Because your child breathes differently with a tracheostomy, he or she needs help getting rid of mucus and secretions. By inserting a small suction catheter into the trach tube, mucus is removed and your child breathes easier.
When you first start using suction, you and your child may be uncomfortable with the procedure. Your child will probably cry or pull away. But remember, your child needs suctioning to breathe easier. Concentrate on what you are doing rather than how your child is behaving. After time, you will both get used to suctioning and it will become easier.
When your child first gets the tracheostomy, it will be necessary to suction several times during the day and night. After your child becomes comfortable with the trach, suctioning will become less frequent.
Suction only when necessary, not on a schedule, but at least several times a day. Judge the time interval between suctioning by the amount of secretions produced. Our experts recommend that you suction before bedtime, first thing in the morning, before meals, and before your child goes outside. If your child has a cold, suctioning should be done more frequently.
By suctioning effectively, you will decrease the chance of respiratory tract infections, such as pneumonia.