'Unhealthy' nurses...bad examples?

  1. I hope this post doesn't offend anyone,but I have noticed a lot of the nurses I know are overweight,smokers or both. Obviously people become nurses because they completed school,and are qualified to do their jobs,which has nothing to do with physical appearance or vices.

    Its common knowledge that smoking and/or obesity can kill you,but I would think those in the healthcare field would have a more acute idea of how health is jeopardized by these things. I am asking one out of curiousity,and secondly because I myself am overweight. I was just wondering if anybody has ever gotten any flak from patients or higher-ups? Or do you feel you aren't taken as seriously because of how you look,or because you need a cigarette break? I hope this hasn't happened,since its discriminatory and wrong,but we all know that doesn't mean much!
  2. Visit fifi2323 profile page

    About fifi2323

    Joined: Apr '06; Posts: 33
    future nursing student...I hope

    284 Comments

  3. by   P_RN
    No flak. Overweight, don't smoke, don't drink, have a px every year, mammogram etc. MVI, anticholysterol, asa 81 mg. Doing the best I can. Why do you ask? Do you feel like this?
  4. by   Luv2BAnurse
    I've never personally gotten any flak (I am overweight...naw, go ahead and say it..OBESE) for my personal appearance, although those press ganey reports revealed that someone thought that the hospital's nurses were "too big". I don't drink, quit smoking 4 years ago, rarely exercise, even though I know that I should. I give encouragement/reinforcement to my patients as needed and I know they can see that I should/could take better care of my body. They also KNOW that I am taking care of theirs while in the hospital. The majority of my patients are darned glad to see me coming especially when it's time for pain medicine or for help moving up in bed.
    I also think this may be more of an issue if the majority of nurses are small to average size. The hospital I am speaking of, half of the nurses were overweight....but half of the patients were too!
  5. by   Elisheva
    Ask me if I want a thin, lousy nurse or an overweight competent one?
  6. by   ktwlpn
    Quote from fifi2323
    I hope this post doesn't offend anyone,but I have noticed a lot of the nurses I know are overweight,smokers or both. Obviously people become nurses because they completed school,and are qualified to do their jobs,which has nothing to do with physical appearance or vices.
    Its common knowledge that smoking and/or obesity can kill you,but I would think those in the healthcare field would have a more acute idea of how health is jeopardized by these things. I am asking one out of curiousity,and secondly because I myself am overweight. I was just wondering if anybody has ever gotten any flak from patients or higher-ups? Or do you feel you aren't taken as seriously because of how you look,or because you need a cigarette break? I hope this hasn't happened,since its discriminatory and wrong,but we all know that doesn't mean much!
    Do a search on this board-you'll find numerous threads on this topic.Most ended up locked.As for me-I don't really care if my doctor smokes or my president screws around (or if my DOCTOR screws around either)-just as long as they are competent to perform their duties.I think my persoanl life is just that-unless I am impaired on the job.
  7. by   PANurseRN1
    Now you have a problem with people who are overweight or smoke? You have another thread going where talk about your problem with "older" co-workers.

    It's not really appropriate to be judging others based on age/weight/appearance. We all have our own unhealthy habits. You ought to be thankful there are good nurses out there, regardless of how much they weigh/whether they smoke.
  8. by   VivaLasViejas
    Quote from ktwlpn
    Do a search on this board-you'll find numerous threads on this topic.Most ended up locked.As for me-I don't really care if my doctor smokes or my president screws around (or if my DOCTOR screws around either)-just as long as they are competent to perform their duties.I think my persoanl life is just that-unless I am impaired on the job.
    Well said! BRAVO!!
  9. by   txspadequeenRN
    I remember a while back there was a thread like this and it became a hot thread requiring several coolong off periods....
  10. by   txspadequeenRN
    Good Grief.
    Last edit by Roy Fokker on Sep 24, '06
  11. by   ktwlpn
    Professional competency is important to me-that is what matters to the patient's outcome..
    Last edit by VivaLasViejas on Sep 17, '06 : Reason: quoting deleted post
  12. by   cookielady,rn
    Quote from Elisheva
    Ask me if I want a thin, lousy nurse or an overweight competent one?
    I also can't stand not being able to breathe around coworkers becasuse they smell like an ashtray.
    Last edit by Roy Fokker on Sep 24, '06 : Reason: Offtopic
  13. by   mercyteapot
    The OP in this thread is asking a different question, though. Not whether we think nurses ''shouldn't'' be overweight or smoke, but whether those of us who are or do have taken any flak for it. It is ironic where I work, though, I became a manager after they demoted another woman. She had been hired based on her drop dead good looks and high fashion sense, but she was dumber than a bag of hammers.
  14. by   HeartsOpenWide
    I have a friend who once said that she would "not want a 'fat' nurse" but she also says she is going to have an elective c-section when she has a baby because "vaginal babies have funny looking head when they come out"...go figure. Weight does not affect intelligence, lack of it or too much. As long as they are able be to be mobile and move around efficiently and are clean and do not smell, who cares? I could see how a client might be reluctant to take Nutritional direction from an obese dietitian, but there are many factor that play into weight....
    As far as smoking, I know a very good doctor that smokes and drinks coffee like its water. He never smells either. What one does on their own time, whether it is drink, smoke or eat McDonald's is their business. Not every good mechanic drives a brand new sports car...

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