IV-Accessible Clothing 101: Five Things To Keep In Mind
As a parent, there are many possibilities that you need to be prepared for, whether you’re expecting, you have a newborn, or you have many children already. All our children are perfect in our eyes — sometimes, they just need some extra help.
If your baby is born premature or they have a condition that requires that they go to the hospital, they might get an IV, which can make getting them dressed difficult.
Fortunately, some companies make adaptable clothing for disabled or medically complex babies. When you’re looking for IV-accessible clothing for your baby, you’re probably wondering what features you should look for.
Here’s what you need to know about IV-accessible clothing so you can buy what your newest family member needs:
What Is an IV?
First, let’s take a look at what an IV is:
“IV” can refer to multiple things. It’s short for intravenous, which means “within a vein.”
Doctors use intravenous therapy to provide patients with the nutrients, fluids, medication, or blood they need directly through their veins. That way, whatever the patient needs enters directly into the bloodstream to be dispersed through the body.
What Is IV Equipment?
IV equipment includes four major parts. There’s the IV bag, which contains the necessary fluids, a plastic tube that the fluids flow through, and a needle and a very small plastic tube called a cannula. The needle helps guide the cannula into a vein. Then, the fluids in the IV bag drip into the tube and enter the bloodstream through the cannula.
IV fluids are usually a combination of electrolytes, glucose, and water. Medicine can be added directly to the plastic tubing, which makes administering medication much easier for doctors and patients.
Why Would My Baby Need an IV?
Babies are bundles of joy, and it’s hard to imagine your little one needing an IV. However, there are a few situations that could call for an IV.
If your little one is born premature, they could require an IV until they are able to nurse or drink from a bottle. Another potential reason is if your child is dehydrated due to excessive diarrhea or vomiting. They might need an IV to help them rehydrate.
An IV may also be necessary if an infant has a condition that prevents them from eating or drinking on their own.
Whatever your baby’s needs are, their doctor will figure out the best combination of nutrients and other fluids to keep their tiniest patients healthy.
How To Find IV-Accessible Clothes for Babies
When you’re looking for baby clothes that are IV accessible, a few factors will come into play.
Here are five questions to ask during the shopping process:
Can My Baby Wear Clothing Yet?
The first question you need to ask is whether or not your baby is ready to wear clothes. Depending on how far along you are when your baby is born, their skin may not be completely developed. When this happens, preemies might need to be placed in an isolette that is warm and humid to encourage skin growth.
Since your baby is in a humid environment, clothing will become damp and cold, which can make infants uncomfortable.
Additionally, premature babies may start out with umbilical lines, which are IV lines that are attached to the umbilical cord stumps. If your little one has one of these, they probably aren’t ready to wear clothes yet, especially since the clothing could catch on the IV.
Another factor is whether your baby needs respiratory help or not. If they still need respiratory help, they may not be able to wear clothing quite yet.
The best way to know if your baby is ready for clothing is to talk to their doctors and nurses.
Will the Onesie Fit Around the IV?
The next question you’ll want to ask is if the clothing will fit around the IV line. Finding a suitable outfit will depend on where the IV is placed. Sometimes lines can be placed in your baby’s scalp or feet. If that’s the case, you don’t need to worry as much about if it fits around the IV. It’s more about how to get it on.
Some baby clothes will have flaps that can fit around the IV lines, but there are other options too. Sometimes clothing with shorter sleeves can be simpler. There isn’t the hassle of trying to maneuver long sleeves around your baby’s IV site, and your doctor can advise you on other methods to keep them warm.
How Do I Put the Clothing on My Baby?
With a premature baby or a baby who is medically complex in other ways, it’s important to make sure that the clothes are easy to take on or off. Premature babies tend to be more prone to overstimulation, too, so the less complicated getting dressed is, the better.
The best option is something that you can slip on and off easily, like the Tabeeze Bottom-Up Baby Bodysuit. You can easily slide your baby into it and avoid putting their head through a collar or arms through the sleeves by using the fumble-free snaps at the top instead.
Will My Baby Be Comfortable?
Your baby’s comfort level will depend on how sensitive their skin is. Generally, fabrics that are GOTS Certified Organic tend to be softer and gentler on preemies’ skin. With flat inner seams and an organically printed label (no scratchy tags), onesies can be as gentle to your baby as you are.
It’s also a good idea to avoid frilly clothing. Although it can be absolutely adorable, clothing with extra frills and bows can be uncomfortable. Plus, it can be tricky to get off or on. Frilly clothing is great for pictures, but it isn’t ideal for comfort.
Will the Clothing Snag on the IV?
The final thing to check is whether or not the clothing might catch on the IV. This is another reason why simpler clothing is better.
Being Prepared for Everything
We all want our babies to be healthy, but there’s nothing wrong with being prepared for every possibility. Taking care of our growing children is our first priority, and we want to make sure that they have the best things we can find for them.
Clothing that is accessible for babies with IVs can be helpful for parents with premature babies or children with other medical issues. Before you add anything to your baby registry or click “check out,” it’s essential to know what you’re looking for. By keeping these factors in mind, you should be able to find your adorable baby clothes that are comfortable for them.
IV (Intravenous) Therapy | Nationwide Children's
Preemie Clothes in the NICU | Verywell Family
What does IV mean? What is an IV? How is the IV put in? | Phoenix Children's Hospital
Temperature Control in the Late Preterm Infant Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center