Providing nail care for a patient is an important task of a CNA in order to help prevent the spread of disease and infection which can come from having dirty nails and hands. As most health care provider knows, the hands are one of the areas of the body which is more exposed to dirt and bacteria and which can be the easiest ways to spread it. By providing the appropriate nail care, the patient is thus kept in better health and it also helps to encourage them to take care of themselves for a faster recovery period.
The first step is to knock and greet the patient by their name and tell them that you are there to provide nail care for them. You should introduce yourself as well to the patient. After this, proceed to collect all the things that you will need for the nail care such as towels, washcloths, a basin of warm water, lotion, orange wood stick for cleaning under the nails, nail cutters, and nail file.
After this, proceed to wash your hands thoroughly and after drying them well, put a fresh pair of gloves on.
The next step is to let the patient soak their fingers in warm water making sure that they are in a comfortable temperature for the patient. Let them do this for a couple of minutes to loosen up the dirt which may be on the nails.
After this, proceed to clean the hands of the patient on both the top and bottom part using a clean piece of wet soapy washcloth. Clean the areas between the fingers as well making sure that they are all thoroughly cleaned.
Next, clean the areas under the nails of the patient using an orangewood stick. Try to clean each and every nail and wipe any dirt which may have stuck to the stick on a clean cloth.
After the process is done, rinse the hands of the patient by letting them dip their hands into the basin full of warm water. Rub the hands well in order to remove any soap.
Next, remove the patient’s hand from the basin and towel-dry them. Proceed to cut their nails making sure that they are all evenly cut with no crooked or sharp edges that may cut the skin. After this, use a nail file on the cut edges to ensure a smooth ended nail.
Apply a sufficient amount of lotion of the hands of the patient to prevent dryness and to moisturize the nails too. Make sure that you have provided ample support for the hands of the patient throughout the process and that you have asked their personal preferences when it comes to nail care.
Make sure that they are in the most comfortable position and that their call lights are within their reach right before you leave the patient. Remove your gloves and proceed to wash your hands thoroughly. Dispose of any non-reusable item and put dirty linens and towels on the hamper before you leave.