Student Body OdorRegister Today!
- by hsnurse1 Feb 28I'm a high school nurse and am wondering how you all handle student body odor complaints. It is a delicate issue and I feel like I'm walking a fine line of being accused of singling a student out.
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- Feb 28 by ob-rncOh the odors! That is probably the most difficult subject to learn to navigate through in any area of nursing. Earlier this year there were several complaints from kids in one grade at our high school. The class president even asked me to just come and speak to everyone as a group. I put together a power-point presentation, made a handout with cute cartoon pics of a female and male skunk grooming themselves on the front, and downloaded a few cartoonish videos from youtube to show on hygiene and one Pepe LePue Cartoon to demonstrate how he did not realize he smelled bad though others around him did.... I also took several pieces of rags and placed them into zip bags with smelly matter to demonstrate how our clothes can hold onto certain smells and discussed how our noses become accustomed to the smell after constant exposure, but that doesn't mean others can't smell it.... For example, I lit a cigarette let it burn for a few seconds then snuffed it out in a rag and placed it in the zip bag, I also used good smelling things like a rag soaked with fabric softener, peppermint extract, etc.... The kids were great, the videos lightened the mood and for a few kids who participated the most I passed out gifts of deodorant, body wash...Like a door prize.
Doing the whole class was great, because it prevented the singling-out of one person, leading to the awkward embarrassing moments. Also, ( I will jinx myself for saying this) but I have not had one complaint since then and that was in November! I am planning to make it an annual educational opportunity
Hope this helps!
- Feb 28 by SadalaI was a little unclear about your post... The entire student body smells, the entire student body is complaining about smells, or the body odor of one particular student is garnering complaints?
Also - Who's doing the complaining?
- Feb 28 by man-nurse2bummmm I like the frank approach...hi student X here's a free deodorant..you stink! use it!! ok that's bad...
option 2 you can do a personal hygiene class and give the class free brushes , soap and deodorant and hope it don't break your bank...hygiene is part of nursing you know...its stinks but someone gotta do it. lol
- Mar 1 by HolyPeasBe gentle with the kid, but let them know that it's noticeable. Ask them if they need anything, because you never know whats going on at home. The washing machine could be malfunctioning, they might not have the things they need to take care of the smell, and frankly, some kids are just freaking smelly and they need to shower more than the average person.
Be nice. Let them know this conversation is completely private, no one has complained about them (even if they have, kinds can be sensitive, just be cool) and have some bodywash, and deodorant to give the kid if you are allowed. Otherwise be prepared to set them up with organizations that can provide things like that.
- Mar 1 by Live.&.LearnI'm in nursing school right now and last semester we did presentations on wellness promotion, 2 girls did one on skin cancer and contacted some companies to get free samples of different sun screens and face creams. I think the first comment is right on, great approach to involve all of the students. Maybe you could get some free samples of deodorant, body wash, etc. Kids that age don't respond well to criticism, so tread lightly and be "cool" if you do have to approach individuals. Back to the free sample idea, maybe email several companies so that you can keep things on hand to give to kids...good luck with this one. I imagine that your job is no easy feat. Keep up the good work
- Mar 1 by FlareOver the years, I've tried it both ways with a general class and with speaking to the kid one on one. Truth be told, the whole class approach seldom has the desired impact on the target student. The direct approach has (for me anyhow) proven to be more effective. It is possible to tell a student they need to be more mindful of their hygiene and bathe regularly and wash their clothing in a gentle manner. And using a direct approach, I can't tell you how many times i've come across a dire social situation that nobody was aware of (student hasn't had power for last 3 weeks, no hot water, living on someone's sofa) So I feel like taking the direct approach gives me a chance in an empty office to ask the student if everything is okay at home or if there is anything we should know about or might want to talk about.
- Mar 1 by amygarsideTake a bath and use a deodorant. That is the best advice I can make.
- Mar 1 by caregiver1977Quote from amygarsideI don't think the OP was confused about how to solve their OWN body odor issues. Maybe I am just tired and can't read today.Take a bath and use a deodorant. That is the best advice I can make.
- Mar 1 by GrnTeaQuote from SadalaThis is early adolescence-- most of them are just beginning to have functioning apocrine glands, have newly hairy places that need more washing, have extra secretions/excretions that provide food for bacteria, be shy about showering in gym, and they're embarrassed to ask their moms to start picking up the extra stick of deodorant on the grocery run. Many of them smell bad, they all need to learn this.I was a little unclear about your post... The entire student body smells, the entire student body is complaining about smells, or the body odor of one particular student is garnering complaints?
Also - Who's doing the complaining?
Ob-rnc, I think that's a brilliant educational effort and the news of it will be handed down from class to class and enter into legend. Your faculty must be kissing your feet.