Is being a CNA a really hard job?

  1. 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.
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  2. 73 Comments

  3. by   Sour Lemon
    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.
    Yes, it is physically hard. If you already need back and neck braces, it's probably not the ideal job for you. Nursing is not much better, either. Nurses do everything CNAs do ...some units don't even have CNAs.
  4. by   roser13
    Yes, being a CNA is hard physical work.
  5. by   Purple_roses
    Being a CNA is a hard job! You do quit a bit of hard and often gross work for way too little pay. I did it for three years before I became a nurse. It helped me with people skills and for some, it helps them get their foot in the door at their choice hospital. I also have friends who didn't work as CNAs through nursing school and they're doing just fine in their nursing careers. Either path can work out in the long run. I say you give it a go! (Depending on your back and neck issues. It will be tough on your body).

    You *can* wear a mask and goggles at all times, but you probably shouldn't. You'll learn the appropriate times for wearing personal protective equipment though.
  6. by   Veronicax
    How do you get the patients up and out of bed? Do you use lifts? This is something I was told but is this only for certain patients?
  7. by   caliotter3
    Only certain patients use lifts. The majority you transfer to the wheelchair, perhaps with the help of your partner CNA.
  8. by   Sour Lemon
    Quote from Veronicax
    How do you get the patients up and out of bed? Do you use lifts? This is something I was told but is this only for certain patients?
    There are usually devices around to help lift. Sometimes they're broken ...sometimes they're on other floors, etc. What usually happens is that there are not enough hours in the day to use them.
  9. by   Veronicax
    So sometimes you have to lift the patient by yourself with no assistance?
  10. by   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?
  11. by   Sour Lemon
    Quote from Veronicax
    So sometimes you have to lift the patient by yourself with no assistance?
    You will be taught that you do not have to ...and you shouldn't have to ...but in the real world, assistance can be difficult to come by. And even when you do have assistance, it can still be hard work. One patient can put several nurses/CNAs on medical leave.
  12. by   caliotter3
    You don't lift a patient by yourself unless they really are small enough for you to handle. You assist the patient to get into a sitting position at the edge of the bed, then to stand, and you help them to pivot into the chair. You will learn this in CNA school.
  13. by   Veronicax
    I know I am worried about getting injured but I thought there was something I could do to prevent that.
  14. by   caliotter3
    If you can not perform the transfer, then don't do it. Tell your supervisor that you can't do it by yourself and that you need assistance. If it means that you lose the job, then so be it. Nobody can force you to injure yourself.

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