After CNA Training: Caring for Bed Bound Patients (Part Three)

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In this three part series, we’ve discussed how to improve the quality of life for bed bound patients after CNA training and how to assist them with eating. While there are many steps to a patient’s care in this situation, such as making an occupied bed and giving a bed bath, one of the most overlooked parts of taking care of a bed bound patient is helping them lead a happier and more fulfilling life.

After CNA training, it is important to realize that patients who are bed bound are often much more susceptible to depression. After all, they are stuck, each and every day, in their bed without real access to the outside world. You can help, though, with just a few simple steps and bit of understanding.

After CNA Training: Alleviating Depression

Consider this scenario: You walk into Mrs. Shoe’s room each and every day and find her staring at the door, with a look that makes you feel as if she is waiting for someone to come in. Mrs. Shoe can’t talk, she doesn’t smile, and her entire day consists of laying in bed and listening to the radio or television while she waits for a caregiver or family member to arrive.

This doesn’t sound like a happy and fulfilled life, does it? What do you think you could do to improve her life after CNA training? Here are some tips.

  • Take the time to talk to your patients. Even if they can’t speak, they will appreciate the sound of another human’s voice. Talk to them about current events, the weather outside, or your new puppy. Let them know that you are there for them and want to include them in a life outside their four walls.
  • Play games with them after CNA training. If your patient is able to, play games with them while they lie in bed. Games like cards, crossword puzzles, or board games will help to alleviate some of their boredom and help reduce their risk for depression.
  • Read to them. Bed bound patients have to be positioned differently every few hours, and this means they may not always be able to find their entertainment in television; after all, they won’t always be facing the TV. Instead, sit down and read a few chapters of a book to them. They will feel better with you by their side after CNA training and will be able to concentrate on something other than the fact that they are lying in a bed for just a little while.
  • Open the curtains after CNA training. While there will be times when your patient will want to sleep and will require a dark room, at any other time, let as much sunlight in as possible. Sunlight will not only provide extra warmth, but has been proven again and again to help relieve depression.
  • Use a gentle touch. We all need human companionship, and while professional decorum may dictate that you can’t hug your patients after CNA training, that doesn’t mean you can’t offer a gentle squeeze of their hand or a pat on the shoulder. A simple touch can let them know you care and can immediately lift their spirits.

Caring for Patients Who Are Bed Bound After CNA Training

If you are caring for a bed bound patient after CNA training, make sure you are doing everything you can to not only carry out everyday tasks that improve their health, but tasks that improve their quality of life, help them eat with as much independence as possible, and help them avoid depression after CNA training.

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