No matter what type of nursing you do, gloves are a common and important part of your life. There are many different brands of gloves, but really what you are looking for is how well the gloves allow you to function.
Manufacturers don’t matter as much as glove fit, materials, and construction. These factors should not be taken lightly, as they can directly impact your ability to effectively care for your patients.
Gloves protect you, too. You need gloves that meet these criteria to keep from exposing yourself to bacteria and viruses that may transmit themselves to or from the patients.
Fortunately, most facilities have adopted a completely latex free environment. This is because so many patients have severe allergic reactions to the substance that it is harmful for them to come in contact with it.
Another problem is that latex gloves, when worn often by healthcare providers, can lead to a future latex allergy. This means that several sets of gloves are needed to accommodate for the health needs of various workers.
Some older facilities may still have latex gloves, and it is important to find out what your workplace uses. If they are still using latex, you may want to talk to your supervisor about switching to a latex free environment.
Powdered gloves are another type that has been phased out over the years. The great feature of powdered gloves was that it was easy to put them on.
The powder would absorb hand sweat, making it easy to move from one patient to another, changing gloves with moist hands. Some gloves without powder take a good deal of wrestling to settle on your hand.
Unfortunately, powder has its downsides. It can cake on your fingers, get into a patient’s wound, or can be inhaled by the nurse or the patient. Despite the perks, powdered gloves are only found in older facilities and rarely in some packages of sterile gloves.
Finding the correct size of glove may be more challenging than you think. If the glove is too big, you will not have the dexterity to perform fine skills, such as inserting an IV.
Large gloves will also be floppy and generally difficult to use. However, smaller gloves have the very real possibility of breakage.
This can open you up to infection or infecting the patient. It’s hard to achieve a balance between the two.
On one hand, you want gloves big enough to not break, and you also want ones that are essentially like a second skin.
Try them out. Get some different types and sizes of gloves together, wash your hands, dry them as much as possible. Test how difficult it is to get your hand into the glove, how tight the glove is, and if you can pick up small objects.
With testing, you can determine which size of glove is right for you, and this will help you in caring for both the patient and yourself.