Nurses grossed out by spit/mucus - page 3

I'm starting this thread in hopes that I will read of some techniques to help me overcome my aversion to mucus. I can deal with foul BMs, emptying JPs and NG tube containers, draining clotty... Read More

  1. by   nancynurz
    GAG! I have goose bumps from just reading the descriptions! My ex-husband used to chew tobacco and would leave hockers in cups, bottles, cans, floating in the toilet . . . . errgh! I would've threatend to dump it on him in his sleep but he knew I couldn't get close enough to the cup to pick it up. Anytime I hear that moist, loose, rattling cough, I duck for cover

    My second runner up in the "gag factor 10+" category is those opened boils that just pour out that thick, sticky pus like a leaky faucet-- guess it does resemble mucus. Oh! And changing the babies with gastroenteritis. Mucus packaged in a Pamper every 15 minutes like clockwork back in my peds rotation :hatparty:
  2. by   Canuck RN
    Have To Add My Two Cents Worth. On The Subject Of Mucous(canadian Spelling), It's Gotta Be My Downfall In Patient Care. Have Withdrawn To The Bathroom Many Times To Gag When Doing Suctioning Or Emptying Suction Bottles.
    Something Else----why Do Men Have To "hork?",my Word. You See Them On The Street Or You Hear Them, And Know That Somewhere On The Sidewalk They've Left A Great Big Goober That Some Poor Soul,probably You Is Going To Step In Unsuspectingly. I've Never Seen A Woman"hork", How Come It's A Guy Thing?
  3. by   LisaG21
    :imbar Ugh! Mucus is not my thing either! I hate it when people have to be suctioned or are coughing it up! I just clench my teeth and take some deep breaths and try not to look at it more than I have to! lol Even my own makes me sick! Just last night I was trying to get through my shift (I was sick and running a fever, and I only had 2 hours left on my shift (we were really short that is the only reason I was there)) and a man rang the call bell and wanted a bucket I thought he was going to throw up! lol So I gave him the bucket and he spit a big wad of mucus (I am about to gag just thinking about it) and handed it to me. I went to rinse it out and he goes "AREN'T YOU GOING TO LOOK AT IT!" I was like are you kidding me! I already did lol Do you want me to dissect it :imbar :imbar :imbar I didn't say that but i wanted to. I just went into the bathroom and flushed it really fast. UGH!!!

    The only other things that bother me is nasal spray! The sound of someone sniffing it up their nose makes me want to puke! I could never do it myself either! When I see bri picking up the bottle to use it I say wait and run away and close my eyes and ears! lol

    I don't like acidic urine either! It makes me puke lol

    Other than that lol I'm good!!!



    Oh yeah skin that flakes off ! It doens't bother me I am just afraid I will breathe it in lol I had this lady when had cellulitis (I don't think it was but the doc said it was I never seen anything like this) on her whole body! and she honest to god shed like a snake! Her sheets would have to be changed 3-4 times a shift when she bathed I was afraid to touch her cause it looked sooo painful!
  4. by   EmeraldNYL
    Quote from rnmi2004
    I'm starting this thread in hopes that I will read of some techniques to help me overcome my aversion to mucus. I can deal with foul BMs, emptying JPs and NG tube containers, draining clotty purulent foley bags, etc. but I have the darndest time keeping my cookies when it comes to snot! I was once helping a bilat AKA wipe his behind after the most awful case of smelly taffy doo-doo and had no problem until he asked me to dab at the clear snot dripping from his nose. I almost puked while doing so. What is wrong with me?

    The usual Vicks/peppermint oil/other scent under the nose won't work here, because mucus (usually!) has no odor.

    The last two semesters of clinical rotations, I have specifically asked to be assigned to a trach client just so I can force myself to have to deal with this. Unfortunately (or fortunately?) there have been no patients suitable for me at the facilities I've been at. I am approaching my last semester starting the end of August, and then hopefully I will be off to med-surg. I know at some point I am going to have to deal with this.

    Is there hope for me? Does anyone have ANY suggestions?
    Get a job in a respiratory unit, hee hee.
  5. by   P_RN
    OK I'll do your mucus, flaky skin, tobacco and dentures.
    Oh and fractures (22yr in ortho)

    BUT you have to do my eyeballs, toenails and baby circs. Deal?
  6. by   LadyBugLass
    More grossouts:

    1. Ileostomy odor (God love ostomy nurses..they deserve alot more money than me.)
    2. Toenails that look like Frito scoops
    3. People who LIKE to pop zits on other people (not just a hospital thing; nothing ruins a day at the pool faster than watching a girl squeeze pimples on her boyfriends back.):uhoh21:
  7. by   LisaG21
    Quote from farkinott
    of course the worst thing about receiving a lung transplant is bringing up somebody else's sputum!
    my mom had a double lung transplant lol we never thought about that haha :chuckle
  8. by   sweetcheekers
    This must be the common thread among most nurses. When I began nursing school I felt the same way and thought I was odd until I asked my instructors about it. 5 out of 6 said the mucous was their weak point, and most of them commented that even the sound that we all describe as "girggling" gets them gaggy. The funny thing is that I encountered a situation that caught me off guard and found a new "icky" spot for me besides mucous. I had my first colostomy Pt which created much anxiety. I totally made it through her bag change with no problem (used Vicks under the nose). Then, when I got her up to ambulate she let out some of the most enormous belches I have ever heard. I mean these were huge, long, sharp sounding burps that actually sounded painful. Now, I'm married and my husband is no Mr. Manners. I've heard plenty of belches before and it has never bothered me. When this Pt belched, I felt completely gaggy to the point I wouldn't speak. I was afraid to open my mouth. I took a few seconds to get control over my mind ( and get over the shock of wondering why in the heck a burp was bothering me) and then I encouraged her to "Get em out. That is probably contributing to your nausea." What in the heck is wrong with me? I still think back on that and can't figure it out. Funny thing is, I can hardly relay the story without gagging. WEIRD!
  9. by   C.W.
    Quote from LisaG21
    :imbar Ugh! Mucus is not my thing either! I hate it when people have to be suctioned or are coughing it up! I just clench my teeth and take some deep breaths and try not to look at it more than I have to! lol Even my own makes me sick! Just last night I was trying to get through my shift (I was sick and running a fever, and I only had 2 hours left on my shift (we were really short that is the only reason I was there)) and a man rang the call bell and wanted a bucket I thought he was going to throw up! lol So I gave him the bucket and he spit a big wad of mucus (I am about to gag just thinking about it) and handed it to me. I went to rinse it out and he goes "AREN'T YOU GOING TO LOOK AT IT!" I was like are you kidding me! I already did lol Do you want me to dissect it :imbar :imbar :imbar I didn't say that but i wanted to. I just went into the bathroom and flushed it really fast. UGH!!!

    The only other things that bother me is nasal spray! The sound of someone sniffing it up their nose makes me want to puke! I could never do it myself either! When I see bri picking up the bottle to use it I say wait and run away and close my eyes and ears! lol

    I don't like acidic urine either! It makes me puke lol

    Other than that lol I'm good!!!



    Oh yeah skin that flakes off ! It doens't bother me I am just afraid I will breathe it in lol I had this lady when had cellulitis (I don't think it was but the doc said it was I never seen anything like this) on her whole body! and she honest to god shed like a snake! Her sheets would have to be changed 3-4 times a shift when she bathed I was afraid to touch her cause it looked sooo painful!
    Worse skin flaking/mucous story for me -- Had a CVA patient once who has some type of disease where she couldn't sweat and went fishing in 100 degree Louisiana weather. She had a trach so I had to suction which grosses me out almost as much as vomit does, anyway, her skin came off from all over her body in big CHUNKS. It was all over the bed linens and floor. When I would walk out of her room, I would literlly have chunks of skin on my shoes and it had the WORSE smell ever. Another nurse used Wintergreen freshener to kill the smell, to this day from several years ago, the smell of wintergreen makes me nauseated.
  10. by   Darlene K.
    Quote from LadyBugLass
    More grossouts:

    2. Toenails that look like Frito scoops

    :chuckle OMG - that is just plain sick! :chuckle
  11. by   Darlene K.
    Quote from earle58
    flatulence passed through a high colostomy makes me heave, gag and want to faint. i'm pretty good with all the others.
    I worked GI for 7 years. I remember, if you were in the room from the start of the endoscopy of an colostomy, the smell would be gradual and not as offensive. But if you were called in to assist somewhere in the middle of the procedure.....that STINK would knock you out!
  12. by   lab2004
    Quote from Gator,SN
    The first few weeks in the unit, I thought I'd never get through it, suctioning vent patients and all those secretions! (barf!) for me it was not looking at it that made me sick, it was the sound of it, although at times it was both. One of the RT's got a cup of water and made me use the yankaur to practice with, pretty soon it didn't bother me as much. Without this I'd still be gagging everytime. Maybe this would help you too????

    The bad news is, now I've gotten over suctioning and moved on to total nausea over cleaning food filled dentures........ :imbar :stone
    Is there anyone who doesn't have a problem doing that? Just wondering...
  13. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    It's so strange how someone can have the runs allo over their room, and i wouldn't bat an eye over getting it cleaned up, but the dentures make me go "EYEEEEEEEEEW".

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