wedding band-hand sanitizer q

  1. Hello....

    For those of you that wear wedding bands, especially if there are diamonds, do you have any problems with the hand sanitizer weakening the setting and losing stones and/or ruining the gold?

    I read a couple threads on this, but that question was not answered (I do try to search for answers from past threads first!)

    I have a small channel set band in white gold (perhaps white gold is the problem?) that I really never gave a second thought if I could or couldn't wear it in nursing school and then on the job. Because it's very flat it can't possibly scratch...but then I'm reading it can harbor fluids, blood, etc...but I thought that's why nurses wear gloves!

    Are you really not wearing gloves as much when handling patients? Also I understand there may be a difference between the powdered gloves and the purple ones. I understand the ring can get gooped up with soap/moisturizer but that also isn't a huge concern as I soak mine everyday in a vinegar solution (a tip my chem prof gave me!) and he told me that dissolves all dirt, oils etc b/c of the polarity.

    Sorry if this is a goofy question, but I'm really curious and I'd really like to wear at least my band as it's more than just the "symbol" for me, but if it's going to get ruined then I'd rather err on the side of caution and wear a plain gold one.

    Can you tell I start nursing school in less than 3 mos and I'm just going nuts with the overwhelming reality that soon I am leaving my current job and embarking on this new journey? What am I thinking???

    Anyway I'm very analytical so I like to figure things out ahead of time even though when I plan, God usually laughs
    TIA

    Michele
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    About Kitty Hawk

    Joined: Jun '05; Posts: 551; Likes: 217
    Hospice Case Manager; from US
    Specialty: 5 year(s) of experience in hospice, ortho,clinical review

    26 Comments

  3. by   clee1
    I wear my plain wedding band every day - no problems.
  4. by   twinmommy+2
    I would say if you have any questions about its safety, then wear it on a plain necklace or like at my work we have a plastic sleeve that we can fit our badges in, and perhaps your ring would fit in that. Wedding bands are so expensive and irreplaceable it would be sad to have it damaged.
  5. by   Flare
    i have a wedding band similar to the op's. white gold channel set with diamonds. Honestly i did once lose a stone out of it, but the jeweler said it was a flaw with the way the channel bowed. I do occasionally get soap and otehr goopy stuff under there and it cleans out fairly easily -though i do occasionally get a rash inder the rings - then i need to give that skin a break and put the rings on a chain around my neck.
  6. by   dekatn
    I've worn the same wedding band with diamonds for 35 yrs. never had a problem with it. Clean it and have it checked regularly by a jeweler for loose or weak fittings.
  7. by   TiffyRN
    The unit I work in doesn't allow rings with stones; but it's NICU and most floors don't require that. But the reason they don't allow it is that germs will hide in the crannies around those stones that don't wash off easily. It sounds like soaking your ring once a day will help cut down the bacterial count. I would get a plain band to 1) Protect the patients and you from bacterial contamination
    2) Protect your ring from damage from all those substances it will be exposed to during your shift.

    I personally don't wear any rings during my shifts but my ring has deep engravings on the outside and I believe would trap bacteria though it isn't specifically forbidden. Also I always wind up with rashes after a couple of shifts if I wear any rings.

    And yes, ideally nurses wear gloves when they anticipate exposure to substances, but sometimes we don't anticipate correctly and bacteria does not live exclusively in blood and body fluids.
  8. by   brighella
    I just got married and was thinking about this very question, as my wedding band has channel set small diamonds. I definitely didnt wear my engagement ring to clinicals, and just before the spring semester started me and my hunny went and got me a stainless steel band to wear to clinicals/work. It cost all of $16 but sanitizes easily and still looks pretty nice. Hubby said he still would like me to have something nice (both his ring and my "parade" rings as I refer to them are platinum) so I suggested that a plain platinum band would be a woooonderful graduation present

    Sarah
  9. by   81Bubbles
    if you are wearing the white gold you are going to need to have it re-plated rather regularly. it will start to turn yellow as the rodium plating wears off from frequent use of sanitizer etc.
    The stones will not get loose and the prongs will not either (besides most white gold rings have platinum or palladium prongs wich are much more durable)
    I wouldn't wear a white gold ring.
  10. by   Mulan
    simple solution, leave the rings at home
  11. by   queenjean
    We've noticed an increase of this on our floor since using hand sanitizer, though I think the action of taking on and off gloves can also weaken the settings.

    One of our nurses has lost three small diamonds from her ring, and when she last took it in, the large stone was also loose.

    I personally do not wear any rings at work. I *do* think it is an infection control issue, but honestly, my main motivation is that the rings are too precious to me. I don't want to damage or lose them.
  12. by   CuriousMe
    Quote from tarshamarie123
    if you are wearing the white gold you are going to need to have it re-plated rather regularly. it will start to turn yellow as the rodium plating wears off from frequent use of sanitizer etc.
    The stones will not get loose and the prongs will not either (besides most white gold rings have platinum or palladium prongs wich are much more durable)
    I wouldn't wear a white gold ring.
    I'm confused, isn't there a difference between gold plated (yellow or white) and white gold? I don't care for yellow gold, so all my gold jewelry is white gold. I've never seen it turn yellow.

    Peace,
    Cathie
  13. by   81Bubbles
    it was something I never learned until I entered nursing there is no true white gold it's a gold alloy that is rodium plated to keep it looking whiter. When the plating wears off it will not be as yellow as yellow gold. However it will not look the same and sometime the plating does not wear evenly and you'll have discolored spots.
    Talk to a jewler or even look it up you'd be suprised and even though you may not have noticed put your rings next to something white gold that is new and they probably will be no where near the same color
  14. by   Agent99
    I have a white gold wedding ring with diamonds set in the front of the band. The gold part in the back is discolored and I get a bad rash underneath from washing my hands too much. I have to get it re-plated.

    I wear a yellow gold eternity band ring with diamonique stones to work now. I got it on QVC, it's pretty, doesn't give me a rash and has not discolored.

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