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Stretched ears in the EMS profession

Discussion in 'EMS Talk' started by Pittsburgh77, Dec 16, 2009.

  1. Pittsburgh77

    Pittsburgh77 New Member

    Location:
    Pittsburgh,PA
    First; I would like to clearly state that I do NOT have my ears pierced OR stretched nor do I have any visible piercings.

    I'm looking for some input from other EMS professionals about getting my ears pierced and stretched. I currently work as an EMT-B in PA, and I am also a volunteer firefighter. I'm moderatly tattooed [none visible in uniform] and slowly getting into piercing [only have my tongue now, and will be getting my nipples pierced as of tomorrow or Thursday afternoon]

    So, with that said; I am thinking about stretching my ears to about 1/2". Does anyone here forsee any problems I will encounter with these as a paramedic student [as of January 11th]

    For those who don't know what "stretched ears" here are a few examples:
    [​IMG]

    -This is aprox. the size I would like to get my ears to.
    http://pic70.picturetrail.com/VOL1865/8510734/18044016/379661846.jpg

    [​IMG]
    -These ears are 1", not exactly what I want. I only added this picture for a good example of what stretched ears are
    http://pic70.picturetrail.com/VOL1865/8510734/18044016/379661883.jpg

    (Added direct picture links, if for some reason the pictures didn't show up on here)

    So please give me some constructive feedback and personal opinions. Thanks, Adam.
  2. Smash

    Smash Member

    Location:
    Purgatory
    Unfortunately yes, I do forsee problems with getting your ears stretched. Some people may object to such adornments, and unfortunately these people may or may not be your future employers. I don't personally have a problem with these, but be aware that they may not be the image that a company wants to present to it's customers.

    Personally I would wait until such time as you have sought and obtained employment, before reassessing whether it is something you want to get done. Like it or not, right or wrong, it may have a negative effect on you gaining employment in EMS.
  3. Pittsburgh77

    Pittsburgh77 New Member

    Location:
    Pittsburgh,PA
    Hmm, yeah thanks for the speedy response!

    At my current company they do have a facial piercing policy in place excluding tongue rings, but we are allowed to have visible tattoos at the owners discretion. However, I'll be leaving this company at the end of this fall semester once I move back home to start paramedic class.

    I will keep your opinion in mind for my future decsions.
  4. DrParasite

    DrParasite Ambulance Driver

    I wouldn't. like it or not, having a paramedic (or potential hire) showing up to an interview with 1/2 inch holes in their ears would def be a negative mark in my book.

    nothing wrong with nipples, nothing wrong with tongue as long as you can talk normally, and nothing wrong with anything hidable.

    heck, if you want to poke a hole in anything, go for it, even if it's eyebrow, lips, nose, and scrotum. however, all these things can be removed and hidden, or at least their appearance can be minimize.

    a stretched ear that I can hang a caribeener though? not so.
  5. JPINFV

    JPINFV Gadfly

    Location:
    404: No Meme Found
    It comes down to a professional appearance issue. Putting holes in your ears does not present a professional image and is something that most companies are going to consider greatly when considering who to hire. Direct customer service positions (such as any medical field that directly interacts with patients) is conservative in nature.
  6. Tyler Bruns

    Tyler Bruns New Member

    Location:
    Ventura, CA
    EMS Training:
    EMT-Basic
    I am surprised that you are even allowed to have plugged ears. A kid in my classes was dropped because he had them and chose keeping them over getting them surgically repaired.
  7. mcdonl

    mcdonl New Member

    Location:
    Southern Maine
    I have no piercings, but I have a considerable amount of tattoo's.... But, they are all on my arms, and none go to my wrist. When I am go to my day job, or an EMS job I wear long sleeve shirts because I know it makes some people uncomfortable.

    I do not think that ones desires for self expression should interfere with a patients need to be comfortable. Because of this, I think that if you get into this field you need to make sacrifices and this would be one of them.

    In my opinion.
  8. mcdonl

    mcdonl New Member

    Location:
    Southern Maine
    I live in Maine, I do not even know what this means. What are plugged ears? I know my kids seem to have them from time to time as they never listen....
  9. Tincanfireman

    Tincanfireman Airfield Operations

    Location:
    Southeastern US
    EMS Training:
    EMT-Intermediate
    Your profile picture(s) are fire-related; how is gauging your ears going to affect that? I can assure you that the day you showed up in my station (volunteer or career) with rings in your ears would be your last. Nothing personal, but I don't know any departments that would allow it due to the additional risk of getting snagged on something. In most FD's I've worked in, males wearing earrings are discouraged from doing so, and females only wear the posts with small adornments. It may well come down to a choice betweeen your choice of personal expression and a paycheck.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 16, 2009
  10. Aidey

    Aidey Forum Deputy Chiefette Community Leader

    Location:
    USA
    There is an RN at one of the hospitals where I am that has his ears stretched.
  11. Piper76

    Piper76 New Member

    Location:
    Birmingham, AL
    EMS Training:
    EMT-Paramedic
    I have several tattoos (not visible unless in shorts or shirtless) and my ears are pierced normally. Although my boss, or anyone in my office, does not care at about me wearing them, I choose not to because I want to represent the company in the best way possible. I will not be wearing them in class either, as I don't feel they are appropriate in a learning environment.

    I just think there is a time and place for everything, and in today's job climate why chance it.
  12. mcdonl

    mcdonl New Member

    Location:
    Southern Maine
    Piper, I like the pic... I am the Highland Games athletics director for the large games in my State.

    Ok.. sorry... carry on...
  13. Piper76

    Piper76 New Member

    Location:
    Birmingham, AL
    EMS Training:
    EMT-Paramedic
    Cheers! Piping has become a HUGE part of my life in the short time I have done it. I play in 2 bands and am looking to join a 3rd, as well as solo comps, EMT class, etc, etc...

    Super, super, busy, but loving it!
  14. VentMedic

    VentMedic New Member

    Not only are they visually unprofessional in appearance, they can also present a safety issue just like hoop earrings. The tearing of the earlobe is bad enough when just a child grabs a hoop earring on a pierced ear. I can not imagine what would happen if a confused adult grabbed the ear lobe of an EMT sporting these things. But, your insurance might then pay for the repair and hopefully the earlobe is put back to something more normal and less hazardous.
  15. bunkie

    bunkie New Member

    As vent and tincan stated, I'd be concerned about the safety issue. I have two holes in each ear and personally wouldn't ever wear earrings on the job. I did put off a sleeve I had scheduled because of this very worry. So I say, when in doubt, dont.
  16. Sasha

    Sasha New Member

    I would NOT do this. This is not the social norm and not something you could take out and pretend you don't have or hide under clothing. This may make it very hard for you to get a job, there is also the safety issue AND the fact that when the fad passes and you're tired of a gigantic hole in your ear, you will have to get them surgically corrected.
  17. VentMedic

    VentMedic New Member

    It would be interesting to know how many hospitals he applied at before getting that job or what opportunities he'll have to pass up in the future because of his ears. ORs and ICUs, especially surgical or specialty, are very strict about jewelry and professional appearances as are transport teams who are representatives of their hospital.
  18. imurphy

    imurphy New Member

    Location:
    Manchester, NH
    EMS Training:
    EMT-Paramedic
    I think the general rule of thumb when it comes to personal expression where it relates to a profession is if you have to question it, it probably isn't going to fly.

    I know my service does not allow visable tattoos, and mandates wearing long sleeves if they are visable both summer and winter.

    If you are going to an interview, I'm sure that your streached ears would be looked down upon. It is all down to perception. For instance when you look at the news etc, you regularly see people who have committed crimes to have such addornments on the tv. Think if your patients, who may be elderly and relate these modifications to criminality see you coming in they will automatically be afraid of you.

    Before anyone says anything, I am not saying everyone that has hese modifications are engaged in criminal activity; I have a number of very good friends who have them and they are the nicest people, however society is judgemental.
  19. dudes with one inch holes through their earlobes isn't attractive?
  20. daedalus

    daedalus New Member

    Location:
    Ventura, CA
    Actually... they are. (;

    As far as getting a job as an EMT or Paramedic, or as another health care professional in the hospital, you are shooting yourself in the foot. I have seen one EMT in Los Angeles with a gauged ear but he worked for a transfer company, probably the only one that would hire him. And unlike LA, the OP doubtfully has over 90 ambulance companies to apply to like in the greater LA area.

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