Do You take your patients out for smoke breaks? - page 6

We do, but I don't agree with it.... Read More

  1. by   RN(MH)
    I am probably risking a torrent of angry posts here, but to be quite contraversial I have to say that smoking CAN cause cancer but not does not always !! There are many other factors as well that can cause cancer and be detrimental to ones health !! There is the awful polution from car fumes that is in the air all the time, so maybe we should be stopped from driving our cars. Then there is the pesticides that is on our food, so maybe we should stop eating !! There has been on our news recently about a strong link between pesticides and cancer. Then there is the risk of using mobile phones and brain tumours, so perhaps the use of all mobile phones should be stopped. There is also the possible link of electicity pylons and cancer, so perhaps we should go back to the days of candle power. In everyday modern life there are huge risks, so me or any other nurse taking a patient out for a smoke to me is not an issue. I would take a patient (provided they were able to go outside) for a smoke. That said it doesnt mean that as a nurse or a human being that I do not care about the health of my patients, as I do. But these patients are adults, and as such have a right to make an informed decision, and to deny them this is an infringement of their human rights.
    There are more and more cases whereby younger people are found to have cancer, where they have never smoked, drank, they eat healthy and exercise, so every day living such as car polution and pesticides have to play a part.
  2. by   Sunny01
    I do and I have no problem with it. I of course tell my patients about the hazards of smoking and I give them the hospital brochure about quitting the habit...
  3. by   Liliana98
    No, I do not take them out for smoke breaks...I keep telling them it causes cancer and cardiovascular problems...I hate to remind them of it but it's my job as a nurse to educate the public even if it's a topic they dislike.
  4. by   Alexsys
    Quote from RN(MH)
    I am probably risking a torrent of angry posts here, but to be quite contraversial I have to say that smoking CAN cause cancer but not does not always !! There are many other factors as well that can cause cancer and be detrimental to ones health !! There is the awful polution from car fumes that is in the air all the time, so maybe we should be stopped from driving our cars. Then there is the pesticides that is on our food, so maybe we should stop eating !! There has been on our news recently about a strong link between pesticides and cancer. Then there is the risk of using mobile phones and brain tumours, so perhaps the use of all mobile phones should be stopped. There is also the possible link of electicity pylons and cancer, so perhaps we should go back to the days of candle power. In everyday modern life there are huge risks, so me or any other nurse taking a patient out for a smoke to me is not an issue. I would take a patient (provided they were able to go outside) for a smoke. That said it doesnt mean that as a nurse or a human being that I do not care about the health of my patients, as I do. But these patients are adults, and as such have a right to make an informed decision, and to deny them this is an infringement of their human rights.
    There are more and more cases whereby younger people are found to have cancer, where they have never smoked, drank, they eat healthy and exercise, so every day living such as car polution and pesticides have to play a part.
    For me it is not about the cancer. 1) Although ciggarettes dont ALWAYS cause cancer, they dont promote health either and health promotion is supposed to be one of the roles of the nurse. Ciggs have more CONS than pros. 2) I do NOT smoke and I do NOT wish to be around it. These are MY lungs and I am not going to kill them because someone else has an urge to suck on a cancer stick.(Yes other things do cause cancer but ciggarettes have been PROVEN to cause it as well) 3) I am in ICU so smoking is not an option for my patients anyway
  5. by   RN(MH)
    Quote from Alexsys
    For me it is not about the cancer. 1) Although ciggarettes dont ALWAYS cause cancer, they dont promote health either and health promotion is supposed to be one of the roles of the nurse. Ciggs have more CONS than pros. 2) I do NOT smoke and I do NOT wish to be around it. These are MY lungs and I am not going to kill them because someone else has an urge to suck on a cancer stick.(Yes other things do cause cancer but ciggarettes have been PROVEN to cause it as well) 3) I am in ICU so smoking is not an option for my patients anyway

    Hi
    I can understand your concerns with regards to cigarettes not promoting health with regards to possible pysical problems, and agree that health promotion is supposed to be one of the roles of the nurse. I have always tried to promote health, however, I guess I look at things slightly differently, and thats one of the reasons that I chose to do Mental Health Nursing before starting my nurse training. (In the UK we have to decide what path to take before we enrol..not sure how it is in the US). I have always thought differently to many people that I have known throughout my life, and consider stress to more of a problem than smoking. It can cause both mental health and physical health to deteriorate so badly that a person cannot function and cannot cope with everyday life. I have also seen the effects that medication prescribed for stress or depression cause many problems such as the horrendous side effects and withdrawal symptoms when coming off them. These are powerful drugs which I dont feel does the body any good. Ok so they are needed in some cases, but quite often just mask problems. On many an occasion I have sat with a patient (either in the smoking room or outside) with a cigarette, and talked with them or just listened to them, and this has eased their anxiety and made them feel valued and uplifted them more so than the drugs. I have also seen people in such a panic cos they cant have a smoke and this has aggravated their problems. I have also seen this with my friends and family as well, and often I meet friends who have problems for a coffee and a smoke and a chat and this has also been done for me as well, as found this to be more effective than anything else. I think its the fact that there is someone there that does not judge them that will understand their need for a smoke and a chat, and they feel that person cares.
    So smoking to me is not such an important issue, yes it can cause health problems, but stress can cause so many more and does horrendous things to the body.
    I think that some countries are so hooked into the whole smoking issue that other issues are very much overlooked, such as stress, and also alcohol. I have seen more problems, physicaly and mentally related to alcohol than I have related to smoking, yet we are still allowed to drink alcohol on a plane for example wen it can make people roudy and aggressive and sick, yet we cannot smoke, which often calms people down.
    Sorry if I have offended anyone, it is not my intention to do that, but think we need to get out of having tunnel vision with regards to smoking. Yes it can cause health problems, but can also have a good effect in that in can help to relieve stress and tension. And on a positive note, if a person is less stressed then they will smoke less, and possibly give up altogether. I have heard people say that want to give up or cut down, but cannot due to the stress in their life at that time.
  6. by   Alexsys
    No offense taken.We are here to discuss our opinions as adults . You are focusing on mental health only with your views. (Who has tunnel vision?) Do you think that letting a critical care or coronary care patient have a ciggarette would relieve stress? Not likely. It would cause much more problems. MH patients are a bit different. They are physically able to smoke as most other patients are not. So that all depends on the type of the patients that you have. I work in critical care so my answer would still be a definate no. You have compared smoking wth other things that cause cancer, but the fact remains that smoking still contributes to it. I have had patients addicted to pain meds and sang that same stress song when I could not give it (before it was time to). How can a patient who has just been taken off a vent or have recently had surgery have a smoke when they request it? Your example is in a MH setting. That is like comparing apples and oranges.


    So yes, your views on smoking do work, but maybe in a MH setting only , which I totally understand, but it would never work for critical care and since that is my area ,(In the US we decide at any time what area of nursing we would like to follow) then no, it would not be in the patient's best interest to have a ciggarette, because I do care

    I cant understand why you brought up alcohol on a plane. That is not a hospital setting-totally different. The passengers are not there due to illness.
  7. by   fantasie
    I couldn't if I wanted to, I'm a school nurse Not that I would want to.
  8. by   ns lpn
    Staff at my facility are not allowed to, if the resident can not do it then it's up to the family and for the most part that seems to appease all the workers ...not so much the residents involved.
  9. by   Laught3r
    I used to work for a facility that allowed Docs to write Rx for pts to go outside and smoke. These pts would need to be put into wheelchairs wrapped up and then taken down the elevator five stories and around to the back of the building. Just getting them out of bed, to the smoke area, and back in bed not including the time it actually took to smode was 30 min.
    I hated it because the smoking staff was always the ones who would take them out to smoke. Then they would come back inside and say I'm going on my break now. I was an aide then and it just seemed to me that it made more work for everyone. If a nurse took the pt out to smoke then the nurses left on the floor had more work while that nurse on had one pt. The same if the aide took them out to smoke. I think that it should never be a policy that staff take pts out to smoke.
  10. by   shodobe
    The only patients that are allowed to go out and smoke are the ambulatory ones who can get around on their own. Patients also have to sign a waiver of responsibility to do so. Patients that are bedridden are told they can not go out to smoke even if they can get up in a wheelchair because nurses can not go out to babysit them. They are given a patch and if it works fine , if not too bad. We had an older patient years ago go out to smoke and fell striking her head. I came in and did a cranie and she finally died a few days later. This was after constant requests by staff and her surgeon NOT to go out to smoke. Luclkily this was documented several times so the family could do nothing about it. My hospital does not tolerate patients who smoke, even outside, but cover themselves by constant documentation and having the patients sign the waiver, thus eliminating hospital liability. The lawyers state this is very legal and binding.
  11. by   PPHawk
    We have employees who smoke and they will take residents outside which also gives them an extra smoke break. I'm fine with that, but I will not take anyone out to that area. I quit 16 years ago and I can tell you that I really hate the smell out there. I don't even like it when the employee comes back inside...smokers aren't able to smell the 'dirty ashtray' odor that follows them. I don't appreciate walking into a store that has people clustered at the door, smoking.
    Quite honestly, I wish there was no public smoking. But having been addicted to them, I don't want to be mean to others either. As long as no one expects me to go out there, I'll keep quiet.
  12. by   banditrn
    I currently work in LTC - the facility that I just left was small, and none of the residents smoked, so it wasn't an issue.

    At the one where I just started, no, I won't - I don't smoke, the smell gags me - but for the couple that do, I'll try to find someone else that will. They have a smoking porch off the lobby.
  13. by   elizabeth321
    Smoking is not allowed anywhere on our property...not by staff or patients...they are offered the patch.

    I am thrilled about it.

    Liz

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