National Medical Assistant's Week continues and today's topic is for all of my blogger moms, teachers, and anyone else who works or has contact with children.
In July I took a position in pediatrics. I didn't expect to love it as much as I do. But when I started I had a major learning curve. One important element I needed to learn was pediatric vital signs. Pedatric vitals are VERY different from adults, and my number one question from parents is 'what is normal for my child?'
The tables below feature normal vital signs based on age. Don't forget to pin them for future reference!
The best way to take an infant's pulse is my using the brachial atery (this is called a brachial pulse) or by listening to the heart with a stethoscope and couting the beats (this is called an apical pulse). Count the pulses or beats for one minute to get the heart rate.
You can taken an older child's pulse by using radial atery (this is called a radial pulse).
You can count an infant's respirations by placing your hand on their stomach and counting the rise of their belly for 60 seconds. For an older child, you can watch the rise and fall of the chest for 60 seconds.
Leave blood pressure to the professionals. At-home blood pressure machines can be inaccurate, and there are many elements involved to getting an acurate blood pressure, including the size of the cuff and techniques for different ages. A trained health care professional is your best bet for an accurate blood pressure.
Pediatrics is the branch of medicine that deals with the medical care of infants, children, and adolescents, and the age limit usually ranges from birth up to 18 years of age (in some places until completion of secondary education, and until age 21 in the United States