Bed Baths, I dread giving them. - page 4

OK, so now I'm going to split my 0.6 FTE on our small rural hospital 6 bed CCU/Stepdown unit half and half, 12 hour days and 12 hour nights, since some rare weekday dayshifts opened up. I'm keeping... Read More

  1. by   carolinapooh
    Quote from gwenith
    Every so often I will give the patient a "cream bath" rather than a soap bath. I work ICU so our patients are sponged every day. It does help and there is research that states that over cleansing can remove natural oils and increase the risk of skin breakdown.

    Now does anyone do "Hot Towel Sponges?"

    Very popular in one private hospital here. You get a bucket and fill with warm/hot water add some "Dermalux" or similar wash - some put in a drop of lavender. Then you add 3-5 rolled towels and let them soak. To sponge the patient you just lie the towels over them and rub with the towel. Relaxes the patient and is faster than a normal sponge.
    I've never heard of this but I like it. It also sounds very spa-ish!
  2. by   carolinapooh
    Quote from EmerNurse
    You might also want to think about this: just because you've been taught how to do something, doesn't mean there aren't other ways, perhaps better ways, to accomplish the same thing. If I haven't done something in a very long time, sure I can look up the steps in a skills book, but I'd be very appreciative of the tips and insights offered by those who do it more often and may have some great ideas to contribute.

    No nurse knows or remembers every little thing they were taught in nursing school, if they've not done it in ages. I was taught Leopold's maneuvers for OB in school. I was tested on it and I passed very well. Could l do it now?? Probably, with the book in front of me. Do it WELL? Doubt it -let alone evaluate the results! One of the reasons I love this site is the tips and insight I get, even on things I do everyday, but can now do better!
    I just finished my first semester of nursing school, and I have to admit - I had NO IDEA that a bed bath is something you have to learn how to do. I mean, it sounds so intuitive - until you try to DO it. Then you find out that every principle you ever thought you knew is bogus, and you realize you're not as bright as you thought you were... As silly as it sounds to some, it's true - it's not actually as easy as you'd think, and I can see how someone who'd been, say, in the OR or ED for several years might not have a clue where to start....
  3. by   RYNOBLASTER30
    Bed baths, what the hell are they. These people don't bath themselves everyday at home, why should they be bathed everyday in the hospital? What a waste of nursing resources. I've had a patient code, and immediately this crazy nurse is trying to bath them. Are you kidding me. I'm worried about life and death, and they wanna make sure the linens are clean becase if not, the next nurse with "talk bad about them," not taking into account the you helped save their life.
  4. by   chadash
    Quote from RYNOBLASTER30
    Bed baths, what the hell are they. These people don't bath themselves everyday at home, why should they be bathed everyday in the hospital? What a waste of nursing resources. I've had a patient code, and immediately this crazy nurse is trying to bath them. Are you kidding me. I'm worried about life and death, and they wanna make sure the linens are clean becase if not, the next nurse with "talk bad about them," not taking into account the you helped save their life.
    good point.
  5. by   wonderbee
    Once we stablize our trauma admit, we bathe them. They're usually covered with dried blood and road dirt. This way we're able to see what the wounds are and the family isn't as freaked out when they first see their loved one.

    Bed baths are a pet peeve of mine. It's not that I don't know how to give them. I just don't like this part of nursing care. One way I get through it is to carry my own favorite music CDs that I pop into the bedside boom boxes. If the patient is awake and aware, I'll choose something that we both like. It really helps a tedious task go faster and makes it more enjoyable.
  6. by   clemmm78
    Quote from RYNOBLASTER30
    Bed baths, what the hell are they. These people don't bath themselves everyday at home, why should they be bathed everyday in the hospital? What a waste of nursing resources. I've had a patient code, and immediately this crazy nurse is trying to bath them. Are you kidding me. I'm worried about life and death, and they wanna make sure the linens are clean becase if not, the next nurse with "talk bad about them," not taking into account the you helped save their life.
    Most people I know *do* bathe/shower every day, usually before or after work.

    Other reasons for bed baths: Because many patients lying in a hospital bed are sweating or have extremely dry skin that needs to be tended to to avoid break down. For those who use bedpans, pericare is often needed, those who use urinals often dribble.

    Patients who eat in bed can get food crumbs fall under their bed clothes and lodge in creases in the skin, causing sores (I've seen it). It allows for you to notice bumps and red marks that might not be noticed (I've found them).

    Of course, a life threatening intervention takes precedence, but bed baths are not a waste of time. And, having to give bedbaths does *not* imply that we must give one every day - I don't know where that comes from. But sometimes our patients *are* dirty and sometimes they *do* need bedbaths and therefore, we must know how to give them efficiently and compassionately.
  7. by   x3xsolxdierx3x
    Hello everyone,

    I'm a junior nursing student here.....I apologize if this was brought up in this thread already...I read a few posts, but, not all 5 pages of them...yet.....

    I just did my Med-surg rotation....I really had a great time with it and learned alot....but, there was never any real answer about whether to do real bed baths with a basin/soap, etc.....or to use those warmed wet wipes......For the year that I loved overseas, I lived on those....they always seemed to be very convenient and effective. It's not about me though....I really want the best for my patients.....some actually have come to prefer those wet-wipes though, as opposed to the bed baths. I don't want to take any shortcuts here, for the sake of convenience....but, is there really a difference in effectiveness? Thanks!

    What do you all prefer? Should I just ask my patient what they would prefer?

    Howie
  8. by   mauxtav8r
    If you ask the sales reps that sell the warmed wipes, they'll tell you wipes are the best thing for patients -- skin is healthier, it's faster, therefore it's used more. End result, patient stays cleaner and therefore healthier.

    But my wise clinical instructor says there's just no substitute for soap and water. :wink2:
  9. by   PBAJS
    moongirl posted - "Ask a CNA you work with I am sure they would be happy to show you proper techinque"

    If possible, ask and work with a few, or several, CNAs.

    I have worked with a few CNAs that seemed to be very fast. How? They only washed and dried. No lotion used, powder everywhere "because it smells good'. When a patient was incontient of urine, the area was not washed, just the incontient pad or brief/diaper was changed.
  10. by   PBAJS
    Adding ... care to the feet ...

    I have seen small to large amounts of 'dirt' between and under the toes. When the toes are close together, I fold the wash cloth in half and pull the wash cloth back and forth between the toes.
  11. by   chadash
    Quote from PBAJS
    moongirl posted - "Ask a CNA you work with I am sure they would be happy to show you proper techinque"

    If possible, ask and work with a few, or several, CNAs.

    I have worked with a few CNAs that seemed to be very fast. How? They only washed and dried. No lotion used, powder everywhere "because it smells good'. When a patient was incontient of urine, the area was not washed, just the incontient pad or brief/diaper was changed.
    yeah, I took longer in a nursing home with diaper changes because I always washed the patient. I still do.
  12. by   sister--*
    We have the warmed towlettes. They are awesome! One towelette for each area of the body. They are quite gentle on the skin AND very effective in removing body soil and odors.

    I believe there's an infection control issue, too, as you're not introducing contaminates from one part of the body to another. Also, there isn't a bath pan that may be harboring germs.

    However, I'm not so sold on the shampoo caps. They seem to make hair "greasy." I do use them, though, as many times there isn't an alternative that is appropriate for the pt.'s condition.
  13. by   chadash
    I long for warmed towlettes! Most of the time, I think they would be preferable to wash cloths, except in the case of someone who has been neglected elsewhere.
    yeah, those shampoo caps are awful. We use those tiny blue capped bottles of rinseless shampoo, and I like them alot!

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