Respiratory ailments amongst children during monsoons: Understanding home nebulisation

Dr Preyas Vaidya, a Consultant Pulmonologist, Fortis Hospital, Mulund, shares his insights about how to make nebulisation comfortable with the infants and children

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Monsoons related infections and diseases are at a peak, and as a parent, you must be equipped to take care of your child’s medical requirements, be it a mild cough or fever.

Respiratory ailments, triggered by pollution, pollen, and environmental conditions, are on a high, especially, amongst young patients. Wheezing, Coughing, rapid breathing, and Lung infections, such as Pneumonia and Bronchitis is a common occurrence during the season.

Using a nebuliser appropriately to combat these situations is advantageous, compared to other respiratory relief methods such as inhalers, and liquid medicines.

Nebulisers are effective in delivering asthma medications to infants and small children and to anyone who has difficulty using an asthma inhaler.

One crucial benefit of using the nebuliser is that, unlike other forms of respiratory relief, it is an effective way in children and has an immediate effect.

Also, the child does not have to synchronise with the nebuliser as it can be administered even when the child is short of breath. Giving a rescue nebuliser till one can see a doctor, may ease the symptoms.

However, if one or two rescue nebulisation does not help, it is crucial to visit the nearest emergency room. Ideally, parents speak to their Pulmonologist or local physician to understand the best way to administer Nebulisation.

This discussion will also help the parents understand the critical aspects of their child’s treatment and equip them with the right information.

Administering Nebulisation at home:

Place the mask on your child’s face. You may need to engage your child during the treatment to enable ease administration. Diversions such as a cartoon movie or favourite toy may help to keep them from denying you from applying the mask, or from removing it repeatedly.

Place the mouthpiece appropriately between your child’s teeth and lips, have them breathe in and out slowly through their mouth until all the medicine has been consumed, keeping a careful watch.

Turn on the machine, and the treatment takes around 8-10 minutes to complete; it may take longer initially, but your child will gradually adjust and cooperate.

Tips to make your child use a Nebuliser smoothly:

  • Make it part of your child’s daily routine. It is advisable to use the nebuliser at the same time each day, so your child knows what to expect.
  • You may let your child beautify the nebuliser machine with stickers, as it will soothe his emotions.
  • Make your child sit on your lap, as it will make him/ her feel comfortable.
  • For a restless baby, try using the nebuliser when your child is asleep.
  • Appreciate your child, you might have to give him a small prize, as a reward for cooperating.