Clinical Reference Systems: Pediatric Advisor 10.0
Oxygen Therapy: Safety Precautions
Oxygen is a medication ordered for your child by your
doctor. The liter flow (amount) of oxygen that your
child needs is determined by studies done at the hospital or
your doctor's office. Do not take your child off oxygen
unless your doctor tells you to.
Oxygen itself is nonflammable but will increase the rate
a material burns. For example, a spark that lands on
clothing will normally only smolder and cause a small burn
hole, but with oxygen in use the clothing will ignite.
Do not let your child play with toys that have friction
motors or emit sparks.
- Heat sources
If you have a wood stove or fireplace in your home, be
sure the fire box is enclosed or a spark screen is in
use. The oxygen source and your child should be kept 4
to 6 feet away from any heat source.
Do not smoke in the house and absolutely do not smoke in
the car when your child is present. Sparks from
cigarettes are impossible to control and could easily
start a fire. In addition, your child should never be
exposed to secondhand smoke.
- Oils, grease, and petroleum-based products
Do not use any oil, grease, or petroleum-based products
on any of your oxygen equipment or near the child.
These materials are highly flammable. With supplemental
oxygen present, they will burn readily.
Do not put any petroleum-based lotions or creams (like
Vaseline) on your child's face or upper chest. Check
the listing of contents of such products before
purchase. If your child's skin needs to be moisturized,
use cocoa butter or aloe vera products.
It is best if your child is not in the kitchen when you
are frying any foods. The combination of oxygen, heat,
and splattering of oil or grease can be a fire hazard.
If the child's presence is unavoidable, keep the child
at least 4 to 6 feet from the stove.