EQUIPMENT GUIDELINES FOR TRACHEOSTOMY


Determining how much humidity is needed for your tracheostomy will get easier as you become better aquainted with your home environment, and your own "fluid status". You may find your needs are different in the winter, than in summer, or that you need to breath less moisture if you drink more. Your airway is very efficient in supplying moisture to the air that enters your lungs. When it gets behind, your secretions may thicken and be difficult to remove from your airway and lungs. If you are providing adequate humidity, in the form of inhaled moisture, you may be able to "cough" up secretions that you would otherwise need to suction out.


Keep all supplies and equipment used for maintaining your airway very, very clean.
DAILY - Replace water in the water bottle (AP Neb) with fresh distilled water.
TWICE WEEKLY - Clean the AP Neb and the drain bag, change the tubing, and wipe clean your mask.
WEEKLY - Clean the filter on your air compressor, and inventory your supplies.
MONTHLY - Change the tubing on the suction machine, if it has been used.


To clean your AP Neb, wash it is sudsy water-just as you would your dishes. Rinse it well, then soak the parts for 30 minutes in one part white vinegar and one part water. Rinse thoroughly, then air dry on clean toweling before reassembly.


Be sure to keep extra supplies on hand. Always maintain a backup minimum stock on items such as suction catheters and gauze sponges. Inventory your supplies weekly, on a Monday or Tuesday, to allow time to order and receive what you need prior to the weekend.