CNA: Day vs evening shift- which is better?

  1. I'm training on a floor during the evening shift.
    I hear it's better than the day since washing up, cleaning the bed etc is finished and we just have to answer call bells. How is the evening shift? Would you say it's better??
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    Joined: Feb '12; Posts: 42; Likes: 10


  3. by   Abigail612
    Not where I work. The work load is doubled than that of days and we do a lot more than just answer call lights. On average we have 10 or more pt. and we have to get them up toilet them, walk/push them down to dinner, feed them, toilet and wash them for bed, and then put them to bed, then clean up their rooms all while answeering call lights, answering phone, doing vitals and whatever other dirty work the nurse wants, checking and turning off alams, and trying to help those with sundowning. I am usually lucky if I can catch a quick break before 8:30 and I usually dont get my charts started till 9:00 which I usually have to balance with the distractions mentioned previously. I have worked all three shifts and there isn't one that I would say is harder than the other they are all just different.
  4. by   chorkle

    Depends on setting--hospital vs. LTC.

    No exper. in hospital. If we're talking LTC, where I worked, evening shift was much easier than days. (But, no, just answering call lights will never be all that needs doing on any shift.)

    Day shift, you have to get residents up, wash them, and get them dressed. And get them down to breakfast, and lunch, and back, hand feeding those who cannot feed themselves, with toileting after both. Evening shift, only one meal; and putting residents to bed is much easier than getting them up, washed, and dressed, which is also pretty much done in the dark. Day shift was 9 hours (or more) of work which had to be accomplished in 8 hours. Evening shift, there was usually as much as an hour's break--in 5- & 10-min. increments.

    Third shift, which I did not work, involved washing of all wheelchairs, and other cleaning & maintenance work, in addition to many call lights.
  5. by   Psha
    Evening is much easier. At least in a LTC settings.Stripping clothes to put on a gown and putting residents in bed is MUCH easier than stripping gowns to put on proper clothes, changing all briefs, and getting them out of bed.Also, in evening you only have dinner, while day has breakfast and lunch.
  6. by   WannaBNursey
    I think that Day is easier simply because of the smaller patient load. You only have about 8 pts that you're responsible for. Most of the pts are ready to wake up and will work with you, while on evening there's an issue with sundowning and larger pt loads. I find that fall risks are already in wheelchairs and are less likely to fall because they are being watched more by staff. The meals are involved, but really you're mostly passing trays. I prefer day to evening. I'm doing nights right now and the patient load is ridiculous. While I only have a few get ups, the call lights are continuous and when you have 20 pts it's insane.
  7. by   funtimes
    It really depends on how many more people the evening shift have to take care of and how important it is to you to work "normal" hours.
    Where I worked, evening shift was a lot easier because you had less to do and getting your residents to go back to bed is a heck of a lot easier than getting them out of bed in the morning. You also have less management around, which makes it less stressful.

    Despite this, evening shift always had a lot more turnover than day shift, mainly because most people dont like the hours. Ultimately it also depends on the facility and their policies. Where I worked all the residents who werent bed bound were supposed to be washed up and dressed for breakfast, which made for a really hectic morning. They rarely started brand new aides on day shift because it was hard for them to keep up with the work load. The supervisors thought I did really well during my orientation so they put me on day shift despite being new, and it was a struggle at first. Evenings is a lot easier for a new CNA.
  8. by   Band
    Depends on the place and if the patients are part/or total care... evenings is just as hard as mornings where I started working. They tend to put less CNA's where sometimes you get 13 residents in the afternoon as opposed to 8-10 in the mornings.

    Morning: Get them up+change, change linens, transfer to their WC, brush their teeth, comb hair, then get them to breakfast, feed them, take them to activities, then lunch, take them to the unit, start putting some that want to go to bed/their rooms, toilet/turn them, and everything else in between like showers. THey're busy in the morning so some don't try to cause trouble

    Evenings: Give snacking for diabetics, tend the ones that are in their rooms/bed, prepare them for dinner, feed the total care ones, take them back to unit, do the showers, give snacks, start putting some in their beds/rooms, brush teeth, change linen/toilet them, put them to bed/turn the ones in bed. Patients are more tired, but some still try to cause trouble
  9. by   breezycna
    Evening is way harder than days at the LTC where I work. It's not just answering call lights and roses and naptime for CNAs. I work evenings and nights. Our facility seems to have a lot of "shift wars" too.
  10. by   Abigail612
    Evening shift and nights shifts tend to be under apreciated as well. Many times day shift leave things undone and so we as evening shift have to clean up after them as well as do our own work. During holidays day shift is usually offered a free turkey dinner for being willing to work the holidays, the evening and night shifts got nothing, when we asked why we did not recieve a meal we were told we did not deserve it because we did not work as hard. Was not impressed !
  11. by   jval
    I work in a facility that has LTC, short term, alzheimer's and an ortho station. I work in ortho PMs. To me there are many unique pros and cons to working each AM and PMs. I did my clinicals not too long ago in the AM.

    AM Pros (my opinion):
    You get to be apart of someone's morning and can ensure their day starts out right.
    You avoid sundowning and full moons...
    Employees are usually chipper.
    You stay busy, so the shift seems to zip by!
    Many patients (in my ortho station) have Dr. appointments during the AM which makes it so easy to change their bedding and clean their room while their gone.

    AM Cons (in my opinion):
    It's very busy and sometimes you don't get to spend very much one on one time to talk with patients or residents.
    Lots of showers...
    Lots of toileting...
    2 meals! Eek!
    Getting up cranky people...
    Frankly, getting up, dressing and ADLs for 10 people (or how ever many you have) before breakfast... Crazy.
    Family vists. We get lots of family in the AM... While it's a plus for the pt, it's a hastle for you to perform your tasks amongst a small room stuffed with people!

    PM Pros (in my opinion):
    People start to settle down usually...
    Not as many showers.
    1 meal...
    It's so much easier to get people into bed than out of bed...
    It's so much easier to take off make up than to put it on... (The pt's.)
    You get to sleep in!
    Laundry's usually done in the AM or ready by the PM, you don't have to hassle much with the pt's dirty personal laundry getting done.
    Most beds have been changed.
    Most showers have been done...

    PM Cons (in my opnion):
    Meds, meds, MEDS! People want so many meds before the day's over!
    GERD. After dinner, and then going to bed a lot of my pt's complain of heartburn which has you running around.
    FULL MOONS!!!!! Double EEEEK!
    TONS of call lights! Remember, a lot of people stay up pretty late! Once put into bed, those call lights light up the hall way like a Christmas tree!
    Back rub requests.
    LOTS of requests... "I want ice cream." "I need another pillow." "I spilled my water, can you change my whole bed?"

    So, it depends on you and what you're up for!
    All my own opinions based on my own experiences!
  12. by   jval
    Also... We get more admits in the PM... Lengthy process!