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What is that stench??

Students   (2,355 Views | 18 Replies)
by JessyHsn JessyHsn (New) New

606 Profile Views; 8 Posts

I'm fairly new with the hospital, only 8 weeks in my first semester. I had to deal with an incontinent patient today.. And the smell of the room he was in, idk if it was from him making a mess all over his bed or what, but the smell will not get out of my head.. I sprayed myself with perfume, I tried to take a shower thinking that it was just on me from being in there, but it just won't go away.. Is this normal??! How can I make it go away! I'm so grossed out by this point from the smell...

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AnnieOaklyRN is a BSN, RN, EMT-P and specializes in ED, Pedi Vasc access, Paramedic serving 6 towns.

1 Follower; 2,577 Posts; 34,984 Profile Views

Well, this may not be the right profession for you if you are that bothered by bad smells. Sometimes certain smell just get into your nose for a few days, but eventually it goes away, just make sure you wash your uniform and bleach and you didn't get any on your shoes...

HPRN

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loriangel14 is a RN and specializes in Acute Care, Rehab, Palliative.

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Yes quite often bodily fluids smell. You will get used to it. Not that you will like it but but you will get used to it.

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292 Posts; 5,506 Profile Views

Best thing to kill smells on your person isn't a shower or perfume- it is shaving cream.

One of the most useful pieces of info I learned in the ED

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40 Posts; 1,241 Profile Views

You're still new - it takes time for some to be able to let that go when you walk out of the room.

My little guy is in diapers and the smell of urine or feces don't bother me (unless we're talking C-Diff - nothing in the world will ever make me be OK with the smell of C-Diff). Blood doesn't have any kind of effect on me. But mucus and phlegm still make my stomach turn. We all have our quirks, but eventually we get a little desensitized and it gets easier.

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TheCommuter has 14 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych.

4 Followers; 226 Articles; 27,607 Posts; 321,240 Profile Views

How can I make it go away!

You cannot make it go away. However, as time passes, your olfaction will become acclimated to the different stenches and they will not smell as bad to you anymore.

Many years ago the smell of peoples' fecal matter made me want to gag. However, my sense of smell has become so accustomed to poop that it doesn't bother me anymore.

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SopranoKris has 5 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Critical Care.

3,102 Posts; 33,355 Profile Views

If there is an odor that makes you feel like it's "trapped" in your sinuses, you can alleviate it by putting a little dab of Vick's Vaporub under each nostril. I learned that trick when I used to work with a veterinarian. There are just some smells that "stick" with you and you can't seem to shake, even when you're away from it. The Vaporub always worked well! :D

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927 Posts; 9,570 Profile Views

Best thing to kill smells on your person isn't a shower or perfume- it is shaving cream.

One of the most useful pieces of info I learned in the ED

Hmmm....I'm a guy and I am having trouble with this. So what do you do? Just spray the gel/foam on your hand and inhale it? or do you mean when you shave and the scent is still right below your nose?

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mrsboots87 has 5 years experience and specializes in Neuro, Telemetry.

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I second the vicks vapor rub under the nostrils. Once of the staff nurses at clinical told me to do this as well as two of my instructors. It works great. I am a little more crunchy and don't use petroleum, and instead use an organic eucalyptus vapor rub that is similar and it works wonders. I would assume the vicks works just as well. Especially since multiple people have sworn by it. The trick is to put a dab on before you go into the room so the patient doesnt see. Especially if you know you will be cleaning a code brown.

And this might be off the wall, but at some department stores they leave coffee grounds in a jar for sniffing between perfumes to clear the nares of the previous perfumes scent. I have never tried it, but if you can't get rid of the smell, it couldn't hurt to try sniffing ground coffee and see if it works. GL

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292 Posts; 5,506 Profile Views

Hmmm....I'm a guy and I am having trouble with this. So what do you do? Just spray the gel/foam on your hand and inhale it? or do you mean when you shave and the scent is still right below your nose?

Use it instead of soap for the smells that stick to your skin. There are some old threads on AN about it as well as using it on patients who need a little extra help in the smell department as well.

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AlwaysLearning247 has 4 years experience as a BSN.

1 Follower; 383 Posts; 6,657 Profile Views

Oh wow, you're still bothered by the smell? Try chewing gum or something. You'll get used to the smells, eventually. I am a nursing student and a CNA. I smell c-diff very frequently being an aide in long term care. At first I thought it was pretty gross but you will get over it and it really wont phase you anymore. Good luck!

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927 Posts; 9,570 Profile Views

^ faze, not phase. watch out for those homonyms.

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