Is being a CNA a really hard job? - page 2

I am thinking about taking a CNA class to see if I would like being a nurse. I do enjoy helping people including the elderly. But is this job really hard? Do you use lifts to move patients in Nursing... Read More

  1. by   Veronicax
    What do you do when you have to clean or charge the patients bed? I'm sure you will have to lift them then.
  2. by   caliotter3
    Do an internet search for "making an occupied bed". Another skill taught in CNA school. You might be interested in checking out a CNA text from the library or go to a bookstore and page through one. I would not buy one until you actually sign up for the class, as all texts are expensive.
  3. by   caliotter3
    Another idea is to go to a place that utilizes CNA's and ask if you can shadow a CNA for a period of time. And there are many videos showing CNA tasks on YouTube.
  4. by   cleback
    I worked as a CNA from aged 18-23... despite being in good shape (swam, ran, not overweight, no health issues), man, was I sore after every. Single. Shift. Mainly my back.

    Yes, they have lifts but generally not enough for everyone... and even lifts can't do everything. Think about it--who gets patients onto/into the lifts? You. By lifting, pushing, pulling... and generally, what killed me wasn't generally the large patients... who got me were the little ladies that you think would be easy to plop in a wheelchair, but they're confused and you have to really use all your muscles to physically guide them in the chair. Or suddenly their legs give out and after a couple seconds of trying to hold deadweight of 90 lbs alone, you guide them to the floor.

    It's not for the weak. I was always kind of amazed by the ladies who did it in their 40s or 50s. I would be really worried about exacerbating your already bad back. Talk to your doctor or maybe a PT about it.

    Glasses and face shields to protect you from the vomit, diarrhea, and other fluids should technically be available but are generally underutilized.

    If you're thinking about nursing, think long and hard because it can also be physical work. Particularly at the bedside. And thats where most nurses start out. Getting a non bedside position out of nursing school would be difficult.

    If you're still interested in the medical field, you could look into being a medical assistant. They are typically employed in clinics and have less physically demanding duties. Best of luck!
  5. by   Beldar_the_Cenobite
    Compared to nursing(RN/LPN) NO it is not. TRUST ME. I've taken classes that aren't required for CNA that nurses have to take as well as doctors eventually and let me say your workload compared to those higher in pay grade than you is far lesser.

    All you're doing is cleaning and feeding. That's it! CNA's don't remove ****, they don't insert ****, they only clean **** and around **** around anything inserted, but these also all depend on your state I guess as some states allow CNAs to hand medications which to me is scary unless the training is REALLY good and not stressed and hastened.

    Does a CNA tell a patient's family what their illness is? NO, because a CNA isn't trained to know that. An RN/LPN is. CNAs don't call the families, they don't instruct families on what to do. You caudle the patients need, as long as they're not life threatening.

    Taking A&P courses as well as microbiology and maybe some time in pathophysiology to understand the body's reaction to ailments, I WOULD SAY, is what a CNA should learn AS a CNA. There's so much I wish was required before becoming a CNA as it would have really helped during my schooling.

    I REALLY HATE schools that will advertise "we'll get you graduated in less than 3 weeks". When it comes to health promotion and human beings, nothing should be rushed as far as medical education. It should all be a slow pace. This low-class "quantity over quality" BS is NON-SENSE. My school was 6 weeks. My community college where I go for pre-reqs has a CNA training program that is an entire semester.
  6. by   Veronicax
    I thought about Medical Assistant but it's hard to get hired after graduating because everyone wants at least a year of experience.
  7. by   nutella
    Quote from Veronicax
    I am thinking about taking a CNA class to see if I would like being a nurse. I do enjoy helping people including the elderly. But is this job really hard? Do you use lifts to move patients in Nursing homes and hospitals? I do have neck and back pain sometimes due to needing a breasts reduction. So I would be wearing a back and possibly a neck brace while working. Also are you allowed to wear masks and goggles to protect you from germs? I've been told that some patients will try to spit and throw feces on you. Which is why I will definitely want to wear a masks and goggles.
    I have a hard time picturing you with mask, goggle and several braces trying to move patients. The work of CNAs usually includes ambulating, turning, lifting - and often without a device. There is protective gear to wear for precautions. I need to say that while some patients will spit and throw feces, it is not the norm.
    I am not sure why you consider CNA work but consider that it is hard work physically and is not for everybody.
    Perhaps you want to consider some different line of work like getting trained as a pharmacy technician or such.
  8. by   Beldar_the_Cenobite
    Quote from Veronicax
    What do you do when you have to clean or charge the patients bed? I'm sure you will have to lift them then.
    If a patient is overweight beyond your ability to move them and they can't move themselves, you ask for someone. If they tell you to move the patient anyway and that "help" just walks off, quit the job the very next day and let that disrespectful ass attitude the "help" had when you asked for them to work extra harder in finding someone to cover your job. Be aware that leaving your job while on shift I think means abandonment.
  9. by   caliotter3
    Quote from TheAtomicStig_702
    If a patient is overweight beyond your ability to move them and they can't move themselves, you ask for someone. If they tell you to move the patient anyway and that "help" just walks off, quit the job the very next day and let that disrespectful ass attitude the "help" had when you asked for them to work extra harder in finding someone to cover your job. Be aware that leaving your job while on shift I think means abandonment.
    We were instructed to finish the shift. Quit on your way out the door when you have been relieved and clocked out, then you can't be accused of abandonment.
  10. by   Beldar_the_Cenobite
    Quote from FutureNurseInfo
    Don't do it. Spare yourself your health. What if you do become CNA and injure your back? What will you do then? Will you still pursue your nursing career?
    If you're injured on any job, you're required to take a drug test and compensation (comp is lower than your wage usually). That's why there is equipment. If it was me in a situation where the equipment was broken, I would refuse to do anything on my job that severe injury was the repurcussion. Facility don't like it, they'll be hearing from DOL along with lawsuits for failure to provide facility with adequate equipment. In America, we have standards. We like paid leave, we like being compensated when we lose our jobs, but what we all really love is a safe place to work where we can also be the most productive. This isn't North Korea, China, or Iraq. Facilities want that low life kind of work enviornment, they can take it to those haphazard, low-class countries who's governments don't give a ****.
  11. by   Simplistic
    In my opinion, it is a hard job and the pay is horrible. I wouldn't recommend it unless you are in nursing school and trying to get your "foot in the door".
  12. by   Beldar_the_Cenobite
    Quote from Veronicax
    I am thinking about taking a CNA class to see if I would like being a nurse. I do enjoy helping people including the elderly. But is this job really hard? Do you use lifts to move patients in Nursing homes and hospitals? I do have neck and back pain sometimes due to needing a breasts reduction. So I would be wearing a back and possibly a neck brace while working. Also are you allowed to wear masks and goggles to protect you from germs? I've been told that some patients will try to spit and throw feces on you. Which is why I will definitely want to wear a masks and goggles.
    I also think being a CNA makes you a better quality RN once, and if, you become one. CNAs are a sonar to an RN who is the submarine...if that makes sense. Some RNs don't give a rats ass about their CNAs, and some RNs do. Though, we never know what kind of RN they are (ex-CNA or no), a CNA is usually the eyes and ears for the RN (if you didn't get the sonar and submarine approach). I've heard that RNs who were CNAs are better seasoned toward patient care under pressure than those who went straight into nursing school when it comes to treating CNAs.

    I left out this: then again people just have an absent minded lazy attitude when it comes to treating the people around them. People nowadays don't use their brains. They're very "unconscious" as to how they act, meaning they act immaturely in a futile, feeble way. RN's will have their experience of snot-nosed CNAs who don't give a **** and that will season the RN to be the same towards the CNAs who AREN'T snot-nosed CNAs that don't give a ****, and the same goes for CNAs, they'll have a snot-nosed RN who doesn't give a **** and is too lazy because he/she has their degree and can afford a new car with all the bells and whistles and the CNA's will probably have less of a seasoning from that RN because they have to do what that RN tells them.
  13. by   FolksBtrippin
    A CNAs job is usually quite physically demanding. Many nurses have physically demanding jobs too, but many do not.

    Have you considered becoming a mental health tech or aide? This is less physically demanding. You need to be comfortable around people who are different/odd.

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