Soins complexes à domicile pour enfants
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Everyday tips

Bathing and swimming

If your child has a tracheostomy, refer to the appropriate section to complete the information.

Bath:

  • Discuss with your healthcare team the option to have longer tubing in the ventilation circuit to facilitate bathing.
  • Keep the ventilatory assistance device as far away as possible from the bath to protect it from water splashing.

Facial care:

  • Check your child’s skin daily, especially at the points of contact of the mask to the face, if applicable. In particular, check the bridge of the nose where skin breakdown may occur.
  • Gently clean the skin, avoid rubbing and pat gently to dry.
  • Avoid hot water and scented soaps which may dry or irritate the skin.
  • Hydrate facial skin by applying a moisturizer as needed; this may help keep the skin soft and supple.
  • Make sure the skin is dry before putting the ventilation mask on your child.

Mouth care:

  • It is important to clean your child’s mouth at least twice a day.
  • If your child has no teeth, use a small face cloth or a gauze dampened with water and rolled around your index finger, to gently rub your child’s gums front to back.
  • Once teeth start to appear, it is important to brush your child’s teeth after each meal and at bedtime. If your child does not eat by mouth, brush the teeth twice daily. Since young children have a tendency to swallow toothpaste instead of spitting it out, use only the size of a small grain of rice in children under 2 years old and the size of a small pea in children up to 6 years old. Use this time to also gently massage their gums with the toothbrush.
  • As your child matures, teach and supervise brushing of the teeth.
  • Apply, if required, a hydrating product for the lips if they are chapped and dry.

Nose care:

  • In all children, secretions, along with bacteria and viruses collect in the nose. Keeping your child’s nose clean helps prevent lung infections.
  • If your child is incapable of blowing his/her own nose effectively, saline drops will be helpful to keep the nose clean.
  • Refer to your child’s health care team for the technique and the frequency of nasal care recommended for your child, including the procedure for the preparation of homemade saline solution and safe storage.

Swimming: 

  • Discuss with your healthcare team whether it is possible for your child to swim or not.
  • If swimming is permitted, then discuss the addition of longer tubing in the ventilation circuit with the healthcare team.
  • Keep the ventilatory assistance device as far away as possible from the water to protect it from splashing.

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Disclaimer: As medical and technical knowledge is constantly changing, this information is provided to you for educational purposes only. The information provided on this website is strictly provided on an “as is” basis without warranty of any kind, whether express or implied and should not at any time be considered as a substitute for professional advice from your physician or other qualified healthcare professional.

A collaboration of clinical experts across Quebec has taken every care to ensure that the information contained in this document is accurate, complete, and reflective of evidence-based practices. However, “Complex care at home for children” collaboration cannot and does not assume any responsibility for application of the content of this document or for any information that may be present in the websites cited as a reference. These web sites are provided for informational purposes only and do not represent the collaboration endorsement of any companies or products. Always consult your child’s physician and/or a qualified healthcare professional to learn more about recommendations specific to your child’s health needs.

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