Humidifiers: General knowledgeHHumidifiers: General knowledgeHumidifiers: General knowledgeEnglishRespiratoryChild (0-12 years);Teen (13-18 years)Lungs;TracheaRespiratory systemNon-drug treatmentCaregivers Adult (19+) Hospital healthcare providersNA2017-06-29T04:00:00ZReshma Amin, MD, FRCPC, MSc;Faiza Syed, BHSc, RRT;Tuyen Tran, RRT000Flat ContentHealth A-Z

 

 

Humidifiers: General knowledge2921.00000000000Humidifiers: General knowledgeHumidifiers: General knowledgeHEnglishRespiratoryChild (0-12 years);Teen (13-18 years)Lungs;TracheaRespiratory systemNon-drug treatmentCaregivers Adult (19+) Hospital healthcare providersNA2017-06-29T04:00:00ZReshma Amin, MD, FRCPC, MSc;Faiza Syed, BHSc, RRT;Tuyen Tran, RRT000Flat ContentHealth A-Z<figure><img alt="Girl wearing an HME on her tracheostomy" src="https://assets.aboutkidshealth.ca/akhassets/trach_girl_with_HME_EN.jpg" /> </figure> <p>When you breathe through your nose, the air is warmed and humidified (water is added) as it enters the nasal cavity. However, when a child has a <a href="/Article?contentid=2915&language=English"> tracheostomy tube</a>, the air is not warmed or humidified because it enters through the tube instead of the nose.</p><h2>Why is it important for my child to breathe in humidified air?</h2><p>Air that is warmed and humidified helps thin out <a href="/Article?contentid=2927&language=English">secretions (mucus)</a>, making them easier for your child to cough up.</p><h2>What are some signs that the air my child breathes in lacks humidity (is too dry)?</h2><p>If the air your child breathes in is too dry, your child may have:</p><ul><li>thick secretions</li><li>an ongoing cough</li><li>secretions that are slow to move up the suction catheter during <a href="/Article?contentid=2929&language=English">suctioning</a></li><li>secretions that collect on the outside of the catheter during suctioning</li><li>secretions that collect on the inside of the tracheostomy tube (mucus plugs), causing partial or complete blockage.</li></ul><h2>Role of hydration in releasing secretions</h2><p>Sometimes your child’s mucus may be very thick despite proper use of a humidifier. Thick mucus can be a sign of dehydration.</p><p>Your child can become dehydrated due to:</p><ul><li>frequent suctioning</li><li> <a href="/article?contentid=30&language=English" target="_blank">fever</a></li><li> <a href="/article?contentid=746&language=English" target="_blank">vomiting</a> </li><li> <a href="/article?contentid=7&language=English" target="_blank">diarrhea</a></li><li>sweating<br></li><li>increased activity</li><li>inadequate fluid intake.</li></ul><p>To help your child release secretions, it is important to both humidify the air your child breathes and keep your child well hydrated.</p><h2>How can I humidify the air my child breathes in?</h2><p>You can humidify (add water to) the air your child is breathing while they have a tracheostomy with a device called a humidifier. There are four types of humidifiers:</p><ul><li> <a href="/Article?contentid=2922&language=English">heat and moisture exchanger (HME)</a></li><li> <a href="/Article?contentid=2923&language=English">non-heated humidifier (large volume nebulizer)</a></li><li> <a href="/Article?contentid=2924&language=English">heated high flow humidifier (for example, Airvo)</a></li><li> <a href="/Article?contentid=2925&language=English">heated humidifier (for example, Pass-over)</a>.</li></ul><p>These are all explained over the following pages.</p> <a class="btn btn-primary" href="https://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/trachvent">Return to trach-vent learning hub</a> <br>Humidifiers: General knowledgeTruehttps://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=2922&language=Englishhttps://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=2920&language=English

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