Nursing: Difference Between Critical Thinking And Problem Solving

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Critical thinking and problem solving are not same but they are sometimes used interchangeably but are separate processes that are related in some situations. Not all decisions we make involve solving a problem, creativity is a form of critical thinking itself. There is a crucial difference between critical thinking and problem solving. Problem solving focuses on a problem and finding solutions to resolve the problem. In contrast, critical thinking goes beyond problem solving. Rather than seeking a specific solution to a problem, critical thinking expects to bring up issues on all parts of the circumstance and evaluate the circumstances.

Perhaps one reason why confusion exists around the differences between problem solving and critical thinking is because, critical thinking needs to be understood as a process. For example, an important step in
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Critical thinking is a cognitive process which includes reviewing data, distinguishing a problem, deciding the best solution, picking the most effective strategy of reaching that solution and considering potential explanation and outcomes before settling on a decision. After executing the plan, critical thinkers reflect on the situation and the solution that they have selected to figure out if it was the best and effective or if it could have been done better. Critical thinking is a reasonable reflective thinking and discipline specific focused on deciding what to believe or do. It is best understood as the ability of thinkers to take charge of their own thinking. Critical thinking in nursing is needed in response to the rapidly changing health care environment. For example, a terminally ill patient is obviously in severe pain but refuse to take analgesia or any pain killer medicines at this point nurses need to think critically and decide how to make them agree on taking