How should your child use an MDI with spacer and mask?

Giving asthma medicine should be a positive time for you and your child. Using a mask with MDI and spacer is recommended for effective delivery of medicine into your child’s lung. Follow the directions from your child’s therapist, nurse or doctor closely. Below are the step by step instructions on correct use of metered dose inhaler with a spacer and mask:

  1. Wash your hands well.
  2. Have your child sit up straight or stand to use the MDI.
  3. Remove the cap from the inhaler.
  4. Shake the inhaler well before using it each time. If it is a new inhaler or has not been used in several days, follow the manufacturer's instructions for priming the inhaler.
  5. Attach the inhaler to the spacer.
  6. Cover your child’s mouth and nose with the mask. If your child fights the mask,have another person gently hold his arms.
  7. Press the inhaler spraying the medicine into the spacer.
  8. Keep the mask in place until your child takes 6 or 7 deep breaths. If counting breaths is a problem, slowly count to 10. The number of breaths needed to remove all the medicine can vary based on the size of the child. Small babies may need to take 6 to 10 breaths to empty the spacer.
  9. Remove the mask.
  10. If your child’s doctor has told you to give more than 1 puff, wait at least one minute between puffs. Shake the MDI before each puff and repeat steps 6 – 9.

Watch instructions video here

How should you clean the spacer and mask?

  • Rinse the spacer and mask as needed with warm, running water. Clean them once a week with warm water and soap. Allow the spacer and mask to air dry between uses.

  • Do not clean or dry the inside of the spacer with a cloth or fabric. This can create an electric charge on the inside of the spacer.Which will decrease the amount of medicine that goes to your child’s lungs.

  • Once a week, rinse the mouthpiece (boot) that holds the canister with warm running water. Do not soak it. When placing the canister back into the dried boot, prime it with 1 puff.

  • See the manufacturer’s instructions for more information.