Out of nursing program cause i am smoker!!! - page 12

Help, I am at risk of being out of the nursing program because I am a smoker. I really could use some advise on how to deal with a very unfair instructor. I am a first year PN student and we... Read More

  1. by   fleur-de-lis
    Quote from misstaz25
    I really dont want to hear anymore stories of how people are allergic to the smell of smoke... Personally I feel I should be able to smoke in the morning before I am on her time.
    Obviously you do not get it. It is not that the smell of smoke is simply unpleasant. It has serious medical reprecussions for many people, even when it is simply on your clothes.

    I believe in personal rights, but they should not infringe on the rights of others. You have the right to smoke on your own time, but you dont have the right to then go to clinicals reeking of smoke and risk causing medical distress to patients (or co-workers). You and anyone has the right to smoke, but I have the right not to have to breathe it. Comparing it to perfume or people who overeat is ridiculous. While strong perfume can be annoying, it has far fewer toxins than cigarette smoke and generally causes fewer medical problems. Any I have never seen anyone medically harmed by another person taking a third trip to the buffet - come on!

    We all have faults, there is no denying that. When our faults begin threatening to harm others, and we are in the healthcare field to help others, I think we need to take a real hard look at ourselves.
  2. by   SCRN1
    Just face it, those who don't like the smell of smoke are not going to agree with you and will justify it any way they can. I'm not saying it doesn't happen, but I've never met anyone anywhere who is so allergic to smoke that they've had an asthma attack. However, I have met some who have to perfume.
  3. by   jimthorp
    Quote from caroladybelle
    The point is, Jim< that you say that nursing students should not be held to different/stricter standards than other students. But as noted by your response, it obvious that they DO get held to higher standards. I doubt if the liberal arts students have a pee test, get a background check, etc.

    Nursing IS held to a higher standard.
    I did not say nursing students should not be held to a higher standard when it comes to a illegal activity. A pee test, child abuse and criminal background checks are to detect illegal activity. Considering nursing students are placed in a more responsible position with direct patient care and all it seems appropriate. Smoking however, is a legal activity.
  4. by   jimthorp
    Quote from fleur-de-lis
    While strong perfume can be annoying, it has far fewer toxins than cigarette smoke and generally causes fewer medical problems.
    I am wondering if you can back this up with facts? I know a smoker who get's asthma attacks with the odor of perfume or cologne.
  5. by   banditrn
    Quote from SCRN1
    Just face it, those who don't like the smell of smoke are not going to agree with you and will justify it any way they can. I'm not saying it doesn't happen, but I've never met anyone anywhere who is so allergic to smoke that they've had an asthma attack. However, I have met some who have to perfume.
    Yep, I'm one of those who can't tolerate perfumes and aftershaves and all those foo-foo odors! Gives me a nasty headache, then nausea!

    To the OP - I smoked when I went to nursing school, and that was back in the days when the rules were a LOT less stringest than they are now - but then I got a look at how it would be when I was in clinicals - never having the time to go out for a break - so I finally kicked the habit. And I was a heavy smoker - I was glad to finally have that monster off my back!!

    Those that think that they can spray themselves with something or use a breath mint to mask the odor - doesn't usually work.
  6. by   Memerson2000
    "I really dont want to hear anymore stories of how people are allergic to the smell of smoke."

    Now, that's spoken like a true addict! Don't get between me and my ciggies. I reek of smoke but your allergy is your problem.

    Again, I'll defend your right to do it, and I think you should consult an attorney regarding the apparent violation of your civil rights.
  7. by   jsluv2run
    I am sorry you have to go through that. It is too bad she has not approached the situation in a more professional way. I can understand about smelling smoke or concentrated perfume on a nurse. As a patient, I became nauseated from this nurse who applied too much perfume. Another time it was a nurse who was a smoker and must have just returned from a break because her breath,hair, skin and uniform wreaked of smoke and made me so sick I was dry heaving. I do think their needs to be some consideration for the patients, but she also needs to approach it in a different way. Best of luck to you.
  8. by   nurse4theplanet
    I am a smoker also.

    First things first. You knew the instructor's policy and deliberately broke it. Don't get me wrong, I know the effects of the addiction full force. I endured several 12 hour clinical days with headaches, loss of concentration, and nicotine fits. But I adhered to the rules for two years because I wanted my degree.

    I do agree that her punishment is rather harsh. Should you fight her on it? Well, that's up to you. Is it worth risking getting an incomplete and not being able to continue on in the program? IMO, I would say no.

    There are several reasons for not smoking before and during clinical that benefit the patient. It would be ridiculous to argue otherwise. Yes, you have rights and as long as cigarettes are legal, then you should be able to smoke. But keep in mind that your rights end where another's begin. That's how resturaunts, businesses, and hospitals are able to institute smoking restrictions, no smoking policies, etc. You must adhere to these policies.

    Right now, my hospital is a smoking facility with a designated smoking area. I do smoke at work. But when the facility eventually goes to a non-smoking policy then I will have to abide by that policy to keep my job. That's just the way the world works. Everyone has bad habits, be it smoking or overeating etc. etc. etc., but if your bad habits are effecting your ability to get a degree or remain employed...well, I'd have to argue on the side of common sense and say that employment and my education are far more important than insisting that I be able to smoke.

    I'm sorry for what you have been through and I do empathize with you. I hope things work out for the best and I hope you continue on in the program. I do believe your instructor is letting her personal views strongly influence her punishment for your behavoir. But in the end, you have to decide what's most important. Once you are out of the program, you don't have to abide by her rules. But don't let your refusal to follow her rules keep you from graduating the program.
  9. by   wooh
    Quote from SCRN1
    I'm not saying it doesn't happen, but I've never met anyone anywhere who is so allergic to smoke that they've had an asthma attack.
    Haven't seen someone have an asthma attack, but I've watched kids desat by 10-15% when their parents come back in the room from smoking. Kid's O2 sat will be fine while parent is out smoking, they return to the room and hover over the kid and it drops. And it will happen with EVERY return from smoking.
  10. by   wincha
    You need to go to the director of your nursing school over this. She has gone over the edge. While I do not smoke many nurses and physicians do. I would take care of trying not to smell like smoke around this woman. I would write the paper but I would talk to the director of the nursing school about NOT having your grade docked. This teacher cannot make her own policies.
  11. by   puggymae
    What does your program student handbook say about smoking? Is there a course syllabus related to this clinical rotation? Does it mention the docking of points for smoking? If this is not mentioned in the handbook, or in a syllabus then this basically cannot be enforced.

    In our program we prohibit smoking - but it is spelled out in the packet you get when you inquire about application to the program; it is reiterated at program orientation if you are accepted into the program. If a student smells of cigarette smoke at clinical they are sent home. This lowers their final grade 5.5% (all clinical absences lower the final grade by 5.5%).

    The instructor cannot make up the rules as she goes along to suit her fancy.
  12. by   nursing-gyyyrl
    I know that so many people are against smoking, HOWEVER, if you choose to smoke, then it is your choice. As long as you do not break the rules of your schools smoking policy, then you have every right to smoke on your time! If your GRADES are being threatened or "docked" because you're smoking on your own time, then that is unacceptable! Many people hate smoking, many people also hate alot of things that others do in this world, however, it does not give them the right to threaten you or make you feel intimidated. If you are not breaking any policies, & she is threatening your grade because you make a personal choice to smoke & she does not agree, that, then is unethical. She wanted you to write a paper on "Patient Abandonment:? DId you leave your pt. not on break? That, then is not acceptable, however, if you were on a lunch break or personal break properly excused from the floor, then she is way out of line... I've read alot of replies from others on this site, saying you should "suck it up" etc.. I'll tell you this much-If I am doing things as per protocol, & my GRADE is being "docked" because someone does not agree w/a legal personal choice I make on my own time, then I would seek the direction of someone w/in the school. Again, if you are following protocol, then she has NO RIGHT to threaten you/your grade!!
  13. by   joyflnoyz
    [quote=mamason;2009373]I've followed this thread from the beginning. My point is....this instructor, wether right or wrong, explained her expectations for clinicals. And the OP chose not to follow them. That's why she is in the position that she is in.


    uh, mamason, the original poster DID accept the disciplinary action that she was warned about before clinicals began.( the grade being docked) What she is upset and indignant (rightly so, I might add) is the fact that the CI **ADDED "PUNISHMENT" ****after the fact**** (talking to the OP in a public place, adding on papers to write, threatening to run and tell mommy-- intimidating the student. <hmmm do the words "hostile work environment ring a bell? I wonder if they apply to an educational setting..>
    Changed the rules midstream, as it were. That's just WRONG!

    punitive(to punish), not disciplinary(to teach)

    From the information we have, the instructor is a bully.

    Bullies keep bullying until someone stands up against the behavior.


    i say HOORAY to the O.P. I think she has handled it well, and maturely.

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