Published Jan 30, 2005
We have started learning trach care this week and this is so gross to me. How do keep from gagging while doing this procedure? I am so afraid I will get sick if/when I have to do this in clinicals. Anyone have any tips????
when i had to scrub out a trach with the little thing that looks like a toilet brush, when i started scrubbing, i looked out the window. never looked down at floating gobs of sputum in the water/h2o2. yuck. then pulles the trach up to my eyes to look thru to see if it was clean. tried not to look at the sptum. it was still disgusting
jenrninmi, MSN, RN
Sorry, I wish I could help. This has been the only thing I gag about. I guess the suctioning doesn't bother me that much, it's when the patient coughs when it's not capped and the sputum goes shooting across the room. I almost lost my cookies when that happend to my patient. Thank God I was standing behing him and so he didn't see the look on my face. I recovered, but I really don't want to see that again. :stone
You know.....I thought I was the only one with this problem.It's nice to know I'm not alone. I feel sick when pts describe what their sputum looks like,I want to gag. Sometimes they "save" it for me to see..........Yuuuukkk!!!!
personally, i enjoy doing trach care... but then again, i've always been a little strange...
but when it gets a little gross, i always try to remember that i'm helping a person breath by removing that gunky crap... try and remember how the person, who's lying in that bed, is feeling... how embarassing it must be to see people make faces and grimace while caring for you and how hard it must be to not be able to do such a basic thing for yourself... or the feeling of drowning in your own sputum... that usually gets me focusing back on the patient, and not my own discomfort... :)
Marie_LPN, RN, LPN, RN
Take a big gulp of water before you go in the room, and another gulp after you're done. A dry mouth doesn't help. Chew a fresh piece of minty gum.
While you're doing the care, do breathing exercises. Deep breath in, and exhale. This helps me keep the nausea at bay.
wear a mask so they don't see the look on your face. Also you can put menthol in the mask as sort of a distractor... I've been told every nurse has a vice, and sputum is mine.
This is exactly what i am worried about as well! Blood, urine, feces? Won't bother me too much but, lugies? EWWW! I can feel the cold sweat coming already!
klone, MSN, RN
I try to think of it from a scientific standpoint. Rather than lugies (or lung oysters, as my husband calls them), I think of the chemical makeup - water, goblet cell secretions, cellular debris, some bacteria. And what's bacteria, anyway, but unicellular organisms? Eh, not so bad when you think of it scientifically.
Same with poop - undigested food waste, water, bacteria, bile salts and bile pigments!
And breathe through your nose.
Have you watched or done it yourself? I find that watching a procedure that is gross is worse than just doing it myself. I do a lot of trach care at my job and it doesn't bother me at all. But the first time I saw trach care it grossed me out.
i dunno, goblet cell secretions sounds pretty disgusting still :)
I guess I am weird too LOL! I have done nothing but trach care and vent clients for 5 years. It is rather strange to be eating your lunch in a chair situated right next to the suction container with yellow sputum floating around :) I used to bother me but time has made that change.
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