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    As it says in the title, I was wondering whether, as medical students/doctors, you drink a lot of alcohol/smoke (either regularly or just occasionally on nights out etc.)/eat unhealthily/use illegal drugs/tan purposely when we are all well aware of the dangers and risks?

    I'm not judging or condemning any of these behaviours, and I'm certainly not saying that medics should be living the model healthy lives that we recommend to patients, and I know from personal experience that many of us engage in less than healthy behaviours, but I was just looking for some personal opinions and experiences, as I'm thinking of maybe writing a blog post on something along these lines. (Wow that was a very long sentence...).

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    I'm sure most medical students have done some, if not all, of those things at some point over the years - they're pretty standard things for any teen/young adult to experiment with, especially at university.

    My score: 4/5 - I'll leave it to you to figure out which one of those definitely isn't on my list of vices

    Btw, if you're going to quote anyone from here on your blog, make sure you ask them first.
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    (Original post by Democracy)
    I'm sure most medical students have done some, if not all, of those things at some point over the years - they're pretty standard things for any teen/young adult to experiment with, especially at university.

    My score: 4/5 - I'll leave it to you to figure out which one of those definitely isn't on my list of vices

    Btw, if you're going to quote anyone from here on your blog, make sure you ask them first.
    Thanks for answering I totally agree with you that most people will have done most/many of those things, I was just wondering if people's perceptions changed once they started Medicine/met patients who were suffering the long term or short term consequences of them.

    And yes, of course, I wasn't planning on directly quoting, just giving a vague overview of people's thoughts, but if I do end up wanting a quote, I'll be sure to ask
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    I've never done at least two of those things, and I wouldn't say my opinion on them had changed any since starting medicine.

    If anything, having seen many patients who are somehow alive and well on a bottle of vodka a day, I feel distinctly less bad about my drinking habits.
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    Never done 2, only accidentally done 1, don't do 1 much any more, which leaves me with one which is still problematic.
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    I drink yes and I can put away a fair amount of alcohol when in the mood to do so. Haven't drank for the past 5 weeks because of other commitments but I know myself that I will be back to a state of regularly consuming 20 or so units per week over summer. My drinking can swing between the social and unsocial variety. I'd like to think I could drink less If I wanted to and I think the last few weeks have shown that I can cut it out completely with little to no side effects or cravings.

    I've smoked previously (probably no more than 50 in my entire lifetime) but never touch it nowadays and haven't done for quite some time. I doubt I'll ever touch another cigarette.

    I eat a healthy well balanced diet and have done so for the last 5 or so years. Food is one of the areas I won't cut back on due to cost or difficulty in preparation.

    I have smoked cannabis once or twice a good few years ago now. Never taken anything stronger and while I'd never say never (because I'm pragmatic like that), there is very little chance I ever will.

    I have a very low opinion of males who purposefully decide to tan and for that reason wouldn't do it. I think it's a vain and (pathologically) damaging thing to do. On the other hand, it looks good on women so I've got an admittedly sexist outlook on the entire thing...

    Please no direct quotes.
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    None really. The excessive drinking maybe applies a few times throughout the year but usually as a cause of celebration. Eating habits vary, I try and eat healthy when I can but I'll get takeout maybe once a week to satisfy my urges. So I guess I'm a pretty clean living guy, but I know loads of medics who still smoke (many of them part time, usually during stressful periods) and binge drink at least once/twice a week.
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    (Original post by Caponester)
    I drink yes and I can put away a fair amount of alcohol when in the mood to do so. Haven't drank for the past 5 weeks because of other commitments but I know myself that I will be back to a state of regularly consuming 20 or so units per week over summer. My drinking can swing between the social and unsocial variety. I'd like to think I could drink less If I wanted to and I think the last few weeks have shown that I can cut it out completely with little to no side effects or cravings.

    I've smoked previously (probably no more than 50 in my entire lifetime) but never touch it nowadays and haven't done for quite some time. I doubt I'll ever touch another cigarette.

    I eat a healthy well balanced diet and have done so for the last 5 or so years. Food is one of the areas I won't cut back on due to cost or difficulty in preparation.

    I have smoked cannabis once or twice a good few years ago now. Never taken anything stronger and while I'd never say never (because I'm pragmatic like that), there is very little chance I ever will.

    I have a very low opinion of males who purposefully decide to tan and for that reason wouldn't do it. I think it's a vain and (pathologically) damaging thing to do. On the other hand, it looks good on women so I've got an admittedly sexist outlook on the entire thing...

    Please no direct quotes.
    Thanks very much for your answer, I won't directly quote anything, it's just good to have a general idea of a variety of opinions.



    None really. The excessive drinking maybe applies a few times throughout the year but usually as a cause of celebration. Eating habits vary, I try and eat healthy when I can but I'll get takeout maybe once a week to satisfy my urges. So I guess I'm a pretty clean living guy, but I know loads of medics who still smoke (many of them part time, usually during stressful periods) and binge drink at least once/twice a week.
    Thanks, agreed with you on the smoking one - I feel like I see considerably more smokers smoking outside my med school around exam time!


    Becca-Sarah and Helenia, thank you also for your posts...I do 1 often, 1 sometimes, 2 never and 1 I am very self-righteous and annoying about, always telling people to stop etc...you'd be surprised which way around it is!

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    Eat unhealthily often, binge drink sometimes, never smoked or done illegal drugs, and am ridiculously and unjustifiable anti-tanning hehe
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    (Original post by ConfusedMedic)

    Becca-Sarah and Helenia, thank you also for your posts...I do 1 often, 1 sometimes, 2 never and 1 I am very self-righteous and annoying about, always telling people to stop etc...you'd be surprised which way around it is!

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    Eat unhealthily often, binge drink sometimes, never smoked or done illegal drugs, and am ridiculously and unjustifiable anti-tanning hehe
    I should probably be less opaque...

    I've never smoked or done illegal drugs. I never deliberately sunbathe or use sunbeds but have got burnt in the past which is bad for someone with skin as pale as mine. I used to drink a lot more in med school than I do now - I very rarely exceed the weekly recommended limit these days, but I suppose I do technically "binge drink" according to the government (where anything more than one large glass of wine counts as a binge). I am pretty bad at healthy eating though and my weight has fluctuated by over 20kg in the last 4 years. That's my major weakness. I make healthy meals at home, but a)eat too much of them and b)buy crappy snacks far too much.
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    I don't do and won't ever do illegal drugs more because I'm anti them, rather than worried about censure from the GMC/Police.

    You probably would struggle to get a true view on that particular topic for those reasons though unless it was an anonymous survey or something.

    My weakness from your list incidentally is food nomnomnomnom
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    i'm clean
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    Never smoked or used illicit drugs, don't tan/sunbathe really, but have on occasion drank excessively and my diet could certainly be healthier.

    No quotes from me either ta.
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    I love a good tanning session me
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    (Original post by ConfusedMedic)
    As it says in the title, I was wondering whether, as medical students/doctors, you drink a lot of alcohol/smoke (either regularly or just occasionally on nights out etc.)/eat unhealthily/use illegal drugs/tan purposely when we are all well aware of the dangers and risks?

    I'm not judging or condemning any of these behaviours, and I'm certainly not saying that medics should be living the model healthy lives that we recommend to patients, and I know from personal experience that many of us engage in less than healthy behaviours, but I was just looking for some personal opinions and experiences, as I'm thinking of maybe writing a blog post on something along these lines. (Wow that was a very long sentence...).

    ok, I'm an oldie and have done 5/5 in the past. Tanning as a result of playing golf - always wear spf15 minimum (fair skin) but have burned despite that. Nowadays, use P20 on the course and never burn. Drinking never to excess of recommended weekly amount. Unhealthy eating - sometimes but no weight issues. Illegal drugs - way in the past but never now. My one true vice and still a problem is smoking. Stop every year for varying amounts of weeks/months - major problem is I start again when stressed. Currently, a smoker but next attempt to stop will be after my exams.

    As previously mentioned, no direct quotes please.
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    Well as the poster above me .. my main problem is smoking, been trying to quit but when exams come I'm on 15 a day and can't help it .... as for drugs, hmm, that's in the past for me, was never a big user, would consider doing some as a one off .... however, one drug, I'd NEVER do again, is alcohol ... stay away from that stuff, don't like it whatsoever, don't understand how people can drink so much, I just can't handle it rly
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    Don't do any of that stuff, but that is nothing to do with health reasons really - they just don't appeal (any more in some cases). Next to none of my friends smoke, although i'm not sure if that's an incidence compatible with an equivalent age/socioeconoic group. I don't consider my experience of recreational drugs to hav been dangerous in the slightest.

    Doctors as a whole have a very high rate of drug and alcohol dependency though, of course.
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    Drugs - no, again not due to gmc/police. But because I know they can harm people and can be a bit more of a unknown than alcohol (although alcohol itself can be unpredictable) .

    smoking - not now. I think it's horrible and unattractive and smelly. Sorry to anyone on here who smokes! I have tried it but when I was much younger.

    Drinking - aye. Not as much as I did at the start of uni, as I can't take the hangovers anymore and I would rather achieve something with my days. I have now got a kind of middle aged drinking pattern - a few glasses of wine during the week and maybe a bit more on a Saturday. Will drink more on special occasions. Definitely drank more at years 1-3.

    Tanning - I presume you mean sunbed. Nope. I use fake tan as I've gotten quite good at doing it and only for a special occasion. I'm fair skinned so the risk isn't worth it.

    Eating - I am quite conscious with this and I do eat healthy most of the time and do lots of running and gymming. Can slip at exam time but I've been a healthy weight all of my life.


    No direct quotes please but this has been an interesting thread!
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    4/5

    I guess the biggest change is my attitude towards drugs, after studying them at medical school it really (a) made me realise how exaggerated the risks are in school as long as you are responsible and (b) made me want to try them.

    Edit- originally said yes to all 5, but as the tanning was prescribed by dermatologist I figured that wasn't what you meant.
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    I don't drink and have been teetotal since before medical school. I have never tried a cigarette or any illegal drugs. I don't tan but get burnt maybe once every couple of years. Unfortunately my diet is rubbish but I am working on it!


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    I don't smoke, drink, tan, use illegal drugs and eat a pretty balanced diet but I would do that anyway, being a medic hasn't really contributed towards it.
 
 
 
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