One thing many people don’t realize is just exactly how much training is needed for the care of the trach before you are allowed to go home with your child – I know training right?! Now if only there was training on how to deal with toddler life 😉 —
Before you are allowed to take anyone with a tracheostomy home you have to be Level 3 Trach Trained, and have basic CPR. Trach trained means that you are able to suction, you are able to do the daily care of maintaining the cleanliness of the trach – making sure the area around the trach is clean and dry, the pad under the trach is not dirty and falling apart, and that the trach ties, the neck piece holding the trach in place, is clean and dry as well; and that you are able to change the trach.
Anyone that takes care of C alone gets this training, meaning both the Mr and I have this training, we then trained my sister in law, and the hospital trained C’s Continuing Care Assistants and Daycare staff.
Everyone that would take care of C needs this training so that they are ready for the ‘ifs’ and emergencies so if there was something stuck in his trach, or if somehow the trach came out they would be able to change out/ put a new trach back in.
BUT Mr. P and I are trained as primary care providers so that we can change the trach at regular intervals, for us this is typically every other week. That’s right, every other -ish week we un-velcro the neck piece holding in the one thing that helps our child breath, take out the trach and put a new one in.
One question I hear a lot is “can’t you bring him to the hospital to do that?” and I simply say, “yes, but why?” This happens so regularly that many times if we are ever at the hospital we are the ones doing the care, with staff –nursing and doctors– being impressed with how well we are doing.
We are pros.
We are pros because we know our child, and we do this every other week. Many of the doctors and nurses do not have to do this on the regular, and they recognize this, so unless there is an actual medical procedure — like C’s scopes — we are more comfortable taking care of all the trach needs.
So, if there is a night that Mr. P or I say we can’t do something because it is “trach change day” now you know what we mean 🙂
If you are wondering how you can help, I would love to encourage you to join the Mom’s of Trach Babies- Global Tracheostomy Tube Awareness Week Facebook page to hear others stories and see more information specific to a trach, and maybe consider purchasing the Jamberry Wraps I have designed specifically for this week (Available in the US and Canada), with a portion of the sales going to Mom’s of Trach Babies to help with prizes designed with our trach kids in mind, as well as to help get trach supplies to those who need help getting them.