Take Care of Yourself! « Allied Health World Blog

Take Care of Yourself!

Years ago I worked with a heart surgeon who always looked very unkempt. For example, he would wear a shirt with a pocket that was torn, and would be held together with a safety pin. Whenever I would see him, my instincts would kick in and make me want to run down the hall to ask him to take off his shirt so I could mend it for him really quick like. Of course I never did....and neither did he or anyone else, because the pocket of that ripped shirt remained torn for the rest of the time I worked there. I don't know if he wore the same shirt all the time or if all his shirts were torn. Regardless, I heard he was a good surgeon, but nonetheless, I remember thinking that I wouldn't want him to operate on me because he might try to safety pin my heart together rather then fixing it properly.

Likewise, when I had abdominal surgery years ago, there was a nurse who would occasionally come in and check my dressing and incisions. She smelled like cigarettes and often had stains on her clothing or looked tired and overdue for a shower. I don't mind disheveled friends, but for some reason, I didn't feel comfortable with her touching my wounds. Obviously, appearance does matter. Look good and your patients will trust you and feel more comfortable in your care even before they get to know you. How can a patient trust someone to care for them when they don't take the time to care for themselves.