Surviving a Double Shift After CNA Training

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Since you finished CNA training and began working as a CNA, how many times has your nursing supervisor approached you and asked you to work a double shift? Or perhaps you enjoy the thought of having four days off during the week, so you volunteered to work double shifts on the hardest-to-staff days: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. In any case, you know working a double shift can be extremely difficult.




Continually working double shifts can often lead to burnout, can place stress on your personal  life, and can make it hard to maintain relationships with those you love. Even if you are in dire need of extra money, you have to listen to your body and use these tips to survive a double shift after CNA training.


Double Shifts After CNA Training


  • Stay Fueled- When you are working a double shift after CNA training, make sure you maintain a healthy diet. Heavy, greasy foods may be quick and easy, but they can weigh you down. Eat healthy, high protein meals to fend off sleep and avoid foods and drinks that have caffeine in them or are known to bring about sleep, like milk, turkey, oats, and bananas. Also, remember your body is going to need energy for the entire double shift, so you need to graze, rather than eat one large meal.


  • Stay Productive- After CNA training, you may find that the most difficult part of working a double shift is the way the clock stops whenever you sit down. Time seems to stand still when you aren’t doing anything. For this reason, you need to make sure you stay productive throughout your entire shift after CNA training. Don’t worry, there is plenty to do! If you finish assisting your patients, consider charting, help your coworkers, filling your cart for the next rounds, and checking in on each and every one of your patients to see if they need any assistance. If all else fails, grab some rags and cleaner from the housekeeping staff and start scrubbing down common areas.


  • Stay Safe- If you aren’t at your best after CNA training, you won’t be able to take care of your patients correctly. If you find yourself nodding off or getting so sleepy you can’t stop yawning and rubbing your eyes, then get some sleep. Set the alarm on your cell phone and use your break time to take a short nap. Even a 15 minute nap after CNA training can increase your productivity and level of alertness. If it’s the end of your shift and you are feeling this way, consider taking a nap before you drive home or catching a ride with a friend. Remember, being too tired to drive can be just as serious as being drunk. You may fall asleep at the wheel, even if you only live a few minutes away from the medical facility you work at after CNA training.


After CNA Training: Survive Your Next Double Shift


Are you ready for a double shift after CNA training? Whether you asked by your supervisor to work an extra shift, or you volunteer to have days off through the week, surviving a double shift isn’t easy. Make sure you follow these tips to ensure you can do it after CNA training.

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