HELP! I DON"T WANT TO GO THROUGH CNA first... - page 15

This is really not to put any profession down but I've dreamed of being a nurse for soooo long, now only to discover that before entering my LVN program, I have to get the CNA title first! I am... Read More

  1. by   porcelina22
    Good Grief! Talk about a popular thread!!!

    I am also a nursing student, and I graduate in May. I plan on going straight to ICU or ER on graduation. I have been a nurse extern in both places. When I started school, I had this wonderful vision of myself saving lives all day, every day. Come to find out that day-to-day life is much more mundane.

    To sympathize with the OP, I never wanted to change diapers either. In my CNA course I tried to avoid it at all costs. That made me a bad CNA student, I know. Now, after working with patients nearly full time for 9 months, I realize that it is a necessary evil and that my job as an RN is to ensure patient safety and facilitate healing. Part of that is keeping patients clean and comfortable, which means changing a diaper or two.

    In ICU it is primary nursing- that means that for the most part I will have no Aide, but will be responsible for everything involved in my patient's care...and I'll be dealing with a lot more grossness (puke, poop, mucus, phlegm, blood, more poop, pus, snot, more poop...) than I want. But you know what? I am more excited about that level of care than I ever thought I would be. I know I will be making a difference.

    No one likes poop. (Except for, maybe, some foreign porn stars...) But no matter where you go, there will be poop.

    Someone mentioned another RN student going into psych and not having to deal with poop...ummm...you are sorely misguided if you think there will be no poop. I've had two poop flinging psych incidents in two days of psych clinicals. Much more challenging to clean up than poop in a diapey!!!

    No matter where you go, no matter the level of care, there will be diapers to change and at some point there will be no aide to help you out. You don't have to like it. Avoiding the CNA class to avoid that icky aspect of nursing won't help you out. At leat if you go through the class, you'll know how to react, and you'll know how to get the job done quickly. It'll be alright...CNA classes are usually only a month or two long anyway.

    Good luck to you!!!

    ...chrissy...
  2. by   dansdoll
    Dear looking forward,

    I started my nursing career as a CNA and I resent your implication that CNA work is gross. CNA's are essential to nursing and provide some of the most important care needs for pts. I am now an NP (resently upgraded from RN) and continue to value these care providers. I would recommend you look up the scope of practice for LPN and recognize that as an LPN you will be providing many of the care practices you seem to feel are beneth you. If you truly are "grossed out" by providing compassionate care, maybe you should look into and MA instead as MA are more office oriented and maybe this side of care will not gross you out so much.
  3. by   brace92
    I am currently enrolled in a Practical Nurse program in New York, and you would be crazy to not have your CNA first. You will be doing a lions share of cna work during your clinicals. I took my CNA 15 years ago and the class helped my alot. I never used my CNA but now I wish I had the experience would have been valuable. I just made the statement the other day in clinical that a person should have to have a CNA to take the course I am taking and to have used it for at least six months. I have several CNA's in my class now and they are leaps and bounds ahead of me at clinical they can make it through a bed bath and occupied bed in 1/4 of the time it takes me. RN's and LPN'S LVN's clean poo all the time I see it happen. If you dont want to deal with the poo then don't go into nursing.
  4. by   lookingforward
    [quote=dansdoll;2062139]dear looking forward,

    ...i would recommend you look up the scope of practice for lpn and recognize that as an lpn you will be providing many of the care practices you seem to feel are beneth you....

    i don't recall ever stating that any task was beneath me!
    ?????????????????????????????????????????????????? ?
  5. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Quote from lookingforward

    i don't recall ever stating that any task was beneath me!
    ?????????????????????????????????????????????????? ?
    i think people are still reading your first post and getting that impression form it.
  6. by   lookingforward
    ...should have posted in peds forum:roll:roll:roll:roll:roll:roll:roll:roll:roll
    the question's not so taboo there!
  7. by   DeLana_RN
    I think if I hadn't worked as a CNA for 6 months (I was so proud when I got my certificate) I would have never made it through my BSN program - which didn't require this, BTW - because our clinical experiences left much to be desired. It has also helped tremendously in my various jobs as an RN, specifically with body mechanics.

    If you're so horrified by some of the basic nursing tasks (my husband, an RN in a cardiac ICU, changes diapers daily), you probably should get some basic care experience to help you decide if nursing is really for you.

    Good luck to you!

    DeLana
  8. by   DeLana_RN
    Quote from serousanguineous
    Actually ... when I started school I was scared to death of seeing naked people- I was so nervous that I would look up "bed baths" in my fundamentals book almost every time I had clinical -just to make sure I could do it "professionally" and QUICKLY :imbar
    LOL, I though I was the only one who did something like this in my first semester - I even had a card in my pocket on which I had all the steps of a "proper bed bath" copied from my foundations text - that's probably why it took me about 4 hours to do a bed bath :chuckle

    BTW, that's another thing that working as a CNA helped me with - you can't take that long when you have to care for 10-12* residents (day shift) or 15-20* (evening shift).

    DeLana

    *12 or 20 were in case of a call in; in those days (1996) I did all of this for $6/hour!
  9. by   chadash
    Quote from DeLana_RN
    LOL, I though I was the only one who did something like this in my first semester - I even had a card in my pocket on which I had all the steps of a "proper bed bath" copied from my foundations text - that's probably why it took me about 4 hours to do a bed bath :chuckle

    BTW, that's another thing that working as a CNA helped me with - you can't take that long when you have to care for 10-12* residents (day shift) or 15-20* (evening shift).

    DeLana

    *12 or 20 were in case of a call in; in those days (1996) I did all of this for $6/hour!
    Good point, DeLana. It sure is a boot camp for reality. I remember taking a CNA class with some girls that had never done patient care, and when we went to the nursing home for clinicals, I remember one very prim student taking an inordinate amount of time with each task, task she selected rather that ones really required on the job, yet she was reluctant to help wipe an elderly man that I lifted out of a chair for a diaper change. Little did she know that that would be 90 % of the job. All that said, "if you can make it there, you'll make it anywhere...." I am naturally slow and a bit of a whimp, but sure like a challenge.
    This to the poster: see it as an opportunity to push out of your comfort zone. I never have regretted doing something I did not like at least long enough to get over my angst or whatever....
  10. by   lamielpn
    With that attitude you will never make it. Go thru the CNA first. This will let you know if nursing is right for you. You will experiance every thing as a cna, that a nurse experiences on a daily basis. Most states require this now anyway.Just do it.
  11. by   dorselm
    You know what? I can't keep shut anymore! Shame on all of the so called caring compassionate people who have responded with such negativity. It's sad that a person can't come here with a concern and be understood rather than ganged up on and treated rude! Like I responded earlier, I know just what she is going through!!! I did not want to be a CNA and still don't and guess what....I'M A CNA at an LTC facility. I took the job so that I could know that aspect of nursing and so that it would help in NS. I hate it! I love working with some of the patients. I come to work just to see them. When I have a few minutes of downtime, I spend it with the patients. If they want to tell me "how their day at work went yesterday" then I listen and go along with it. But when I have 6 people who have physical therapy and I have to get them fed, bathed, dressed and ready at the same time and they all have to go to the bathroom and some don't want to get up and they're cursing at you and then their families are coming in demanding this that and the other, it can be pretty darn stressful!!! Or I may have some patients who are 300 lbs and want to be put in bed. They can't walk or stand so you have to find someone to help you get them in bed. Which means you have to put on the patient's shoes, take off the legs on the wheelchair, position it and have the other person help you lift this person in bed and then take off their shoes. Then an hour later, they want to get out of bed so again you have to find someone to help you get them out of bed. To get them out of bed, you have to put on their shoes, position their wheelchair, take off the legs, have someone help you put the patient in the chair and then put the legs back on. Being a CNA is hard work! I am used to seeing genitals and I am used to cleaning poop and wiping butts. The nurses where I work DO NOT CHANGE BRIEFS! They get us to do it. They are very busy don't get me wrong and we all work as a team but I have NEVER ever, seen a nurse answer a call light. We answer and if the patient wants the nurse we go get them.I'm not saying that you will never change briefs when you are a nurse but unless you work in ICU, there won't be very many times when you will. That's what CNA's are for. None of these people on this post know me or lookingforward to be able to say we are not caring compassionate people just because we don't want to be CNA's. I am a very loving person which is why I chose the nursing field. My family and my former co-workers in the corporate world always told me that nursing is what I should be pursuing.

    To lookingforward I say this... it is very normal to feel apprehensive about the CNA part of nursing but I believe that once you get into it and do it, you will be able to get through it and find that its not as bad as you thought it would be. It's just going to take a little time. It's hard for me because I am slow right now because I like to give my patients good care as opposed to just wiping them down and putting their clothes on. Unfortunately I pay for this by missing my 15 min breaks and sometimes missing my lunch breaks. Pray for God to give you the strength to get through it and He will and in the meantime, if you go to the CNA forum and click on the sticky Free Full CNA Video Course, this will help you out alot. God Bless!
  12. by   joyflnoyz
    i will have to do cna no matter what, it is part of my schooling and since there's no way to go around it, i will take each day as a learning experience.


    lookingforward, i think this is the problem we are seeing with your original post : is it not "cna work"; what cnas do is *basic nursing care*.

    nurses did it long before there were cnas

    you don't want to work geriatrics? that's great! don't stick me in icu lol . don't give me pediatrics: i've got 4 kids of my own to care for. i see end of life care as a priviledge<ultimate goal is to work hospice >that's one of the pros of nursing: so many options where to work and what to do. working geriatrics gets me some hospice/palliative care experience that i can't get elsewhere.

    do you have to work as a cna to be a better nurse? absolutely not.
    can it make life easier? i believe so: you will have a comfort level in dealing with people who need an extraordinary amount of help in a health care setting, who are in various stages of undress, need an advocate etc. that comfort level will give you a "leg up" during your clinicals
    Last edit by joyflnoyz on Feb 11, '07
  13. by   lookingforward
    once again dorselm, thank you!:angel2:
    i wish you the best of luck in your career and i'm sorry that you miss your breaks and lunch. it all goes to show that you are truly dedicated to your patients, even though it is not always peachy! ( if you know what i mean)
    like i've mentioned before my time and financial resources are very scarce at the moment and i just wanted to enter the nursing profession and make significant contributions. if that means learning to "get out of my comfort zone" then so be it. what doesn't kill my only makes me stronger right? i do comprehend that it will make me a little more experienced as far as bedside care is concerned. i just know that not every nurse does this every day all day long... that is why they invented the cna position right? i think so. i'm even starting to doubt my interest in lvn, since hearing all this lack of respect and all... i'll keep you updated though. to top it all off the lvn school closest to my home is $32,000 but almost everyone has been telling me i'm crazy if i want to pay that much just for lvn, when the "adult" school in the next city is only $7,000!!!! i just fear that chances are so slim for an lvn to get hired in a hospital nowadays and the expensive school is through the hospital so it's like my "security blanket" of sorts...well now that i've vented i've got alot of decisions to make... thanks again!

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