Most people get into this profession because of their love for humanity and the need and want to help others. This is a good reason, as compassion and empathy definitely help you be a better CNA and carry out your duties more effectively, and to get more job satisfaction out of your career. However, for anyone starting out as a CNA, some challenges may arise that need to be overcome.
Long hour shifts
A job of a CNA can be demanding in more ways than one, and one of these ways is the long hour shifts which can extend to 8-12 hours as patients may need constant care. This can take a lot out of such an exerting job and many would find this challenging to deal with.
Physically demanding work
The job of a CNA can also be physically demanding, at it requires caring for immobile patients, helping them sit up and walk around, taking them to the bathroom, bathing them and changing them. You might even be required to keep the patients’ surrounding neat and tidy, and all this can take a lot out of a person.
Some patients you deal with might also pose issues. When you first start out, you will need to work hard to gain the patients’ trust, and to build a rapport with them since you will be caring for them in the most intimate of ways. Some patients however can be generally difficult because of their medical conditions, temperament or age, and this can take an emotional toll on a CNA.
Juggling different responsibilities
A CNA has various different responsibilities that come under the broad heading of patient care. They need to check and record vital signs, food intake, moods and emotions, have to clean up after patients and help them carry out basic day-to-day tasks. For this a CNA must be very organized, calm and collected, otherwise things can easily get out of hand with the large variety of tasks at hand.
Problems with other members of staff
When you first start out as a CNA, it is natural to face some hostility from staff members at equal levels as you, as they may feel superior. You must try and improve communication and turn this into healthy competition. You may even face issues with senior nurses above you, as they might try to turn you into scapegoats.
While these challenges come with the job, a good CNA can overcome them easily, and turn it into a learning experience. Besides, the job is so emotionally fulfilling that the feeling of satisfaction you get out of helping others makes up for most of the challenges you have to face.