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10 Reasons Why Nurses Get Sick

10 Reasons Why Nurses Get Sick

Sean Dent | Scrubs Magazine

January 19, 2010

We clean everything we can get our hands on. While this can be great for fighting off those nasty bugs that can wreak havoc on your immune system, there really is some truth to the saying, “Too much of a good thing is bad.”

Here are the top ten reasons why we get sick despite all that cleaning.

Not Washing Our Hands


We sure don’t practice what we preach all the time do we? C’mon admit it. Do you wash your hands every single time you go in and out of every patient room? Before and after every contact?

Also, are you washing your hands after each contact with a patients chart? How about the bedside glucometer?

Not Enough Sleep


Research has proven that sleep deprivation will lower your immune system. But, even without research on my side, think about how you and your body felt after not sleeping well for just one night! How about a whole string of nights during the week?

Too Much Work


Go right ahead and work those extra shifts. While your paycheck is inflating, your energy reserve is deflating. Guess what happens to your immune system when you get run down? Hey, don’t get me wrong, I like the overtime as much as the next nurse, but there has to be a balance between the extra shifts and taking care of yourself.

Not Drinking Enough Fluids


Who has time to drink? Well, non of us do, but can you say Urinary Tract Infection? I don’t know about you, but when your body is made up of more water than any other molecule (upwards of 65% water), that means something don’t you think?

Not Cleaning Our Stethoscope


This goes hand-in-hand with the hand washing, yes that was an intentional pun. Think about all the times you use your stethoscope and not clean it in between each patient use. Ever let someone else borrow your stethoscope? Where do you think their hands were? Did they clean the stethoscope? Did they wash their hands?


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    neerukp

    over 2 years ago

    7468 comments

    Associated Stress

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    HerbalNurse

    over 2 years ago

    466 comments

    I use essential oils to help with my exposure to germs. I have done this for over 5 years, and when I am actively doing this, I do not get sick...

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    ginasettle

    about 3 years ago

    2 comments

    stress.....

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    Katchuu

    over 3 years ago

    2 comments

    Sleep deprivation is at the root of every mistake you can make. Sleep is when your brain cells and your immune system recharge. Brain fog and a compromised immune system is dangerous!

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    Andy13

    over 3 years ago

    4 comments

    Stress has never been a big problem for me. Good company and lots of booze have always helped me cope with nervous tension:)
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    Andy13

    over 3 years ago

    4 comments

    Stress has never been a big problem for me. Good company and lots of booze have always helped me cope with nervous tension:)
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    Bailey940

    over 3 years ago

    4 comments

    Stress is my number 1 enemy. When things are going good and patient load is not over bearing I hardly get sick. Usually management causes the stress!!!!

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    savannahpam

    almost 4 years ago

    4 comments

    I got a nasty conjunctivitis about 2 months ago from not thinking and rubbing my eyes which were dry from the air conditioning running during a heat wave in our city. The only thing that I could think of that I did was handle patient charts and my pen which patients used to sign their discharge instruction sheets. I always washed my hands/used sanitizer before and after patient contact. Now I use the hand sanitizer in our nursing station a lot more often! And I cut my nails shorter and don't touch my nose, face or eyes at work. And I keep a separate pen for patients to use and rub sanitizer on it. I also got a nasty respiratory virus a month ago that lasted 10 days from an ill charge nurse who came in sick to work and infected about 5 of us.

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    irish_ivy1982

    almost 4 years ago

    2 comments

    A lack of sleep is my worst enemy!

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    Nurse_John

    almost 4 years ago

    28266 comments

    All very good reasons, but if you wash your hands before entering and leaving a patients room, you will cut down on the majority of illnesses.

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    SeaneFoote

    almost 4 years ago

    4 comments

    Perhaps an alarm could be built into the nurses tools of trade that prompts them to clean. They would be the most at risk working group to carry illness. This not only places them at risk, but their patients who are often in a fragile low state of wellness.

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    aspiringnurse_cebu

    almost 4 years ago

    30 comments

    i get sick due to my mindset of being sick...

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    jmilks2004

    almost 4 years ago

    2436 comments

    Wash your hands .............

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    kgarrison

    about 4 years ago

    20 comments

    I am rarely sick. I work in a nursing home, instead of a hospital, at this point, but I have done clinicals in the Er and such. I think it's important to use hand-sanitizer and to wash your hands, but that's about it. I don't stress about it or go over-the-top. Try to take your vitamins and eat well, but no need to go overboard. Also important that when you do start to feel ill, you immediatley tackle it with one of the many OTC products out there such as Zicam, lots of rest, and lots of fluids. The only thing I would say I'm pretty careful about is that I wash my uniform after every wear (that includes the jacket). My shoes I spray with lysol or a bleach mix and leave in the garage when I get home. Not so much for me, but because I don't want to bring work germs into my home and around my children who may not have immune systems as developed as mine...

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    Chickie

    about 4 years ago

    2 comments

    The main reason I get sick is due to the long hours and no breaks....especially time to drink anything. This makes for a very stressful time while at work. We are not allowed to have anything to drink out of the break room and after getting report in the mornings none of us usually see the breakroom again until shift change 12 and 1/2 hours later. If we are lucky enough to get a lunch break it is usually 2-3 o'clock in the afternoon.......quite a length of time since before leaving home at 6 o'clock in the morning. I have noticed the only people in the hospital getting regular lunch breaks are administration, social workers, case managers and the volunteers. It does no good to complain because if you do your job is in danger. I can only hope to go work for a hospital that cares about their employees.

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