Things Nurses Should Take Care Of While Choosing ScrubsThe scrub set comprising of a loose top and pants is the standard uniform for nurses in the US and in several other countries. Some hospitals have come up with uniform regulations that specific colors, cut and fit. However, in most health care centers, nursing staff is allowed to wear scrubs of personal choice. If you are a first time nurse looking to buy scrubs for your job, here are a few things that you should know about selecting the right scrubs.

Your Scrub Should Not Display Skin Or Inner wear

Your scrubs should fit you comfortably and move with, not against, your body. When you try on scrubs, make sure the pants don’t slide down your hips and display your inner wear when you bend. This not only looks unprofessional but is also very embarrassing for staff and patients alike. Well fitting pants should have a wide inseam and fit comfortably at your waist. Also, make sure that the top is not so loosely cut that it allows skin to be viewed through the neckline.

Your Scrub Color Matters

Before you buy your scrubs, get an idea of your employer’s color scheme. If there’s no specific rule, pick colors that are strong and dark, such as black, navy blue, dark brown and maroon. These hold stains much better than light shades.

Choose Scrubs With Pockets

Pockets are your friends; you can stuff many handy items in them. Since you’ll be carrying a patient chart, a stethoscope or other equipment in your hands, you need pockets to store other things. Things such as alcohol pads, a pair of scissors, and even a pair of gloves must be kept in pockets for handy use. So pick tops and pants with roomy pockets. Some designers don’t include pockets for women, since bulky pockets interfere with the body shape.

Choose Scrubs Of Good Quality

Even if it means you have to spend more, buy scrubs from a good quality manufacturer. Don’t compromise on the quality just because you spotted a few cheap pairs at Walmart. Remember that you have to be in time for your shifts and you cannot bother with linty scrubs, or scrubs with the stitching coming out, or scrubs with the color washed out. Get one good pair instead of 5 bad ones.

Buy Scrubs That Are Soft

You’ll have to wear your scrubs all day long. 100% cotton, breathable scrubs in a soft finish are probably the best. Even if your scrubs have some polyester and spandex in them, get the softest ones you can afford. The material should be comfortable against your skin and should absorb sweat and keep you cool.

Buy Scrubs That Fit Well

Always try the scrubs on for fit before you buy them. They may look to be a good fit on the hanger but you won’t know till you try. You should feel as comfortable in your scrubs as you do in your favorite jeans and t-shirt. Your scrubs shouldn’t be so baggy that movement is difficult, or so tight that they’ll split.

Buy Enough Scrubs To Last A Week

The last thing you want to do when you’re getting ready for your shift is to iron your scrub. When you buy enough scrubs to last you a week, you don’t have to worry about ironing them in the morning and washing them in the night. Buy at least 3 to 4 pairs of scrubs. Use three regularly and keep the fourth as spare, for emergencies.

Buy Fade Resistant Scrubs

Check for the fade resistant label and clarify with the dealer or manufacturer that the scrubs don’t fade easily. It’s awful to pay a good sum of money for a pair of dark colored scrubs that then fades in spots, looking scruffy after a few washes. Nothing looks less professional than scrubby, faded-looking scrubs that look like they’ve seen better days. Even if the retailer says a pair is fade resistant, buy only one pair, check out if they are indeed fade resistant and then go for more.

Buy Stylish Scrubs

This one is just to pander to your vanity, but it never hurts to be stylish. As long as the design fits comfortably, there’s nothing wrong in buying scrubs with different neck cuts, ties on the back or sides, piping and embroidery. Wearing a pair of stylish scrubs will give you an extra boost of confidence as you go about your rounds. As long as your employer is ok with the style aspects, go ahead and buy them and make yourself feel good.

Buy Scrubs At Sales And Save Money

You certainly must focus on better brands to get value for money, but that does not mean hit the retailer and spend all your money on multiple outfits. Most brands hold sales. So unless you need your scrubs urgently, wait for these sales to make the most of your dollar. You can also buy scrubs at incredible deals and discounts from well known brands online. Sometimes online stores offer buy 1 get 1 free deals, which can be very lucrative while buying scrubs.

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Nursing Uniform Policy In Hospitals: Good Or Bad?Is it good or bad to have a nursing uniform policy in hospitals? Ask this question and you’ll find that the jury’s still out on that debate. Some hospitals have decided to implement nursing uniform policies. In some hospitals, all white uniforms are used, while in some, nursing staff wear navy or black scrub pants with a white scrub top with navy trim. Not everyone is comfortable wearing white. Not everyone agrees to a standard nursing uniform policy either. So does that make the nursing uniform policy good or bad?

Case 1: Standard Color Uniform For All Nurses

Ottawa Hospital has decreed that its nurses should not wear scrubs with cartoon characters or other designs on them. Apparently the nurses are very unhappy with this call and the hospital morale is low as a result. The hospital’s HR and management teams jointly came up with this policy which has not found favor among its nurses. The new dress code imposes standard uniform on its nurses to facilitate nurse recognition to patients.

Popular Nursing Opinion Against Standard Uniforms

Nurses in this hospital feel that the changes were made based on hospital image and the patient’s desire to control his or her environment. The hospital insists that nurses also wear white scrub jackets. However, nurses at this hospital feel that many patients suffer from a “white coat syndrome”. This syndrome makes them anxious when surrounded by too many people wearing white coats. Nurses strongly state that they want to dress in “colors and patterns” because it’s fun for both the nurses and their patients.

Popular Nursing Opinion For Standard Uniforms

The majority of nurses from several specialty hospitals feel that wearing a standard uniform denotes proper respect for a patient’s condition. After all, patients come to hospitals, putting their trust and faith into the hands of doctors and nurses. They are not very comforted seeing nurses wearing colorful, patterned and sometimes cartoon-character bedecked uniforms. These uniforms do not impart a sense of seriousness and therefore act detrimental to building the patient’s confidence.

Case 2: Color Coding For Specialties And Departments

Scrubs are the official “uniform” of nurses. However, several healthcare organizations set up rules with regard to standard color codes in scrubs. Color coded standard uniform rule again varies from hospital to hospital. With some hospitals having about half dozen different colors in their color coding system, there’s confusion among nursing staff.

These hospitals believe that color coding works like a visual shorthand. With color coded uniforms, it’s easy to recognize nurses from different specialties. However, nurses are of the opinion that providing several color codes is not helping to ease patient confusion. If patients were confused about the cartoons, designer wear and patterns earlier, they’re even more confused with color-coding. How does a patient remember that a nursing aide wears green while senior nurses are to wear navy blue?

Popular Nursing Opinion For Color Coded Uniforms

Some nurses and doctors feel that color coding can be useful as a tool of communication. It’s good to stand out to prevent confusions between PCAs and nurses. If patients are informed from the get-go that RNs wear navy and blue and so on, they’ll know what to expect and whom to approach.

Some nurses feel that by deciding a color code for specialties and departments, the need to worry about what to wear every day is removed. Now nurses can just wear the color they’ve been assigned and get to work. Taking the guesswork out of choosing daily work attire is an aspect that several nurses actual like about color coded scrub uniforms.

The other reason why this method is liked by nurses is that it’s much less expensive to maintain a limited wardrobe. When nurses are allowed free choice, the pressure of buying great looking scrubs, matching them and ensuring the top and bottom are coordinated is actually stressful at times. Nurses have very challenging jobs and they can do without the stress of trying to look good is what many nurses feel. Again, the competitive level when it comes to dressing is removed when color coding is enforced. Now nurses don’t have to worry about not wearing the same thing twice and trying to look better than the others.

Popular Nursing Opinion Against Color Coded Uniforms

The opinions are diverse; for every nurse who likes wearing a single color, there’ll be two who can’t stand it. Some nurses object to a specific color designated to their department. Some nurses complain that navy blue, a standard color, fades as it washes and looks terrible. Nurses also feel that a switch to strict color coding from a relaxed dress code affects morale negatively.

Hospitals which allow individuals to wear a wide variety of colors don’t understand the point in color coding. They feel that it’s enough if staff shows up for work and does a good job. With nursing professionals in high demand and the supply being so less, many individuals feel that the focus should not be on standardizing uniforms but working on nursing morale and improving working conditions.

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