Thursday, November 13, 2014

Breathing Treatments

With Enterovirus right now, and the Flu and RSV season right around the corner, I find myself being called to help with breathing treatments more than ever!

Young children, mostly toddlers and preschoolers tend to resist the mask. At my hospital respiratory therapy is responsible for breathing treatments so I don't have time for medical play until afterwards. Here are my go to quick tricks when I'm called in to help on the fly!

1. iPad- Play a game on the iPad. My go-to games for breathing treatments are Cake Pop maker, Search and finds and any puzzle app. You can also watch a video on Youtube, or play the patient's favorite song.

2. Bubbles-During a breathing treatment, infants and toddlers can be mesmerized by bubbles. Blowing a bunch of bubbles and dimming the lights during their breathing treatment can help instantly calm.(Hint: for kiddos in isolation rooms use a bubble machine or let mom or dad blow the bubbles)

3. Movie/TV show- When I am in a pinch and called in without time to grab a distraction item, we always have movies on our Peds floor. I can grab a movie or turn on a show. Then I can ask the child questions about what is going on in the movie or TV show to redirect their attention from the mask. 

4. Ask the child who can help them hold the mask- This gives the child some control back in the situation. Sometimes kids want to hold it themselves other times they want a nurse or parent to hold.(hint: sometimes the strap is the worst part just holding it close to the child's face will work)

5. Doll Modeling- Give an infant sized mask to the child's doll or stuffed animal, and model how the doll wears her mask and takes deep breaths. 

5.Comfort positions-Utilize mom, dad or other adult. Let them lay or sit with the child in bed or in a chair.


Get some Fun Nebulizer Masks or let your patients decorate the plain ones!

What about you? What works for you during a breathing treatment distraction?