A family consists of a group of interacting individuals related by blood, marriage, cohabitation, or adoption who interdependently perform relevant functions by fulfilling expected roles. (Edelman, Kudzma, & Mandle, 2014, p. 150) The family has various functions that include teaching members’ values, morals and beliefs as they relate to health practices. Health can be defined as a complete state of wellbeing and not merely the absence of disease. Gordon’s functional health patterns are a methodology developed by Marjorie Gordon in 1987 to be used as a guide to establish a comprehensive nursing database (Kriegler & Harton, 1992).
Gordon’s eleven functional health patterns are; health perception/ health management, nutrition, sleep/ rest, pattern of elimination, activity/ exercise, cognitive, self-perception/ self-concept, roles/ relationships, sexuality, coping/ stress and values/ beliefs. By using these categories, it is possible to create a systematic and standardized approach to data collection and enables the nurse to determine the family’s needs related to aspects of health and human function (Kriegler & Harton, 1992).
An assessment of a family of five consisting of two grandparents, two parents and a child was conducted using those eleven patterns. Pattern of Health Perception and Health Management Health perception and values are focused on the individual’s perception of their health and their beliefs and values (Edelman, 2014). The health perception of the family is one of maintenance of their current health by annual checkups, immunizations as needed and eating healthy. Eating healthy is a focus in this family because both grandparents are diabetic.
They take their medication as prescribed by their physician. No one in this family smokes but both grandparents have a history of smoking; she quit 15 years ago and he quit 13 years ago. All four adults do socially drink alcohol but no more than 3-5 drinks a week. The grandfather and both parents are Catholic; however, the entire family is Christian and is soon to have the youngest baptized. He is recently adopted and a wonderful three year old addition to the family. This family has a very good perception of health and solid value system. Pattern of Nutrition
The nutrition assessment focuses on the patterns of food and fluid consumption relative to metabolic needs (Kriegler & Harton, 1992). Nutrition is balanced. Since the two elders are retired and home during the day, the parents work, and the youngest attends daycare not all three meals are eaten together or even exist in the same proportions. Fruits and vegetables are eaten and carbohydrates and sugars are limited. The husband enjoys cooking and prepares nutritious meals. Water consumption is moderate as are caffeinated drinks in this household.
This is not the way the family has always eaten, however since the child was adopted and the grandparents moved in the focus has been on more nutritious meals and snacks. The family has learned to eat a more healthy diet to maintain their current health and prevent problems associated with the grandparents’ diabetes. Pattern of Sleep and Rest The sleep and rest pattern assessment focus is on the individuals sleep, rest and relaxation practices. The grandparents and the child sleep an average of 8-9 hours a night but the parents both work full time.
They wake up early and get home prior to dinner, and she is going back to school right now, so after the little ones bedtime she does homework. The mother sleeps an average of 5 hours a night. They both care for the child before and after daycare. The father does not sleep well and is chronically fatigued. Sleep and rest patterns in this family could use some intervention to correct the problem. Pattern of Elimination Elimination assessment is focused on excretory patterns (Kriegler & Harton, 1992). The grandmother suffers from chronic diabetic associated loose stools.
Grandfather uses laxatives and stool softeners routinely. Grandmother and mother have both been diagnosed with irritable bowel. No one in the family has problems with urination or their bowel movements. Pattern of Activity and exercise Activity and exercise assessment is focused on the activities of ADL’s, exercise and leisure activities (Kriegler & Harton, 1992). Activities and exercise is limited in this family due to the parents work schedule. The father runs and exercises both at home and at the YMCA when time allows, which is a few times a week.
The grandmothers mobility is limited due to balance issues, although she is participating in physical therapy at the present time for strengthening. They don’t feel they exercise enough although they know how important it is for them to exercise especially with their diabetes. Normal ADL’s are a minor problem for the grandmother although the grandfather helps her. The parents function at a high level with every day activities. Cognitive-Perceptual Pattern Cognitive and Sensory- Perception is the assessment is focused on the ability to comprehend and use information and on the sensory functions (Kriegler ; Harton, 1992).
Data on neurologic functions are assessed. Mother and father have college degrees. Both grandparents have had cataract surgeries, so eyesight is adequate. Grandfather wears two hearing aids, sometimes, and grandmother is hard of hearing but has no hearing aids so verbal communication is sometimes amusing and sometimes frustrating for all involved. Grandfather has some dementia and is quite forgetful,and grandmother is beginning to become forgetful as well. Their children do not have any learning deficits.
Self-Perception –Self-Concept Pattern Self-Perception assessment is focused on an individual’s attitude towards self-such as body image, the sense of self-worth and self-esteem (Kriegler ; Harton, 1992). All members deny self-esteem issues and see themselves as valued and hopeful in their life. Their beliefs are imbedded into their self-worth. They teach their children the same values and beliefs that are dear to their hearts and hope their children will not have any problems with self-esteem, self-worth. Pattern of Role and Relationship
Role Relationships assessment is focused on the individuals roles in the world and relationships with others (Kriegler ; Harton, 1992). There seems to be a strong family relationship. Father is soon to be promoted in his career and plans to return to school. Mother is taking classes at present. This family has a solid faith and enjoys people. Pattern of Sexuality and Reproduction Sexuality assessment is focused on the individual’s satisfaction with sexuality patterns (Kriegler ; Harton, 1992). Mother and father currently are not satisfied with their sexual relationship due to their busy lives.
Their dissatisfaction is due to the lack of intimacy. This is a problem for them and they are trying to work on the issue. Grandfather and grandmother do not offer any issues. Pattern of Coping and Stress Tolerance Coping assessment is focused on the individual’s perception of stress and coping strategies; the individual’s support systems should be evaluated (Kriegler ; Harton, 1992). The family lacks sufficient communication skilsl to deal with stress and resolve problems, but they are using self-help strategies to strengthen those skills.
Their support system consists of family and friends. Pattern of Values and Belief The wellness and family diagnoses I chose based on my assessment of the family are; high risk for imbalanced nutrition more than body requirements, risk for activity intolerance, fatigue and ineffective sexuality patterns. The family is at risk for imbalance nutrition more than body requirements and activity intolerance due to their lack of exercise and with the diagnosis of diabetes. They have altered the way they eat but have not added an exercise regimen to their lives.
The work and school schedule causes a lack of sleep for mother and father and seem to cause both to be fatigued which causes a lack of intimacy in their relationship. The nursing diagnosis of ineffective sexuality pattern is also appropriate. Gordon’s 11 functional health patterns allowed collection of data necessary to determine the family’s perception of their health, educational needs and identification of health problems and goals. Community resources were offered for further education and intervention strategies. The family is well educated, however they could benefit from more education on health maintenance, promotion and prevention.