Today, I am going to post on a different topic. I realized that a stethoscope is an important tool for all nurses. Most of us are aware of its basic use to listen to heart sounds. But you know that if you use the stethoscope properly, then you can perform various functions with it. Know about the various ways to use the stethoscope to offer the best care to your patients.
Use Stethoscope as Your Partner
One thing you need to remember is that you would be using this device for your entire career as a registered nurse. Rather than treating your stethoscope more as a device, just consider it as your companion and partner in use. Before you decide to buy a stethoscope, read the reviews about the best stethoscopes for nurses. This part is very important.
It is essential to ensure that the stethoscope fits properly into your ear. You need to hold it properly. Everyone has its own technique and grip, and it can be really difficult for you to learn till you have better feel of the device.
Wearing your stethoscope around the neck is the only way to keep the device handy. It allows you to get perfect position while diagnosing when you wear it around the neck. Such issues are ideal for handling when you are practising. Even you must pick the right position of the device on your body how you will use it.
The Design of Stethoscope
The stethoscope comprises of three major parts. It has the Chestpiece, bell, and a diaphragm. There is tubing that runs up to ears and earpieces that can hear what is coming out from the device. The bell and diaphragm are extremely sensitive parts. They pick heartbeat sounds with ease, and this will help you hear the sound more easily.
Every stethoscope offers you to allow hearing sounds, and you can tap Chestpiece and still listen to sounds. The tubes are prepared with heavy rubber that is easy to move around while you move the device.
Getting Earpieces into Your Ears
It is extremely important to get earpieces properly into the ears. It is the only way to listen to sounds adequately. To make sure that you listen to sounds properly, you need to fit the earpieces well into the ears. Make sure that earpieces fit snugly and hold a good seal to obstruct the ambient noise. In some stethoscopes, you can tilt the earpieces in order to have a better fit. It is essential to keep the earpieces close to your head. If the earpieces are too tight or loose, then readjust them.
Using the Diaphragm and Bell
The diaphragm is the vibrating part that transmits sound to the earpieces through the stethoscope’s tubing. It is the sealed membrane that vibrates the same way as our eardrum. When the diaphragm moves, the air column within the stethoscope also moves. This moves the air in and out of ear canal so that you can hear the sound.
The surface area of the diaphragm is bigger than the air column, and hence the sound moves to the earpieces without any obstruction. With the diaphragm, it is possible to listen to high-frequency sounds. You can place it on the patient’s body in order to listen to the required sound.
If you wish to use the bell to listen to low-frequency sounds, then you can turn the device to use the bell. This is good when you are looking for a sound that is harder to pick up. Some ailments require checking patients for high and low sound.
Various Uses of a Stethoscope
- To Measure Blood Pressure
This is one of the common uses of the stethoscope. You can use the stethoscope’s diaphragm to be sure that you can get to flat part of the device on the upper artery of the chest. You don’t have to place any pressure as the veins are right close to the surface. You need to put the stethoscope on the inner elbow so that you can listen to the pulse movement. You can then let go of the blood pressure bag so that you are able to move to the next step.
- Listening to Heart Sounds
The sounds of a heart are very easy to pick up. The stethoscope helps you understand the sound of a patient’s heart. The stethoscope helps you to identify that whether the heartbeat is normal or not quickly. You can move the stethoscope around the heart in order to check the proper functioning of the valves.
- Listening to Lungs
By placing the device on the back of a patient, it is possible to listen to the lungs sound. The stethoscope allows you to identify any fluid congestion in lungs, which is easy to hear. It allows you to notice and hear how the air comes and leaves the lungs.
- Listening to Bowel Movements
You can easily listen to bowel movements with your stethoscope. It is essential to move the device around various parts of the bowels to check for any blockages. You can listen to various movements in the bowel by moving to the four areas, which are intestines, stomach, and bladder.
Your stethoscope is highly sensitive. It needs to be stored and cleaned every day and after diagnose. It is essential to maintain the effectiveness of stethoscope and to ensure it does not lead to an allergic reaction to you or the patients being diagnosed.