Having a child that requires a steady IV to stay healthy and strong can be difficult. Most children won't like the idea of dragging a big, ugly medical pole around with them everywhere they go. But, there are a few ways to make needing an IV a little less of a burden and, maybe, even a little more fun.
Decorate the IV Pole
Purchase a pack of colorful sheets of foam, lots of stickers, some foam balls, fancy duct tape and anything else you think your child might enjoy using to decorate his or her IV pole.
- Cut some shapes out of the foam to form your child's favorite things, like flowers, planes, rainbows, animals, cars, or whatever makes your child smile. Stick them to the pole with tape.
- Decorate the foam balls to hang from the top of the IV pole.
- Use stickers to decorate the pole from base to top.
- Wrap the pole with different designs of duct tape to customize the look. Tip: When your child wants to change the type of duct tape that the IV pole is wrapped with, use a straight blade and cut it from top to bottom. Unwrap it and use rubbing alcohol to clean the sticky residue off of the pole.
IV Backpack for Fun Outings
Follow the lead of Kylie Simonds, an 11-year-old cancer survivor who designed a IV backpack to make it easier to get around while hooked up to an IV bag. This young lady used a school assignment to come up with the idea of utilizing a backpack to hold the IV bag and monitors and to run the hoses from the bag to her body without having them get tangled up and caught on things.
IV Pole Bike
Some hospitals have really awesome IV pole bikes that kids can use during their stays. These bikes are built a lot like a tricycle, but have a tall pole that stands straight out of the back. The child's IV bags are hung on the pole and the kids can easily pedal around the hospital to have a little fun.
These bikes can be purchased for you to use with your child at home to make the task much less burdensome.
Talk with your child's doctor to learn if there are any other ideas that he or she has to help your child become more comfortable with the IV pole that follows him or her everywhere. Chances are, a little creativity and some art supplies will be all you need to make your child feel a little better about their tag-a-long friend.