How To Deal With Bad Smells

by crees1234 crees1234 (New) New

As we all know one of the downsides of being a nurse can be the smells we encounter on a day to day basis. It doesn't matter if you work in a hospital, nursing home or a patient's personal home, it's safe to say we have smelled some pretty nasty things.

I have recently graduated nursing school and work for a home health company. For some reason smells are my biggest downfall as a nurse.

I want to open a discussion around what remedies or solutions you have come up with (or products that are available) to help you deal with the really bad smells you've encountered. Weather it's chewing a piece a gum or putting on a mask. I would like to know what has worked best for you.



Specializes in Med-Surg, Telemetry, Stepdown, ICU. Has 2 years experience.

Wear really good deodorant and act as though you are itching your nose as you bring it towards your arm pit to inhale the burst of freshness there. It is a modest way of getting a break in when the environment is polluted with awful smells.

I heard vapor rub works, I'm going to try that soon;)

Little bit of tiger balm (or any other mentholated rub type product) under the nose.

Take up kills the sense of smell! :lol2: j/k

JRP1120, RN

Has 1 years experience.

Little bit of tiger balm (or any other mentholated rub type product) under the nose.

Tiger balm? What is that?

Tiger balm? What is that?

It's kind of like Ben Gay, a mentholated balm for sore muscles, etc... But it's not a gel, it's more like lip balm consistency. It's pretty available here on the west coast. I think it's from Singapore or something. Ask at the drug store.


Specializes in ICU.

I was born with a bad sense of smell. The only thing that gags me is GI bleed. Urp!

Take up kills the sense of smell! :lol2: j/k

*runs to the store to buy a carton of Camel Crush*


bagladyrn, RN

Specializes in OB.

For the really,really bad ones wear a mask with a cottonball in it with a few drops of tincture of benzoin. You won't be able to smell anything else.

IdrilRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Psych. Has 12 years experience.

Strong mint, gum, cough drop, spray the room. I would say open a window, but heaven forbid that happens in a hospital.

The worst time for me with smells was when I was pregnant.

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