The Typical Week of A Solopreneur and Pediatric Dental Surgery Nurse
Written by Brittney Bertagna, RN BSN
As both a business owner and nurse at a dental surgery center, there is always an endless to-do list. I’m a nurse who is a freelance copywriter and solopreneur, and I am responsible for everything when it comes to my business. From prospecting and onboarding the clients that I write for, and creating the deliverables that I provide them, there is always something that needs my attention.
A typical week
Working for myself as well as in an employee setting gives me a sense of balance that I love. In addition to the structure of a traditional nursing role, I have the creativity to transform my education and experience into something that can benefit others.
I work as an employee once per week which means I spend the rest of my week running and growing my business. On business days I find myself in a much slower pace than when I am working on the floor. Most days are spent at my computer, and my work revolves around my priorities of the day like working out, eating healthy, and socializing with friends or acquaintances.
Day in the life of a business owner
We all know that a typical day doesn’t actually exist as a nurse and it's the same for business owners. This means that I can wake up whenever I want, which more importantly means I can go to bed whenever I want, and still get the amount of sleep I require.
No matter what time I start the day, I always do my best to start with my routine, which starts with journaling. I do my best to not look at my phone, emails, or allow for any input from my physical surroundings before I begin brain-dumping everything that I can from the night before.
Journalling usually takes me around 30 minutes every morning, and it has served me well. I find that I’m able to get worries or confusion out onto paper. This allows me to determine what the priorities for my day should be, which can help me stay on track with my business goals.
Owning a business means going through ups and downs, so I block out time in my schedule for things that I know will have to be done that week. For instance, if I know that my client work for that week is going to be light then I will schedule out a plan for myself to be able to maximize the down time and get ahead in another area. At the end of my four days of solopreneurship, I’m eager for my one day on the floor.
Day in the life of a pediatric dental surgery nurse
An oddly specific job title but “pediatric dental surgery nurse” the best way to describe the job. I work in a surgery center for routine dental work for children who have extreme anxiety or fear of going to the dentist.
When children are uncooperative, it may be in the best interest of the child to have general anesthesia for their dental work. These children are referred to the surgery center. This facility has two independent ORs (operating rooms) that look like a typical OR, but instead of a table there is a dental chair.
Nurses are responsible for working in the OR or the post anesthesia care unit (PACU). The first surgery start time is 6 am. The OR nurse, where I typically work most days, arrives at 5:15 am. After clocking in, I change into surgical scrubs then head to the floor to get set up for the day.
Next, I’ll grab the keys to the drug lockers and make sure that my OR has any medications I know the anesthesiologist will need for that day. My first priority is to make sure the OR is stocked with supplies that might be needed and that emergency medications are easily accessible.
As soon as the OR is ready for the day, I begin pre-operative work on the first patient. Then I'll make sure my paperwork is in order and that everything has been signed, including consent forms that will be given to the dentist and anesthesiologist.
Once we have the child asleep and intubated I begin prepping the next patient of the day and the rest of my day repeats the same cycle.
The cons of my schedule
One of the most challenging parts of my schedule is the one day a week that I have to get up at 4:30 am. Even if it's just once a week it is still hard to get out of bed that early in the morning. For me, those struggles are offset by the fact that I only have to get there and clock in. I don’t have to handle the business part of the job. It also provides consistency with income and allows me a baseline of income for the month.
My current work situation is not for everyone. Many people want a position where they are able to clock in and out and not have to think about or worry about the financial part of the job once they get home. There are pros and cons to every job, and experiencing burnout shortly into my career was a wake up call that I wanted more control over my schedule and life. This motivated me to create the work life balance that I wanted for myself.
Author: Brittney Bertagna, RN BSN
With pediatric dental surgery, neonatal intensive care unit, and adult infusion experience, she has years of hands-on patient experience she can draw from. She is patient-focused and passionate about making a positive impact in the healthcare industry.
She also has a bachelor's degree in business administration with a focus on small business/entrepreneurship. With her educational and clinical background, she is the perfect nurse writer to translate healthcare products and services into relatable material for any patient population.