Monday, December 19, 2016

Career Paths for Certified Nursing Assistants

nurse and elderly woman in wheelchair
Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA) are key to the daily care of individuals that have limited cognitive or physical abilities. They assist with the basic activities associated with living and act as a principal caregiver. CNAs typically perform their duties under the supervision of a Registered Nurse (RN) or Licensed Nurse Practicioner (LPN).

CNA careers including working with patients in nursing homes, hospice care, or residential care facilities. They provide assistance with eating, hygiene, dispensing medication, and patient transfers. Some CNAs that are assigned to at-home care may assist with grocery shopping, light cleaning, washing laundry, and transporting the patient to appointments.

How to Become a CNA

To become a CNA, candidates must first pass post-secondary CNA program and an exam. There are many of these programs available in community colleges, online schools, and trade schools. Once a CNA passes their state-approved certification exam, several CNA careers become available, including employment in several of the environments previously mentioned. Although a certification is a must, CNAs must also have other important qualities, including compassion, patience, communication skills, and physical stamina since they spend much time on their feet and moving patients. Additional certifications CNAs may earn include Certified Medication Assistant (CMA) and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

CNA Pay and Career Development

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for CNAs is currently at $25,710, though CNA salaries can vary by state pretty significantly. This wage attracts many entry-level nursing professionals who are just getting started in their careers. Although the career of a CNA may offer some fulfillment, increased pay opportunities encourage many to continue to drive towards being either an RN or LPN. One of the most efficient ways for CNAs to do this (during their initial training) is to complete a diploma that will transfer into an accredited nursing program later on. Many community colleges offer these types of programs.

RNs and LPNs do benefit from CNA experiences because they develop core skills in basic patient care and relationships. This allows student RNs and LPNs to focus their learning on the more complex medical care surrounding their profession, including earning the required degree. Although one can become an RN by obtaining an associate’s degree, many hospitals require a bachelor’s degree. States also require all RNs to pass the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN). RN professionals can earn a median annual wage of $67,490 and can enjoy a long-term career in a growing field.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Conditions Acupuncture Can Treat

Acupuncture works by stimulating the body’s own natural ability to heal itself. Acupuncturists insert needles into meridians, also known as acupoints. There are 361 meridians that TCM practitioners have mapped on the human body that run along 14 energy pathways. If you have a medical condition that needs treatment, the acupuncturist will examine you and then insert needles in various acupoints to affect treatment.

Acupuncture has been use for more than 3,000 years as one of the primary components of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It has been used for much less time in the West, but more and more it is being seen as an effective treatment for a wide range of medical conditions. Here is a look at some of the medical conditions acupuncture is particularly effective at treating.

Back Pain
One of the most exciting things about acupuncture is that it is commonly effective at treating conditions that Western medicine is notorious for struggling to treat. First among these is back pain. Many Western doctors are stymied by treating back pain, but most types of back pain can be relieved almost immediately from the first acupuncture treatment.

People who suffer from chronic headaches that Western medicine can only treat with debilitating opiate drugs can find simple, effective pain relief with acupuncture.

Arthritis is one of the most frustrating conditions, but many people find great relief from their arthritis with regular acupuncture treatments.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel is another painful condition that Western medicine struggles to do anything with other than prescribing opiates. However, acupuncture is very effective at relieving pain for carpal tunnel sufferers.

Other Forms of Pain
No matter what kind of pain a patient has, acupuncture is usually effective at providing them relief. This includes both acute and chronic forms of pain. Anyone who has struggled to find pain relief with traditional methods can usually get help from acupuncture.

For anyone who has nausea from cancer treatments or other causes, they will find that acupuncture treatments may be effective at settling their stomachs and increasing the appetites.

Gastrointestinal Disorders
Any kind of gastric distress that a patient suffers from can be treated with acupuncture. Irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease and gastroesophageal reflux disease are just a few of the gastrointestinal disorders that can be treated with acupuncture.

Many women who have had trouble conceiving have found themselves getting pregnant with the help of acupuncture treatments.

Monday, March 21, 2016

The Evolution of Dentistry through the Years

I went to my local dentist in Lansing, Michigan a few weeks ago and it dawned on me how happy I am to receive dental care now as opposed to any time in the past. Can you imagine tooth extraction in the 1800s? No thank you. Dentistry has seen a significant morphing from a basic skills profession to a specialized medical field. It has seen great strides from the 1700s when it was first seen as a standalone profession. Before this, one could very well be a barber, a minor surgeon, an embalmer as well as provide tooth extracting services. A rudimentary tool for tooth extraction called the turnkey was invented in the 1800s. This era included the use of tin, gold foil, lead and silver for filling while ivory and cattle teeth were used for dentures. These are some of the changes.