COVID-19: Help For Nonverbal Individuals

With thanks for help from Dr. Elizabeth Spaar, we put together these signs of shortness of breath you may look for in case someone is not able to communicate or is nonspeaking:

Lethargy or unusual tiredness
Panting or loud breathing
Sucking in (retraction) at base of throat while inhaling
Sucking in (retraction) at the ribs, also during inhale
Belly breathing – seeing the stomach extended more than usual on inhale
Stomach muscles tensing while trying to push air out
Longer time to exhale than inhale
Tripod stance (leaning over with hands on knees)
Bluish nail beds or lips
Change of mental status/confusion

If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19 get medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include:

Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
New confusion or inability to arouse
Bluish lips or face

More information can be found at the CDC’s website