June 18, 2004

Using One Of Those Suction Nosepickers

The kid went through a sniffly, congested phase a week ago, so be rolled out the needle-tipped squeezeball nosepicker to help her breathe. A couple of awkward attempts caused her to go into meltdown; and very soon, she'd start screaming like a banshee as soon as the bulb came into her line of sight. If you add up vestigial childhood/infant memories of a) suction nosepickers and b) rectal thermometers, I bet you could explain about 90% of all the alien abduction claims out there.

Anyway, here's what I noticed: I was prepping the nosepicker too late. I was squeezing it flat (in order to suck up the snot) right in front of her face, which sent a concentrated jet of air right up her nose. THIS is what freaked her out.

Once I figured out to get the thing ready on the side, I'd just talk to her calmly, explaining what I was going to do [a la Charlie Brown's teacher: "mwah mwah snot mwa mwa mwa"], she was totally cool with me poking a rubber syringe into her nostril.

Oh, and maybe you're much better at it than I am, but I never got much out. The squeegee seems effective at bringing the snot to the front, where you can get it with a kleenex or the elongated nail on your pinky. ["Why no, officer, it's to pick my son's nose."]


This reminded me of a Trixie Picture of the Day (and my comment thereto.)

I don't know if URLs will work in your comments, so I'm making the link text the URL.


Our baby hates the snot-sucker, too, but it's the suction that she hates.

Sometimes if you give her a shot of saline in the nose, wait a minute or so, and then stroke her nose (from the bridge towards the nostril), she'll sneeze out whatever's in there.

And once, in the dead of night, when I really didn't want to get up and dig out the snot-sucker, I just put my mouth over her nose and inhaled the snot to the front where I could flick it away with a fingernail. I'm so ashamed.

Yeeeow. I might have to start a prize for comments like that. Maybe a whole category.

Snot-suckers are fun, but wait until your child is an experimental toddler who likes to see what fits up there. If anything like a broken crayon or a Cheerio gets lodged up there, you have to pray he'll sneeze it out and save you a trip to the ER.

For your everyday FO (foreign object) removal, a good pair of foreceps and a good penlight will do ya fine. Bribing the child to sit still long enough is your own problem.

IMPORTANT: Don't try to retreive what you can't see.

However, for the truly brave: If you *can* see it, but can't work the foreceps around it, the stick part of a Q-Tip (break off one of the ends with a little of that blue sticky-tac stuff on the end sometimes works.

Both of the above are cousin experiences, I don't know if I'm going to do them with Rachel when the time comes.


I suddenly have a burning urge to develop a legal disclaimer.

Although the idea of practicing on your cousins before trying it on your own kid DOES have a certain logic...

Our son was born a few weeks before your daughter and he too developed a cold recently. However, no matter what we do, he shrieks every time I use the bulb syringe on him. He absolutely hates the suction. He starts the screaming the moment we give him a few saline drops (its a sign that the sucking will be forthcoming) and doesn't stop until we finish and pick him up. It is one of the worst experiences of parenthood, hands down.

Up here in Maine we fondly refer to this item as the boogah-suckah. I found them really helpful with my wee one and kept one in every room.

Boogah-Suckah Tip: Most hospitals will hand them out like candy in the bank drive-through (they just throw them away after use for sanitary reasons). So while you are still in the hospital after your little pooper is born, ask your nurses for them early and often; then you'll always have one handy when you need one.

Ok we have one of these things but the ones here in Germany (or at least the one we were given) is way too big for our son (born November 2004) so my wife uses cotton rolled tight and dampened with a little water. Seems to work although the boy isn't happy with it at all.

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