CNA have a tough job, and it’s not easy being on your feet all day. You are constantly lifting patients or equipment, and dealing with accidents that can cause serious injuries. If you’re tired of having to deal with back pain after work, here are 16 tips that will help keep your back safe as a CNA:
- Use proper posture when sitting or standing – Keep your shoulders back, head up, and stomach tucked in for good spinal alignment. Be mindful of not rolling your shoulders forward or arching your lower back too much.
- Be aware of how you’re holding heavy objects – If you have to lift anything heavy, keep your back straight and bend at the knees. This will not only reduce injury risk but also help take stress off of your lower spine.
- Use wrap around – When lifting heavy objects use the “wrap around” technique by bending down on one side of the object while wrapping both arms around it from that side before straightening up to avoid straining the low-back muscles. If you need to lift something off the ground using both hands, make sure you bend at knees instead of the waist.
- Reposition yourself – When you are in an awkward position fetching something, don’t just keep reaching for it or pushing up with your arms to try and get it. Get into a better position first before continuing! It may be helpful to use both hands on one object when possible so that less strain is put on each arm.
- Be mindful of what’s above you – This may seem like common sense, but you would be surprised how many people don’t think about what is above them. So if something falls on your head, it’s probably best to move out of the way!
- Keep good posture – It might sound cliché; however this will help prevent back injuries and make you feel better throughout the day.
- Prevent pinching – One of the most common injuries for nurses is getting their fingers caught while closing a drawer or cabinet. Make sure to use both hands when opening and closing drawers so that you don’t pinch your finger!
- Don’t lift with your back – If possible, try not to bend over unless absolutely necessary. Rather, try to bend your knees and lift with your legs. If you do have to pick something up from the floor, make sure that it is close enough so that you don’t need any extra bending over!
- Use proper equipment – Make sure to use stools or chairs when reaching for objects above eye-level. Also keep in mind that swinging your feet up on a stool is not as safe as sitting down in it.
- Be aware of slippery surfaces – Be sure to wipe up spills and dry off wet floors or equipment if you can, since they may be slippery! This is especially true when the floor has just been washed with chemicals that have not dried yet.
- Don’t reach – If possible, ask another nurse to fetch things for you. This way you don’t have to reach over your head or bend down and risk straining yourself!
- Don’t twist and turn – When moving around the room keep in mind that it is easy for nurses to twist their backs as they move from bed-to-bed. Try to keep your back straight and avoid twisting to minimize strain.
- Wear comfortable shoes– Don’t wear shoes that are uncomfortable, have high heels or no support. These will only lead to more serious injuries, so be sure you wear comfortable and supportive footwear! ake a break whenever possible – If at all possible ask another nurse if they could take over for a few minute so you can sit down.
- Take a break – If you are having pain in your back while lifting or moving patients, try to take short breaks and rotate out with another nurse. This may be difficult if the patient needs constant care; however it will help your body recover so that you can continue working safely for many years to come!
- Keep moving – Moving your body throughout the day is an excellent way to stay limber and relieve stiff joints. But don’t overdo it, or you’ll end up with worse back pain!
- Listen to your body – If your body is telling you it needs a break, then take one. Don’t be afraid to sit down for an hour or so if needed. You can even have someone cover for you while you are resting so that there isn’t any downtime in patient care!
Train your body to be a strong and injury proof as possible. With those above tips, We hope you will be able to work at a comfortable pace and avoid injury.