are "fake nails" okay for nurses? - page 7

I am a nursing student graduating next month. I wore "fake nails" before nursing school, but my program did not allow them during school. I am considering getting them again after graduation. ... Read More

  1. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    It always makes me laugh when I hear this arguement.
    So GLAD you think this issue is humorous.
  2. by   Euskadi1946
    There is nothing humerous about this issue and I personally do not think it's funny. Acrylic nails are great and look nice and have worn them for a long time. As I stated before, when we were allowed to wear them in the clinical setting I wore them but I kept them short, well manicured and I always wore gloves when doing patient care as well. However, if some nurses are careless and don't take care of their acrylic nails and they got a fungus and passed it on to their patients, then CDC had to step in and ban them. I absolutely have no problems with this and feel that for the sake of patient safety, acrylic nails have no place in patient care. When the hospital I last worked at requested that we remove our acrylic nails, I took them off the next day and never wore them again until I left the clinical setting. I don't work in a hospital anymore so I started getting my nails done again. If I go back to the hospital setting, I will remove them.
  3. by   yogastudentRN
    I would say no, unless you are working somewhere like psych or an office where you don't do much in the way of touching patients.
  4. by   HappyNurse2005
    the local health system i plan on working for says no artificial nails(acrylic or silk nails), no acrylic designs on your own nails. makes sense to me, for what thats worth, i would also think that one's own nails shouldnt be too long
    rose
  5. by   Headhurt
    Quote from nightcaller
    I happen to think they are better and healthier than natural nails. Natural nails are porous and can harbor loads of bacteria. Gels are impermeable. Plus, acrylics do not just 'fall off'... they're tough and strong... I wouldn't do without them! My hands are CLEAN, and well kept... if anything, my nails being well manicured show that I care about personal hygiene. Not to mention, I happen to wear gloves every time I perform patient care, so what is the problem?? It always makes me laugh when I hear this arguement. I'll wear them always.
    The fact that this comes from an ICU nurse scares me...where the most sick and critical patients can be found.

    I work on a floor that tends to draw alot of the exotic infections. We use standard and contact precautions, TONS of handwashing AND alcohol cleansing foam, and NONE of us wear acrylics. Yes, I sometimes get them put on if I am going to go on vacation for a week, but they are the first thing to come off before I go back to work. I think they look nice, but I don't particularly want to take a gamble that I could bring some nasty critter to my family at the end of the day. You can have the best hygiene in the world, but that is no guarantee...
  6. by   FocusRN
    Personally I think this whole dissucsion is stupid. Why, you ask. Well for one whether you have fake nails or not, you nails are still a bredding ground for bacteria, short or long. Think about it, how many of you spend 15 minutes after each time you wash your hands to make sure your nail beds are completely dry, and that underneath the nail is comepletely dry? I would be stunned to find one. That alone is leaving an avenue for bacteria within the moisture. So fake nails or real nails there is going to be bacteria. In my opinion it is a personal choice. I like them for myself, but since I am pregnant I haven't gotten them in months because I don't want to be exposed to the fumes in the nail salon. So basically if you don't like them fine don't wear them.

    But don't ever think that just because you have natural short nails, and follow the correct procedure for washing your hands, that bacteria isn't still lurking. And don't think that you won't bring germs home. A hospital is one of the dirtiest places in the world no matter how much it is cleaned, because you are dealing with ill people. And even with everything that I do before I go home I am more than sure I am still carrying germs home with me.I take my shoes off and put them in a plastic bag before get into the car, and I sit on a plastic car seat cover that gets soaked in hot water with bleach daily. I don't wear my shoes or my scrubs in the house after work EVER. I get undressed in my shed down to my underwear. I have one washing machine just for my scrubs in the shed, because I would never put them with my regular clothes. And I drop my shoes in some hot water and bleach. On top a that I get a new pair of shoes monthly, and discard the old ones. And even with all of that precaution, I am more that sure germs get into my home, so please don't think that just becasue you don't have fake nails you are somehow protecting yourself and your home, that is just ridiculous.

    And that is why this dissution is stupid in my opinion. Your nails and your body will always carry germs when working in a healthcare setting. Period.
  7. by   SmilingBluEyes
    The discussion is far from "stupid". You are right on one thing; we do harbor bacteria in our nails, on our bodies. And that is why I bathe immediately when I come home......and why I do a 5 minute scrub upon reporting to work.I protect my patients, my family and myself with good hygiene habits.

    BUT the fungi that are typically in acrylics are NOT normal flora for un-dressed nails or most people........and they are PROVEN very deadly and resistant to cleaning off. NOT WORTH IT.
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on Dec 13, '04
  8. by   fergus51
    I don't know why people are unwilling to admit what has been proven. Fake nails are dangerous to patients. Period.
  9. by   FocusRN
    I still believe that this thread is stupid, just because we all know that nails harbor bacteria, real or fake. Meaning that we are always exposed to germs, and having a basic online battle won't change that.


    Quote from SmilingBluEyes
    The discussion is far from "stupid". You are right on one thing; we do harbor bacteria in our nails, on our bodies. And that is why I bathe immediately when I come home......and why I do a 5 minute scrub upon reporting to work.I protect my patients, my family and myself with good hygiene habits.

    BUT the fungi that are typically in acrylics are NOT normal flora for un-dressed nails or most people........and they are PROVEN very deadly and resistant to cleaning off. NOT WORTH IT.
  10. by   FocusRN
    I will admit that, but on the same token so are real nails. Simple.

    Quote from fergus51
    I don't know why people are unwilling to admit what has been proven. Fake nails are dangerous to patients. Period.
  11. by   allmynez
    Quote from Streamlined
    What is it with nails, anyway? Why do gals need to adorn their nails, sometimes so grotesquely it besmirches their characters? Yes, it's fun to color-up yourself, but do those nails really need to be two inches long and have little diamonds imbedded in them? And what does it say about you that you would spend your money and your time having layers of petro-chemicals applied to your fingertips as you inhale the fumes ? Somebody, please, explain the nail thing to me.
    I guess you don't get your hair done, or buy clothes that u like. Why end it there, why buy clothes at all, my whole life revolves around being a nurse. I couldn't possibly want to spend some money on myself because I work hard for it. It's just one of those things people get cause they like the way it looks or they just feel like buying. Why buy a car it only pollutes the earth with fumes? Why not just walk everywhere?
  12. by   fergus51
    Quote from New_Mom_LPN_Student
    I will admit that, but on the same token so are real nails. Simple.
    Not like fake nails are. Real nails don't harbor the same nasty fungus that fake nails do. They just don't. That's what makes fake nails dangerous when compared to real nails. That's why nurses with fake nails are endangering their patients.
  13. by   NurseNatalie2005
    fake nails carry more bacteria then real nails. i cannot quite remember why. pretty much if your program and or employer allow it, then it is ok...granted you should be wearing gloves anyway.
    hope that helps hun
    natalie

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