Applying the Nasal Cannula
Make sure you have the right size cannula
Most brands of cannulae come in infant, pediatric, and adult sizes, so select the one that best fits you for your size. The cannula should fit snuggly in your nostril so that it doesn’t come out, but it shouldn’t be so long that goes far back into the nostril. Some brands may have extended sizes, such as small, medium, and large for adults, and premature through pediatric for children, giving you more options. In this case, choose the one that feels the most comfortable when placed in your nostrils.
Attach the end connector to the oxygen source.
At one end of the nasal cannula tube, you’ll see a connector that hooks onto your oxygen tank or converter. Slip the connector over the end of the oxygen line coming from your tank to connect the nasal cannula.
Adjust the amount of oxygen that flows through the tubes.
Your healthcare provider will prescribe a flow rate for you. Turn the knob on the machine so that the dial is set to this exact number every time, and do not change it unless your doctor tells you to.
urn the cannula so the prongs are curved downward
Most cannulae today have curved prongs so they fit more naturally inside the nostrils. Hold the cannula so the prongs are pointing up toward the ceiling and curve down toward you.
Insert the prongs into your nostrils
Place the cannula in as far as it will go. If the cannula is properly connected, you will feel a gentle flow of air. If it’s the proper size, the prongs should sit comfortably in your nostrils.
Lift the tubes and fit them over your ears.
Make sure the tubes that connect the nasal prongs to the oxygen delivery system are fitted snugly over your ears. This will help hold the cannula in place, even if you’re moving around or sleeping.
Move the slider up the tubes to adjust the fit.
The slider is the small piece on the tubes which you can move up and down to tighten or loosen the headset. Push the slider up until it is just under your chin.