If you’re a CNA, then you know that difficult patients are just part of the job. Sometimes it can be frustrating to deal with these patients because they often don’t understand or appreciate what nurses do for them. But there are things that you can do to make your work more manageable and less stressful. Here are 16 tips for dealing with difficult patients as a CNA:
1. Be professional
Speak to your patient in a respectful and professional manner at all times. It’s important to be nice even if the other person isn’t being so nice themselves, because it can help create a better atmosphere for everyone involved. Keep your tone of voice calm and professional at all times. This helps the patient feel more comfortable around you instead of feeling like they’re being scolded for something that isn’t their fault. It can also help them get better faster because they won’t be so stressed out about it.
2. Watch your body language
do not roll your eyes at the patient or make any kind of facial expression that shows you’re annoyed, because it’s disrespectful and unprofessional. It can also cause them to feel like they’re being rushed through their treatment even if you aren’t doing anything like that. And if they think that, then they will most likely fight you on it and make treatment even more difficult for you.
3. Give them clear instructions
Give the patient clear instructions on what they need to do with their treatment plan before you leave them alone. This is a good way to make sure that they’re going to take the right steps when you aren’t there. It can also help them feel more in control of their own treatment.- If necessary, give a family member or friend instructions on what they need to do for your patient. This is especially important if it’s something that only a caregiver would know how to do, such as a certain diet or medication schedule.
4. Ask for additional help
If the patient is too sick to be left alone, then talk to their family member or caregiver about how they can best help with your patient’s care while you’re gone. This will prevent them from doing anything that might hurt your patient like giving them something that could cause an allergic reaction or taking them somewhere that could make their condition worse.
5. Be polite and humble
Let the patient know if they’re doing something differently than what you asked, but do not scold them for it because this can cause a lot of extra stress and anxiety about the situation. Instead just tell them calmly that they need to continue doing whatever it is that you requested instead of what they’re doing.
6. Earn their trust
Show empathy for your patient’s situation, but do not give them false hope like telling them that it will be okay when you can’t really promise anything yet because this is unprofessional and unfair to the patient. It could also cause their condition to get worse which would only make things harder on everyone involved.
7. Be honest
Be honest with people when you are dealing with them, whether it’s about their condition or something else. It can be tempting to try and help the other person avoid bad news because you think that they can’t handle it. But being honest with your patient will show them respect and encourage trust in the future.- If there are certain things that must remain confidential for medical reasons, then let your patient know that, but give them enough information so they know what’s going on.
8. Be patient
Be patient with your patients and try to understand where they are coming from. It can be hard for anyone who isn’t a nurse or medical professional to understand the ins and outs of medicine.- Try asking questions about their situation if you need clarification. This will help show that you care about what your patient is going through.
9. Don’t take their behavior personally
Be empathetic with your patients if they are having a bad day because of something that happened at home or other personal reasons. It can be frustrating for nurses to deal with someone who isn’t receptive to their treatment, but try not to take it personally.
Take the time out to listen to what your patient has to say and try to understand where they are coming from. This will make them see you as a friend instead of an enemy, making it easier for everyone involved.
Remember that their bad behavior isn’t directed at you as a person, but at their own medical condition or something else that’s going on in their life. Keep a professional attitude and treat them kindly instead of being rude back.
10. Be easy to talk to
If there is something that your patients need help with but aren’t asking you about, then ask if there’s anything else that they’d like some assistance with. This helps the patient feel like they have more personal freedom, which can make them happier overall.
11. Don’t judge them
Try not to compare your patients with one another or assume that all of their symptoms are the same.- Each person is an individual and should be treated as such. It’s important to take note of each problem carefully instead of writing it off as something similar to another issue.
12. Be assertive but not aggressive
Make sure to stand up for yourself without coming across as combative or unwilling to listen. This will help your patient see you as a professional and someone they can trust, which is important when it comes to getting them better in the long run.
13. Ask your seniors
When necessary, ask for backup from another nurse or doctor if there’s something that has come up and you don’t know how to deal with it.- There’s no shame in not knowing something. Being honest about it is the best way to deal with this type of situation and get help from others if they can provide you with more insight into your patient’s condition.
14. Take care of yourself
Don’t forget to take care of yourself as well by eating healthy, getting enough sleep and exercising regularly.- This will help you be more productive when it comes to taking care of others. You should also work on your social life every now and then too because this can make you happier overall!
15. Have right mindset
If you are having a bad day, then try not to take it out on your patients or other nurses around you. It’s important that everyone is able to focus on their work without worrying about all of the stress for themselves and others. Take some time before work starts if necessary so that you can get yourself in the right mindset.
16. If you know for sure, avoid the difficult patient
If possible, try not working with patients who you know are going to be difficult for whatever reasons. It can take its toll on your well-being, especially if the patient has chronic problems that aren’t likely to change anytime soon.- This is important because it helps everyone feel more comfortable and less stressed out in general, which makes things go much smoother overall.
Being a CNA is rewarding, but it can also be frustrating dealing with difficult patients. However if you keep these tips in mind when working, then your job will be much easier and less stressful for everyone involved.