Bite sticks

Explorer127

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I was always taught that people who are having seizures should just be left alone to seize, but i find bite sticks on a bunch of ems store websites.....

So, the question is...do you or do you not use the bite stick..I always knew that you're not supposed to, but if you weren't supposed to, why would they sell them?
 

Ridryder911

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Why they sell them? Some idiot bought a lot of them and now are trying to get rid of them. There are enough whackers that buy them. Personally have not seen them for decades, they used to be popular that every EMT would carry in their scissor pouch.

The treatment is attempt to prevent injuries, in other words .. leave them alone and protect them. I have NEVER seen a total lacerated tongue caused by seizures. I have seen fractured teeth, broken dentures caused by poor rescuers placing objects in their mouth.

Some have used a portion of an oral airway for a bite block, but again monitoring the patient.

R/r 911
 

Gbro

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We used the wedge, and about anything (including fingers) we could to help open an airway(clear path around the teeth), but with nasal airways being a basic skill has made it so much easier to manage a clenched jaw.
I would get my hands slapped often as other crew members were uncomfortable with seeing fingers in an airway. I never got bit and never planned on it, but wouldn't hesitate to do every thing i could to maintain an airway. On the rare occasion when i saw someone else stick fingers into a pt's mouth it did bother me. Funny how that works.
 

Ridryder911

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We used the wedge, and about anything (including fingers) we could to help open an airway(clear path around the teeth), but with nasal airways being a basic skill has made it so much easier to manage a clenched jaw.
I would get my hands slapped often as other crew members were uncomfortable with seeing fingers in an airway. I never got bit and never planned on it, but wouldn't hesitate to do every thing i could to maintain an airway. On the rare occasion when i saw someone else stick fingers into a pt's mouth it did bother me. Funny how that works.

Your kidding right? I would do more than slap your hands, I can assure you that would be the last time you responded. Sorry, never used mouth screws, bite sticks/blocks, wallets, spoons, or fingers in the mouth. There is NO NEED IN PLACING ANYTHING INTO A SEIZURE PATIENT's MOUTH! Why cause more obstruction? The jaw clenches and occasionally will have spastic or biting movements. No, it is doubtful they will bite their tongue off and will not swallow their tongue (both are great urban legends). Remember, the tongue is a muscle and yes can be stitched and repaired. No, no one yet has ever swallowed their tongue.. it is attached.
 
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Explorer127

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about putting fingers in the pt's mouth...that's probably not a very good idea...a seizure pt has no control of their muscles, and they can bite your finger off...
 

ffemt8978

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Never put anything in a patient's mouth that you don't want to lose.
 

tydek07

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Very true, very true.
 

Epi-do

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I always knew that you're not supposed to, but if you weren't supposed to, why would they sell them?

To get the peanut butter out of the jar when you realize you left your knife at home?

You could always use them to splint something really small.......you know.....like a finger.......

13.gif
 

mikie

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The only use I've heard for the bite stick is when aiding with administration of oral glucose, in between the cheek & gums

Is this correct?
 

Ridryder911

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The only use I've heard for the bite stick is when aiding with administration of oral glucose, in between the cheek & gums

Is this correct?

Actually a tongue blade can do the same thing for a a lot less expense (free). Bite sticks, used to be commonly used in hospitals for seizure patients.

R/r 911
 

Ops Paramedic

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Dentists also needs work!! (just kidding)

Why they are still being manufactured? Someone is still buying them. There is absolutely no need to stick any form of bite block into the mouth. The patient has paid good money for that seizure, let him have it.

If you mess around the patient's mouth to stick something down, you run at great risk of losing your fingers, and with THAT causing a real obstruction, as Rid mentioned. Should you want to do anything for the patient's airway, just turn him lateral.
 

Topher38

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The only use I've heard for the bite stick is when aiding with administration of oral glucose, in between the cheek & gums

Is this correct?

I was only taught 2 reasons to use a bite stick.

-Oral glucose
-My instructor said we could use it for holding down the tongue when inserting an OPA but Isnt that why we Put it in upside down and rotate 180 degrees?
 

mikie

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-My instructor said we could use it for holding down the tongue when inserting an OPA but Isnt that why we Put it in upside down and rotate 180 degrees?

I was taught similar but just for peds/infants: insert OPA at normal angle and use bite stick to depress the tongue while advancing the OPA.

Adults: 180 degree insertion

Thoughts?
 

Arkymedic

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Why they sell them? Some idiot bought a lot of them and now are trying to get rid of them. There are enough whackers that buy them. Personally have not seen them for decades, they used to be popular that every EMT would carry in their scissor pouch.

The treatment is attempt to prevent injuries, in other words .. leave them alone and protect them. I have NEVER seen a total lacerated tongue caused by seizures. I have seen fractured teeth, broken dentures caused by poor rescuers placing objects in their mouth.

Some have used a portion of an oral airway for a bite block, but again monitoring the patient.

R/r 911

Rid you don't carry them on the trucks there? I thought we had to have 4 for state inspection according to our checkoff sheets?
 

Ridryder911

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I hope not, we just got inspected yesterday. I believe we tell them we use the oral airways..I know we don't have the bite sticks..

R/r 911
 

synchromedic

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New Jersey requires them on all ambulances for inspection.

They work great to break ice on the windshield when your truck cant carry an ice scraper because it can be considered a weapon.
 

BruceD

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They work great to break ice on the windshield when your truck cant carry an ice scraper because it can be considered a weapon.

Holy cow, is this how far we've degraded ourselves, ice scrapers as weapons... geesh
 

tydek07

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New Jersey requires them on all ambulances for inspection.

They work great to break ice on the windshield when your truck cant carry an ice scraper because it can be considered a weapon.


(because it can be considered a weapon), now that is sad. What have things come to?
 

Jon

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Bite sticks are like a lot of other things in EMS... they seemed like a good idea at the time... there was no research that showed they were needed or worked... Same thing with MAST Pants and helicopters :)

Becuase they "seemed like a good idea" lots of places still have them on the required list for stocking rigs... even though they aren't in the protocols anymore. (The left hand doesn't know what the left is doing).

Jon
 
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