As a parent, one of our most vulnerable and stressful times is when our kids are sick. There are few worse feelings than having to sit by and wait while your child works through whatever illness they’ve contracted. Parental anxiety with a sick baby increases exponentially because your baby can’t tell you with words what’s wrong.
Their bodies are so little, too, that manifested illnesses can be very dangerous very quickly. That’s one of the reasons why each NICU, or newborn intensive care unit, has so many neonatology instruments on site.
One of the most common pieces of equipment in use for sick babies in the incubator. Whether free-standing, mobile, or table-top, all incubators provide a safe space for babies to recuperate. Incubators are multi-purpose. First, they help keep the little baby at ideal body temperature. Fevers and chills are equally dangerous to an infant.
Keeping germs away is also a valuable purpose the incubator serves. Additionally, incubators can be set to provide an optimum growing and healing environment by adjusting the oxygen, humidity, and light levels.
It’s impossible to restore a baby to health without monitoring that baby’s vital statistics. Various vitals are carefully watched and recorded in a NICU. Cardiorespiratory monitors measure and display the infant’s heart and breathing rates. Frequently, they wear blood pressure cuffs so that can be kept track of as well. When a baby needs continuous monitoring of their blood pressure, it’s done through a small tube inserted directly into the baby’s artery.
An infant’s temperature is watched carefully via a patch affixed directly to their skin. An ingenious device, the pulse oximeter, can detect the hemoglobin levels in your baby’s blood without ever breaking their delicate skin. It uses a light fixed to the baby’s foot to detect the oxygen saturation level of their red blood cells.
Life-saving equipment is an everyday part of the process of helping our sick babies get better.