I just finished my second day at a retirement center. I am a new grad CNA & just got licensed a month ago. I feel like clinicals did NOT prepare me at all, despite this being an AL place. I feel so stupid and inadequate as far as having good and efficient techniques and lifting residents in a safe and good manner. I feel like I need someone to be watching me while I perform work!
Has anyone else felt this way?? What can I do?
Sep 9, '12
My first few days where I work, I felt the exact same way. During my clinicals, I only changed two briefs, neither of which were dirty. My first day on the job, within five minutes of arriving, I was wrist deep in feces.
I've been there four weeks this past Friday and still find myself doing things awkwardly. I have gotten very good and efficient at cleaning residents up after bouts of incontinence. Actually, most of my coworkers will beg me to come help them when they know they need to clean up a resident.
Things will get better. The longer you're there, the more you'll learn about proper body mechanics, and what will and won't hurt you. I had to help pull a 400 pound resident up in the bed tonight, and without a proper lifting technique, I would have hurt my back.
Sep 10, '12
It's kinda hard to know which residents need help standing and which don't. Since it's a retirement center, a lot of them can do things for themselves. I actually have a resident that can stand by herself so I let her do it. But when I was w/ my coworker, she actually lifted the resident to help her stand! Things like that confuse me. Am I supposed to help her stand or is it ok that I let her do it by herself? I've asked her before if she needed help standing & she said no.
Sep 10, '12
Were you not given an orientation? My three week orientation, so far, has been more like a second, hands-on CNA course since the job is so specific regarding how the residents can be lifted, positioned, and cared for (trachs, g-tubes, etc). It's completely normal, I believe, to feel like a fish out of water your first couple of weeks when learning new policy. Each facility is going to have their own ways of doing certain things.
Sep 10, '12
Well today was my 3rd day of training. I have 3 weeks of training. This facility is big so it's kinda hard to figure out every resident. I felt a little more confident today and I really felt like I contributed.
Sep 11, '12
Keep notes on the residents, including who needs ambulation assist, stand by assist. Whether they have bladder or bowel incontinence. Memory loss, confusion. Dietary, fluid restrictions. Most facilities have a sheet or grid with this type of info.
You want the resident to be as independent as possible, so it's good to know if they need help standing up, or want and can do it themselves. My experience with AL is they want to do as much as possible for themselves.
With some residents, asking another aide to show you how they perform certain cares. Like 'show me how you get mrs. Smith into the shower'. Personally, I like to keep things the way resident likes it and not have them complain about the new guy.
Somebody on this site said they always ask the aides ' what is the most important thing to know about this resident'.
Good luck and congratulations on your new job!
Sep 12, '12
Well if you have a 3 week orientation and you are only in your third day, I wouldnt sweat it. Three weeks is a lot longer than most orientations. Some places its a few shifts and they throw you to the wolves. Im surprised with such an extensive orientation they didnt have PT give you tips. We had to have a class with PT where they basically tested us on our transfers and worked with us if we needed it. You couldnt transfer a resident until PT signed off on you. But this was a skilled nursing facility.
As far as whether to assist a resident in transferring. As a general rule, if they can do it themselves unaided, let them do it themselves so long as its not obviously unsafe. Maybe throw a gait belt on them and have a hold on it in case they do get shakey or go down, but if you dont need to lift them, then dont. Its good exercise for em. Maybe help pull up on the gait belt a little when they first start if they got creaky knees.
The other aide might have just helped lift her because thery were in a hurry and didnt feel like waiting for them to do it themselves.
Also, If you see a PT working with residents, they are the best sources of info. So maybe ask them for some tips if they dont look too busy.
Last edit by funtimes on Sep 12, '12
: Reason: more info
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