1st ADL in clinicals. Not at all prepared

  1. After being in my LPN school for 5 weeks, we had our second day of clinicals. Today was ADL's. My first ADL was a client that was in contracture, had dementia, on a G-tube, L hemiplegia, Parkinson's and a garden variety of other diagnosis. It took us from 830-1030 to give this sweet woman a bed bath. I do not believe that I was at all prepared to do this. When they teach us bed bath, (a 5 minute lesson) they do not tell you what to do if the patient cannot bend their knees, open their legs etc. There were 2 of us there but neither one of us was a CNA. I called for my instructor to come coach us but they were too busy. I have to admit that I felt like crying today. I am a very strong woman with 2 children but I felt so incompetent and weak. I understand that we have to learn it sooner or later and I have a lot more ahead of me. My main concern was the client's safety. Is this common practice in LPN school? What if I injured the client? Sorry to boo hoo.
    •  
  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   jaimemds
    I hate that you feel this way. I hope it does not turn you off on nursing, you some like the kind of nurse i would love to woek with, YOU CARE. You will become more proficient at giving baths, eventually you will be able to contort your own body to bathe a pt. like this all by yourself. You will get better at this. And don't get discouraged when your first few med passes take forever, you will become faster at that too. Anohter good way to learn is to try to pair up with someone who has been a CNA before.
  4. by   flwannaB
    Thank you for the encouragement. No it did not turn me off to nursing. Only made me want to do better and learn more.
    Quote from jaimemds
    I hate that you feel this way. I hope it does not turn you off on nursing, you some like the kind of nurse i would love to woek with, YOU CARE. You will become more proficient at giving baths, eventually you will be able to contort your own body to bathe a pt. like this all by yourself. You will get better at this. And don't get discouraged when your first few med passes take forever, you will become faster at that too. Anohter good way to learn is to try to pair up with someone who has been a CNA before.
  5. by   luv4nursing
    sweetie, when I first started school I felt so overwhelmed bc I wasnt a CNA and many of the others in my class were. Making a bed with someone in it?? What? Transferring patients?? What? Even making a bed was new to me. Dont worry, you will get it and things like this will soon be the least of your worries! oops I meant that to encourage you, not discourage you!

    Im working in peds home health now, but my patient is a 16 y/o nearly adult sized girl. It made me smile when her mom was amazed that I could change the sheets with her in bed or transfer her from bed to chair, etc without breaking a sweat. It made me think back to when I thought I could never do those little things.

    keep at it! you will be fine.
  6. by   LoriAlabamaRN
    It takes getting used to! When someone is contractured, it is soooo hard to bathe them. When I was a CNA, one of my patients was in total traction- both legs, one arm, weights hanging off everywhere. I was afraid to TOUCH him, let alone move him around! But I got them to require a nurse help me with that one because of the danger of moving something wrong. I later heard that a dayshift CNA was trying to clean him after a BM, put a weight up on the foot of the bed, it fell off when he moved the covers and jerked the poor man's leg up into the air! Soooo glad it wasn't me.

    Don't let yourself get overwhelmed. Remember, you can always ask the nurse or your instructor what you need to do, how you can move the patient safely, etc. You'll get the hang of it quicker than you think!
  7. by   BigB
    It's part of adaptiving and overcoming. Thier is the text book way of giving an injections where the patient smiles and sits calmly and the "real world way" of giving an injection where your patient is trying to hit you while you give it. Sometimes you will have patients spit meds back out all over the floor. Stuff like this happens and you just have to adapt to it and not let it get to you too much. Never take it personal though, or it could eat you up inside.
  8. by   yankeesrule
    Like others have said I know it can be overwhelming... I recently posted how on my first day of clinical I blanked out how to do a bed bathe. One thing I would like to see in classroom training with people with hanidcaps. Being that is what I have worked with it takes alot to get use to. Good luck be patient, breathe and remember you are not alone, your not the first person not to know how to handle your situation, and a month from now will be a memory and you perhaps next semester can be a mentor for a newbie on their 1st day of clinical.. good luck cheer up. (p.s. I had many days when i went home and cried. its overwhelming , but remember the big picture and YOU CAN DO IT!!!!

close