Theory of Comfort in Nursing Essay

Theory of Comfort in Nursing Essay

Evidence suggests that patients do better when their expectations about specific benefits of nursing care are discussed and met. Design a comfort contract whereby patients or their surrogates designate an expected level of postsurgical overall comfort, and also where they can specify chronic discomforts and interventions that they use at home for relief.

Theory of Comfort in Nursing Essay

Theory of Comfort In Nursing Essay Sample

Patient comfort spearheaded the sprouting of patient-centered care. The healthcare system is expected to provide healing as well as comfort. The theory of comfort is a middle-range theory developed by Katharine Kolcaba in 1994 (Vo, 2020). It is based upon a triad of concepts, including relief, ease, and transcendence, as well as a tetrad of domains, including physical, psychospiritual, sociocultural, and environmental (Vo, 2020). A relief means an experience of meeting a comfort need, while ease implies an experience that offers contentment. Meanwhile, transcendence refers to the experience in which care enables an individual to stretch beyond a problem or pain.

The physical domain defines bodily functions and sensations, while the psychospiritual domain focuses on life meaning, self-esteem, relationship to a supreme being, and sexuality. On the other hand, social-cultural domains encompass social relationships. Lastly, the environmental domain is rooted in the external environment (Vo, 2020). Patient comfort is attained when nursing care integrates all the domains and concepts. Similarly, patients tend to do better when their needs are explored and met. In the subsequent paragraphs, a patient comfort contract will be designed to highlight the expected level of post-surgical comfort, specific chronic discomforts, and relevant interventions for relief while at home.

A patient contract is more of an agreement between a patient and a healthcare provider. All patient contracts should be documented following a negotiation between the parties involved (Gallagher et al., 2022). The post-surgical period is associated with a couple of physical, psychospiritual, sociocultural, and environmental needs that necessitate intensive perioperative nursing care to attain patient comfort. The following is an example of a contract between J. L., a 49-year-old African American male in his postoperative period following surgical evacuation of epidural hematoma, and an APRN.

J. L had been involved in a road traffic accident because he was driving under the influence of alcohol. J. L understood comfort as being free from pain, feeling stronger, feeling cared for, valued, and connected to people (Fang et al., 2019). However, the APRN understood that patient comfort is multidimensional and holistic (Wensley et al., 2020). After an elaborate discussion, the following were J. L’s needs;

  • Physical- monitoring of vital signs, GCS, fluids, analgesics, nutrition, bladder and bowel care, constant turning, seizure prophylaxis, and daily cleaning and dressing of his wounds.
  • Psychospiritual- playing music, praying, and patient education.
  • Sociocultural- accurate information and participation, family involvement, social and emotional support.
  • Environmental- undisturbed rest, dim lights, and a safe healing environment.

Likewise, he was tasked with responsibilities including notifying healthcare providers in case of any concern, cooperating with healthcare providers, and taking medication as prescribed. Upon discharge, he was expected to continue daily cleaning and dressing of his minor wounds, cease alcohol intake, engage in church activities, join a rehabilitative program and continue follow-up as an outpatient. Implementation of this comfort contract meant intensive perioperative nursing care.

  1. L understood the risk of being bedridden and the importance of family and social support systems throughout the care process. The APRN demonstrated the hallmarks of a humane society and caring, including empathy, dignity, compassion, and kindness (Wensley et al., 2020). Consequently, J. L experienced ease, relief, and transcendence following the fulfillment of his physical, psychospiritual, sociocultural, and environmental needs. These led to high levels of satisfaction. A study by Tian et al. (2021) demonstrated that patient satisfaction in the comfort care group was significantly higher compared to the experimental group during care of oral and maxillofacial surgery patients (87.76% vs. 63.27%, P<0.05). Finally, patient comfort requires a collaborative care model and a low nurse-to-patient ratio to prevent burnout (Sun et al., 2021).


Patient comfort is multidimensional and holistic. It requires collaboration between the healthcare providers and the patient, particularly during the formation and implementation of a comfort contract. Patient comfort is associated with high levels of patient satisfaction and indicates quality and safe patient-centered care.


  • Fang, J., Liu, L., & Fang, P. (2019). What is the most important factor affecting patient satisfaction – a study based on the gamma coefficient? Patient Preference and Adherence, 13, 515–525.
  • Gallagher, E., Alvarez, E., Jin, L., Guenter, D., Hatcher, L., & Furlan, A. (2022). Patient contracts for chronic medical conditions: Scoping review: Scoping review. Canadian Family Physician Medecin de Famille Canadien, 68(5), e169–e177.
  • Sun, C., Jia, M., Wu, H., Yang, Q., Wang, Q., Wang, L., & Xu, H. (2021). The effect of comfort care based on the collaborative care model on patients’ compliance and self-care ability with coronary heart disease. Annals of Palliative Medicine, 10(1), 501–508.
  • Tian, Y., Lin, J., & Gao, F. (2021). The effects of comfort care on the recovery quality of oral and maxillofacial surgery patients undergoing general anesthesia. American Journal of Translational Research, 13(5), 5003–5010.
  • Vo, T. (2020). A practical guide for frontline workers during COVID-19: Kolcaba’s comfort theory. Journal of Patient Experience, 7(5), 635–639.
  • Wensley, C., Botti, M., McKillop, A., & Merry, A. F. (2020). Maximizing comfort: how do patients describe the care that matters? A two-stage qualitative descriptive study to develop a quality improvement framework for comfort-related care in inpatient settings. BMJ Open, 10(5), e033336.

Theory of Comfort Assignment 2

React to the following:

“Nurses are responsible for creating a “general atmosphere of comfort” for their patients. Health and well-being in the sense of “contentment,” “comfort,” and “ease,” as well as “responsibility,” according to Dowd (2017). A nurse’s worth is always measured by how well she can put her patients at ease. It is not enough for a nurse to provide physical care for a patient’s well-being. Patients’ mental well-being is primarily due to offering physical comfort and adjusting to their environment”.

Theory of Comfort Assignment 3

React to the following:

“Patients’ and their loved ones’ opinions and satisfaction with healthcare services can be used to gauge the quality and sufficiency of those treatments. Patient happiness is the most significant measure. Measuring patient satisfaction can provide valuable information about performance that can be applied to better quality management.”