When it comes to hospital, boredom is certain to occur. Whether you are an inpatient or visiting for an appointment as an outpatient, the feeling of boredom will most likely arise. What sucks the most about feeling bored at a hospital is you usually can’t just get up and do things, if you have appointments to attend this can get very frustrating not knowing how long you will be waiting for and not being able to go anywhere in case the doctor comes. I myself have experienced a fair bit of boredom over my time in hospital lying in bed and I still experience it now when I go to hospital for my regular check-ups and MRI’s. I can assure you it’s not fun having absolutely nothing to do! Because of my experience with this I have been able to come up with different ways to deal with this feeling and create some better times in hospital!
Inpatient: When receiving treatment in hospital the days can feel like they are going on forever. Here are some things that might make your day just a little more interesting
- Meet some friends
Meeting new people in hospital was one of the best things for me when dealing with boredom. I met many people from so many different places, they weren’t all the same age but that didn’t matter, in fact most of them weren’t in hospital because of cancer! I met some great inspiring people in hospital that I will never forget and we got up to so many fun and exciting things each day.
- Get a new exciting book
If you are into reading this tip will be in your interest! Picking up a new book or rereading a book/series you absolutely love can help take your mind off the time and also gives you a little freedom from treatment and cancer.
- Watch a movie
Many hospitals are now equipped with televisions and video players. If yours has one, ask the staff to watch a movie! My hospital supplied various movies and you could borrow them to watch whenever you liked. If your hospital doesn’t supply this, try and find a portable DVD player so you can watch movies too!
- Make a list of things you would like to do when you finish treatment
Not being able to do everything you wish to do can be really devastating; but while you have this free time it would be great to really think about what you might want to do in the future and even set some goals. You really can do whatever you put mind to.
- Talk to a Physiotherapist or Occupational Therapist about some activities you might be able to do
When I was in hospital I had a great occupational therapist who was always looking for ways to keep me entertained. I was able to go swimming in the hydrotherapy pool, bake cakes and muffins, play board games and so much more! Ask your doctors if you can talk to someone about doing some entertaining activities.
- Get to know your doctors and nurses
The nurses and doctors taking care of you can honestly make your experience 100 times better! Talking to them when they come and check on you is a great way to get to know them and they can make everything better.
- Take a walk to the hospital garden or park and get some fresh air
If you're given permission to go for a walk, see if your hospital has a public garden or park. Go have a look and sit in the fresh air. Sometimes just sitting in the fresh air can make you feel so much better, especially when your trapped in hospital.
- Take a trip to the shops
If you know someone who is nearby your hospital or if someone is coming to visit you in hospital ask your nurses and doctors if you are allowed to go out for an hour or two. Sometimes this will not be allowed depending on the stage of treatment you’re in but there is no problem with asking! Getting out and about is so good and having just that hour or so free from the hospital can put you in such a better mood and mindset.
- Create a new music playlist
Listening to music in hospital is the best. Maybe it’s time for a new playlist or some new songs to listen to? There are so many people out there who often share their own playlist so have a look online and find something new to listen to.
- Call an old friend or family member
Talking to someone you love can really turn your day around and make it so much more entertaining. Give that friend you haven’t talked to in ages a call, or give a family member a call.
- Get creative
If you’re the creative type, see if you can get your hands on some craft supplies and do some scrapbooking, painting, drawing or anything that puts a smile on your face!
- Find different cancer support groups and pages
Cancer can be lonely, have a look online for some support groups or pages that can help you along your journey. Talk to the staff at your hospital to see if they know any other support groups and pages.
- Have a rest
Sometimes just taking the time to have a rest can be beneficial to you. Hospital is very tiring and resting up can also take some time away.
- Try on some new wigs, head scarfs and beanies
Some hospitals support foundations and organisations that provide wigs and head scarfs to cancer patients, ask a social worker at your hospital if you can try some different ones on. Doing this always made my day so much better!
- Invite a friend to visit you in hospital
Friends are a great way to be entertained on a boring day! Call a friend and see if they have time to visit you in hospital for the day.
Outpatient: After and during treatment, outpatient appointments often occur. Some days you can end up waiting to see different doctors all day, this can get frustrating. Here is a list of ideas to keep you from getting bored while waiting!
- Bring a friend
Going to the hospital by yourself isn’t fun. See if a friend or family member will join you for your appointments. This can make the experience much more exciting and enjoyable!
- Catch up on any school or university work that needs to be done
Have any school or university work you need to catch up on or make a start on? Sitting all day at a hospital is a great way to do the things you need to get finished.
- Go for a wander around the hospital
If you know you have a long wait ahead of you before seeing doctors or specialist, go for a little wander around the hospital and see what else they offer. Just be sure to notify the administration that you are just going for a walk.
- Have a bite to eat at a nearby café
Many hospitals have cafes either inside or some outside on the street. If you have a long wait let the administration know you are going out and go enjoy yourself.
- Read a book
If you love to read books this is a great time to do the thing you love! Remember to bring some books along to your hospital so you can read while you wait! This is a great way to keep yourself entertained.
- Do some planning
Do you love to keep your life organised? While sitting at the hospital plan your life for the next few weeks. Bring your diary, calendar or whatever you use to keep on track to your appointments.
- Listen to some music
Listening to music is one of the easiest and simplest ways to keep yourself entertained and all you need is a phone and some headphones and you are all set!
- Play some card games
Another fun thing to do is play some card games. If you have someone waiting with you bring some games and enjoy playing with a friend or family member.