Does anyone here actually like or "not mind" cleaning poop??? - page 3

I have just completed my first year as an RN, BSN a couple of weeks ago. Nothing much to celebrate after I find out that I worked that hard only to be cleaning so much poop as a person with a 4 year... Read More

  1. by   Hoozdo
    [quote=kanzi monkey;2408165]. what if it's green and watery?

    that's my favorite kind of poop! break out the flexiseal - let's contain that watery poop. brown and watery is good too, the key word being watery!
  2. by   NotReady4PrimeTime
    I've learned that the easiest way of dealing with smells, be it poop, puke, pseudomonas, whatever is a couple of Altoids. Wintergreen works especially well at desensitizing the nose for a while. Those olfactory bulbs get fried a bit and bingo, no odor.
  3. by   Jerico
    I agree with the $60K a year to clean up feces post.
    AND the one who posted "I like to inspect the skin of my patient post".

    I like DELEGATING to be honest, and then I inspect the skin and tell the CNA "GREAT job on the BIG job!!".

    There is something humbling about cleaning up a helpless person....

    BUT I cannot take the smell without vomiting.
  4. by   bethin
    Quote from MrsNursey2006
    I have just completed my first year as an RN, BSN a couple of weeks ago. Nothing much to celebrate after I find out that I worked that hard
    only to be cleaning so much poop as a person with a 4 year degree.
    I think the nursing profession is too modest and afraid to admit that someone else should be doing the dirty job. I love medicine....and I love being a nurse even when orders pile up, and next shift nags at you for every little thing undone during your shift because of time constrictions, like they come on their shift to just sit around and do nothing. I can take snobby, unexperienced, stubborn doctors; I can get along fine with middle-aged bitter, old nurses; I can handle grumpy patients, and suspicious families; I can handle snobby unlicensed assist. personnel; I can handle all that even when all that can be tiring.
    But on top of all that, we RNs have to clean poop! I think that is why the nursing profession don't get so much credit, that's why nurses grow old bitter and eat the next generation of nurses, it's because they are overworked, underpaid, and cleaning poop really lowers their morale. You get out of school thinking wow i'm a professional....I worked so hard...then you go and clean poooppp....!!! Nasty, foul smelling poop.
    For that reason.....only for that reason I am quitting being a hospital staff nurses at the Veteran's Hospital. I am going to continue being an RN, but not one who cleans poop. I hate that poopy part of our profession, so shoot me.
    No, don't really think that's it. I don't think poop lowers morale. I think it has to do more with management and PG scores and coworkers who think they are better than the job.

    And if you think having a 4 year degree precludes you from cleaning poop: I had a MD with alot more than a 4 year degree help me (a CNA with no degree, what you must think of me) with a complete bath, bed change that included cleaning poop and a turn. You're probably asking why a dr would ever do such a thing. Because that dr knew the meaning of teamwork and even with her multiple degrees she never thought she was above anyone else.

    If you hate cleaning poop that much it's probably best that you quit bedside nursing. It's ok to hate cleaning poop. But coming off as elitist isn't. And I would bet you all the tea in China that you poop and it stinks, and that you wipe your own butt too.

    Funny you mention snobby unlicensed personnel. I just cannot stand snobby licensed personnel.
  5. by   NotReady4PrimeTime
    Quote from bethin
    Funny you mention snobby unlicensed personnel. I just cannot stand snobby licensed personnel.
    Can we maybe avoid getting personal? I don't want to have to put on my moderator hat... Thanks in advance!
  6. by   azor
    i love poop and i dont mind cleaning it as long as my patient is comfortable.When i look at some patient when they lie helpless,i put myself in their shoes.If i am the one lying there,i wouldn't want to lie in my poop,i wil want somebody to clean me up.So,i thank God for putting me in a position where i can make a difference in someone's life.
    Yesterday,i cleaned a lady's poop and collected stool specimen for occult blood,so the lady said''i dont like the smell of the room after doing no 2''.I asked her,''is it your poop or anothers'',She said hers.I laugh cos i know she said it thinking i am feeling some how cos of it but i laughed telling her that it means nothing to me.I opened the door so that the smell can go away then,she'll be comfortable.I am happy when i clean pooop cos i'll expect that for me or my relative if we should lie sick.
  7. by   happydays352
    I'm currently a caregiver, so I clean a lot of poop. It used to make me sick to my stomach, but now I just laugh about it with my coworkers or my patients. Laughter and compassion can make a "crappy" (sorry I had to do it) situation enjoyable.
  8. by   leslie :-D
    nope, no one enjoys cleaning up poop.
    but when i do give a thorough cleaning, not once have i ever felt it was beneath me.
    rather, it has stangely been an honor.
    granted, it doesn't take a refined skillset to perform this feat.
    but it does require a certain mindset to do this, resulting in a positive experience for your pt.
    meaning, to clean, pat dry and leave the room asap, is getting the job done.
    but to clean, pat dry, engage in conversation, not only serves as a tool of distraction, but reinforces your pt's perception of worth.
    to effectively clean up your pt's poop, it will not only result in a clean and refreshed bottom, but will have banished your pt's feelings of embarrassment and shame.

    when we can turn an unpleasant task into one that produces a much relieved (ahem) and grateful customer, we have done a heck of a lot more than clean up poop.
    and who would ever want to feel beneath that?

  9. by   harley007
    This situation just happened to me! I work in a Cardiac Cath Lab. So what are the chances of cleaning up much of anything aside from LOADS of blood? Perhaps every 10 months or so I need to clean somebody. It never bothers me and I feel, as it has been said, that it is part of total care. This recent patient just broke my heart. Something smelled a bit funny as we moved her to the table but I thought it was her breath - sedation does give patients rather odd smelling breath. That poor woman never said a word throught the whole proceedure. As I was putting her nightshirt back on I noticed fecal material on the bottom edge. I told her she had a small "accident" we needed to clean up. She had been aware of it the whole time but was so embarassed she didn't say anything. It held our schedule up a bit but you can believe we got lots of warm water, soap and lotion to make her poor sore bottom feel better. The fact that she suffered rather than tell us made me feel so badly. I came to work in this department for many reason none of whch had to do with not cleaning up BM's. This patient reminded me how important personal care is and I shouldn't assume where an oder is coming from. Here we are monitoring everything from head to toe giving super high level care and I missed something equally important to monitor - patient comfort and total body care. Imagine if I didn't notice her nightshirt and her groin stick had become contaminated from this BM? The higher the level of education the more important total body care should be.
    Last edit by harley007 on Sep 20, '07
  10. by   Chloe'sinNYNow
    that was a beautiful story. Thank you for sharing.

  11. by   november17
    I don't mind cleaning up the poop. I was born into a working class family, and from the time I was old enough to work I realized I was going to work (pardon the pun) "crap jobs." Prior to being a nurse I was a carpenter/general laborer. The only difference is that I get paid more as a nurse. I figured if I was going to work a crap job I might as well get job security and paid more to do it! My general ideology about work is that I'll do anything if the money is right. Well, almost anything. But then again if we were talking in the million dollar an hour range I would do anything. Any time I feel dissatisfied with my job I think back to what I was doing previously and feel thankful that at least I get to work indoors.
    Last edit by november17 on Sep 19, '07
  12. by   leslie :-D
    Quote from harley007
    The higher the level of education the more important total body care should be.
    harley, i really appreciated your post.
    i thought it was wonderful.
    your last statement gave me pause.

    no matter how high the degree, some things just cannot be taught.
    one can be brilliant and educated.
    this does not equate with the needed sensitivity in dealing with such personal and invasive issues.
    actually, i've worked with many cna's who have made their pts feel safe and cared for:
    moreso than the many nurses i've worked with.
    sometimes i think that those who are 'stuck and struggling', are more empathetic to others who suffer-whether it be from embarrassment or more notable hardship.
    just my experience, however.

    anyway, thanks again for the great post.

  13. by   NurseyBaby'05

    I like to tell my guys " . . . .as long as it comes out, I don't care."

    On my first day of orientation for nursing school, we had several of the nursing faculty tell us that nursing is not for everybody and that it was okay if it wasn't for you. There's a lot of things it entails that may not "click" with a person.. There's no shame in knowing one's limitations. The OP's may be body fluid.

    Also, to the OP: One thing I did when pregnant and the sound of someone retching sent me over the edge was to trade "gross jobs" with a co-worker. I got her poop if she got my nausea and vomiting. Could an arrangement like that keep you at bedside? It would be a shame to lose someone from direct patient care if that's the only thing you can't stand.
    Last edit by NurseyBaby'05 on Sep 19, '07