Doctor's orders

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hhtt21

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Hi, in the sentence "I will comply with the doctor's orders." the phrase "doctor's orders" seems strange to me because, I think, order imply some pressure or sanction. It should be instruction I think. What do you think about it?

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GoesStation

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Hi, in the sentence "I will comply with the doctor's orders." the phrase "doctor's orders" seems strange to me because, I think, order imply some pressure or sanction. It should be instruction I think. What do you think about it?

Thank you.

Doctor's orders is an old and common expression, often used as an excuse. Sorry, I can't help carry your books. Doctor's orders! The person offering the excuse wants to emphasize his or her lack of control -- I can't do this because someone in authority ordered​ me not to.
 
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emsr2d2

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It's true, however, that a doctor cannot order you to do anything. He/she can strongly advise you to do (or not to do) something but whether you choose to comply is entirely up to you.
 

hhtt21

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It's true, however, that a doctor cannot order you to do anything. He/she can strongly advise you to do (or not to do) something but whether you choose to comply is entirely up to you.

This is very explanatory, then it is "doctor's advices". But this is a little different than GoesStation's answer.

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SoothingDave

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"Doctor's orders" is a set phrase. Nothing wrong with it. And "advice" is not countable in this use.
 

Tdol

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If you're refusing a cigarette, then doctor's orders works better than doctor's advice as it removes the idea of choice from the person saying no as they are being forced to do this. You can always ignore advice, but not orders, so using orders tells the person offering the cigarette not to do so again.
 

Tdol

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hhtt21

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If you're refusing a cigarette, then doctor's orders works better than doctor's advice as it removes the idea of choice from the person saying no as they are being forced to do this. You can always ignore advice, but not orders, so using orders tells the person offering the cigarette not to do so again.

Would you explain the part "the person offering the cigarette not to do so"? Isn't it person using the cigarette not to do so?

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emsr2d2

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No. If you refuse a cigarette by saying "No. Doctor's orders!", the implication is that you do not want to be offered another cigarette. You are asking/telling the person offering you the cigarette not to do so again (not to offer you another cigarette). It would actually be very inconsiderate of that person to offer you another one after they've been told that your doctor has told you not to smoke.

If you were offered a cigarette and said "Not right now, thanks", it would be perfectly reasonable for the person to offer you another one at some point in the future.
 

Skrej

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Also, doctors do write actual orders in hospitals, which can consist of ordering (requesting) certain tests or prescribing set care instructions for hospitalized patients that nurses follow. By extension, the term also applies to self-care instructions for outpatients.


Note too, the definition of 'order' is:

"an authoritative command, direction, or instruction."
 

Tdol

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Would you explain the part "the person offering the cigarette not to do so"? Isn't it person using the cigarette not to do so?

The person trying to stop smoking may be tempted to smoke again. If they say that the doctor has ordered them not to smoke, then the person offering the cigarette should really have the courtesy not to make another offer.
 

Tdol

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Also, doctors do write actual orders in hospitals,
When people are sectioned, or when minors are given treatment that their parents may object to on religious grounds, these orders have real legal force. A Jehovah's Witness can refuse a blood transfusion in the UK, but they cannot extend their beliefs to their children- a doctor can over-ride them.
 
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