. Pins featuring animals, sports teams or pop culture characters can put patients at ease.

5. Tote bag or backpack
Nurses often have to carry multiple items to and from work, as well as between different areas of the hospital. A good bag can be an indispensable piece of equipment. Depending on your co-workers' personalities, you could opt for a bag with something humorous printed on it, or one that's extra sturdy and will last a lifetime.

6. Scented hand lotion
Hospital workers usually come home smelling of antiseptic hand sanitizer, which they have to apply regularly when visiting patients. While it's not an unpleasant smell, it's nice to have a bit of variation. Scented lotion can give off pleasant aromas and even prevent the dryness that comes from frequent hand washing.

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