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Organizing Your Tubie Supplies!

“For every minute spent organizing, an hour is earned.” ~ Benjamin Franklin

Organizing anything can be time consuming. Think of your kitchen pantry, clothes closet, or garage – those are day long projects that take some commitment to get into order. Now think of all your formula, meds, and medical equipment. Are you overwhelmed yet? Do not fear!

Whether getting organized is difficult because you aren’t a spacial/visual person or it just isn’t your cup of tea, it is one thing that you can do now, that will make your future self so happy more efficient!  This post will show you tips, pictures, and ideas with how to store your medical supplies and ensure you know exactly where everything is.  No matter the size of your space, or how much medical supplies you have, this post will help you become inspired to create and organize everything.

I have categorized (dare I say organized) the following organizational tips by:

  • In the Car
  • In the Home
  • Thrifty Ways to Organize
  • Organizing Your Routine

In the Car and on the Go

Even on a short drive, it helps to be prepare for anything and have some extra supplies on hand. One car-friendly way to do that is with a cosmetic bag. The cosmetic bag doubles as an emergency bag for changing any tubes, and keeping spare tubes, saline, gauze, wipes, and other supplies on hand.

Benefits:

  • Super Stylish
  • Affordable
  • Great for any size car
  • Fits around the back of the head rest or on a seat
  • Surprisingly Spacious

org bag 1

 

In the Home: Bins and Baskets and Tubs, Oh My!

Those three words are saving graces for anyone, no matter if you or your child has a feeding tube. By having bins, containers, baskets, or anything else that will organize and hold all of your medical supplies, it helps you stay relaxed if there was any emergency or chaos because you will know exactly where everything is. Image: no rummaging through things to frantically find what you need.

My friend has willingly let me share her crazy detailed organizational bins for all of her tube supplies. Her advice: “always buy more containers than you need!”

org bag 2

Labeling is also a crucial step when it comes to organizing because you want know what is in each basket and for others to be able to navigate it. You don’t need to buy an expensive label maker to be organized. You can simply by labels from any store with office supplies and use a write the content of each container with a bold marker (just make sure it’s easy to read).

 

Thrifty Ways to Organize (and Save $$$)

You do not always need to spend a lot of money to be organized, because organization comes from remaining calm in times or stress or need, and assuring that you and your children are as prepared as possible.

Recently I have come across families using shoe organizers as ways to store their medical supplies, which is amazing to me because in college, I used it to hold all my snacks in my dorm room! The shoe organizer is wide and long enough to hold a vast amount of supplies, takes up little space, and is easy to clean with a Clorox wipe.

The best part about using a shoe organizer is that it is relatively inexpensive, and can be found at your local Walmart or retail store. Many of these organizers also have zippered pouches on the sides so you can store medications or syringes, and can easily be kept out of reach from wandering hands!

org bag 3

Other DIY ways to save money on bins for organization include:

  • Cut the tops off your Amazon and DME delivery boxes
  • Use tissue boxes (square or rectangle ones) for smaller supplies.
  • Find extra tuberware containers in the kitchen (yes we all have “that” cabinet)
  • Plastic 2 oz cups (think what you might get a dipping sauce in for a meal) are great for tiny supplies.

 

Organizing Your Routine

Organizing the space around you can help make life easier but sometime unfortunately sometimes our brains need a little organizing as well.  Simply having a board, chart, or calendar can help manage all of the information that is swirling around in your head and get it in one place. This can provide relief by knowing that all of the important contacts and medical information are all in one place for you and for others that might need the information!

org board

This is great example of a board that anyone can access to see provider names/contact, therapy schedule, DME info, feeds, and medication.

Try a process and see how it work for you and your family. If you don’t like it, try something else.

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No matter how your organize and label your supplies, it’s beneficial to you and your family because it allows you to remain calm in any chaotic situation, or just be able to easily reach and grab a spare tube or syringe at ease! Overstocking of supplies and emergency equipment is important to make sure you always have multiple spares and never run out of supplies in times of need! Feel free to send us your organization tips and tricks, and how you have organized your feeding  supplies.

5 Tube Feed Products that Will Make Your Life Easier!

As time has gone by, the medical field has advanced and accessories for individuals who have feeding tubes have progress in big ways!! These new products have gotten more user-friendly are are great for any age. For the young children who have feeding tubes, companies have created products like backpacks, G-tube covers and pads, and creative ways to ensure that having a feeding tube does not limit any of their imaginations and possibilities!

Some of the products that are featured in this post are:

  • “Glow Green” Feeding Port
  • The Beata Clasp
  • The Tubie Guard
  • “Feeding Friends” Medical Retention Tape Stickers
  • Cloth Line Covers

 

Glow Green:
One of the greatest inventions (in my opinion), is the ability to have something glow in the dark. Even as an adult, I still think glow in the dark things are super cool and fascinating. Apparently so does a company created “Glow Green”, which has glow-in-the-dark feeding port or feed set connector, !

Product Highlights

  • Durable
  • Easy for night time feedings
  • Great for non-balloon buttons
  • For patients of all sizes and ages

Glow

 

The Beata Clasp:
This product is a soft foam clasp that has a universal size to attach to any size hospital bedrail, holding medical tubing, lines, and drains. The clasp is specifically designed to prevent any kinks, dislodging, and entanglement by holding the tubies in place within the grooves!

Product Highlights

  • Compact, Light, and Inexpensive
  • 100% Made from Recycled Products
  • Does NOT occlude IV tubing
  • Does NOT contain any magnetic materials
  • Is durable and washable

bedrails

 

The Tubie Guard:
This product is great for kids who have enteral feeding tube connections because it is a sturdy case that protects the tube from disconnecting. The Tubie Guard’s are versatile so that it fits a variety of different extension tubes and feeding bags!

Product Highlights

  • Comes in a variety of colors
  • Easily customizable based on the feeding bag and feeding tube extension
  • Allows for fewer messes and less money spent
  • Helps reduce the waste of expensive formula and other supplemental nutrition
  • Helps you and your child sleep at ease with no more messes and uncomfortable extension

guard

 

Feeding Friends:
Feeding Friends tube feeding stickers are a wonderful product that helps secure a nasal feeding tube in place. They are fun and colorful, and come in a wide variety of animals and patterns. Each Feeding Friends comes in a roll that is 10 yards long, containing 100 feeding friends stickers, ensuring that the NG & NJ feeding tubes stay in place!

Product Highlights

  • Securely holds NG & NJ feeding tubes
  • Latex Free
  • Ensures the dressing (central line, nasal cannula, etc.) stays in place
  • At least 100 stickers per roll – one purchase lasts a very long time

tubie friends

 

Cloth Line Covers:
These covers go easily over your IV lines and help to keep the med port closed. Similar to the G-button pads, these soft and gentle pads help to make sure that the line does not accidently detach, and allows the lines to be safe and secure. Although many companies have made cloth line covers, crafty parents have made their own with fun fabrics and colors!

Product Highlights

  • Full coverage of the tubing and lining
  • Soft and Durable
  • Ensures that the port is covered
  • Machine Washable

cloth covers

 

Do you have other product that you love? Feel free to share with everyone in the comments below!

Tips for Traveling with a Feeding Tube

Traveling can be a stressful situation for anyone. There are so many variables that are beyond your control, like TSA, flight delays or cancellations, traffic jams, weather, motion sickness, etc. It can be particularly stressful and chaotic when you are traveling with a feeding tube. Although it may seem like the odds are against you when you travel, I have done some research about how to best limit you and your families stress when traveling, whether it be in a car or on a plane. Use these tips to ensuring that your travels are as smooth and peaceful as possible!

The most important thing to do when traveling with a feeding tube is to prepare, prepare, prepare!

Traveling on an Airplane

Flying and going through the airport security can be a little more stressful than driving in a car, but here are some tips that will minimize any chaotic situations that you may come across. Many appointments that you and your child may have to go to will not always near your house, so flying may be your only option, but never fear, airports are not as scary as you may think!

plane travel

Tip 1: Call the Airline BEFORE your Trip

This tip is the most important out of everything, because this is what will make your trip run smoothly when you prepare! While you are packing all of your supplies, as well as all of your child’s medical supplies, you should call the airline, at least 3 business days in advance, to make them aware that you are flying, and ask them what to expect (every airline is different), and ask them what specific policies that they have for children who are traveling with disabilities or medical needs. TSA Cares is also a great resources for TSA policies and they have a hotline that you can call for questions. A TSA Notification Card may help the screening process go more smoothly. Lastly, keep in mind that it is not rude for you to ask the TSA agent to put on a new set of gloves when the start inspecting your medical equipment. The last thing you want is someone else’s germs ruining your trip.

Tip 2: Talk to Your Medical Providers

After your doctor has clear you for flying, ask if they can provide you with a letter of medical necessity. The Oley Foundation has a sample template you can provide your doctor. Next, make sure your home care provider knows you’re traveling and find our if they have a branch in the area you are traveling to. This will be good to know in case of emergencies and might save you from having to pack some supplies/formula. Your Registered Dietitian can help you plan your trip as well!

Tip 3: Pack a Separate Bag of Luggage for Medical Supplies

Many airlines will allow you to have a FREE carry-on of luggage that has only medical supplies but make sure you call them before you assume! Label everything in the bag so TSA will easily be able to identify items they might not be familiar with. It also might help you to have a list on you of everything in the medical supplies bag as well.

Tip 4: Always Pack More than you Need

This is the one tip that I cannot stress enough, and I personally do, ever since I was a kid. I always over pack, which is not necessarily a bad thing, especially when traveling with a feeding tube, or any medical conditions!A good rule of thumb is to have 2 days of medical supplies on your carry on in case there are delays. Below, I have included just a few of the potential things that you could have in your carry on and might need!

  • Creams or Medications
  • Several 60 mL and 10 mL syringes
  • 2-3 feeding bags
  • 1 extension
  • Gauze or Medical Tape
  • Extra feeding tube formula (and cooler if needed)
  • Measuring cups/bottle
  • Water bottles
  • Gloves
  • Clorox Wipes
  • Cath Tip Syringes
  • Batteries or Charger, if using a pump

A Note on Formulas:

  • Frozen or powdered formulas do not count as a liquid.
  • If your traveling within the United States consider shipping your formula ahead of your arrival to your hotel.
  • Shipping formulas across country boarders mighty be a lot of hassle and more expensive than the formula itself. Contact your formula manufacturer to see if you can buy the formula in the country you are traveling to.
  • TSA may open your liquid formulas. Tetra packs can easily be resealed, however cans will need to poured into another container. Opened formula is safe to use if chilled for 24 hours.

Remember, people are flying with feeding tubes everyday to places all over the world. Don’t think you’re in this alone or that you’re tube is preventing you from flying.

Traveling in a Car

Many of the same principles apply when traveling in a car, such as it is important to pack a separate bag of luggage for your child’s medical supplies, as well as pack a cooler to make sure formula is kept cold during the long hours you are on the road. Restock the ice in the cooler at gas stations or restaurants. Make sure your cooler is not stored in the trunk or in a hot or freezing car.

It is always important to have an emergency kit for your car, specifically one full of medical supplies for you child that is not necessarily for long trips. If you don’t already have an emergency kit, or you want to stock up on some potential items you might need, check out our previous posts that have ideas about how to prepare an emergency kit and what to include!

Another key tip to have when traveling in the car is any games or toys that your child can play with while they are riding along. It is easy to forget toys, stuffed animals, and games when you are focused on making sure you have enough medical equipment! To ensure that all of the toys are in one place, and easy to store, I would recommend getting a colorful crate that can sit in the backseat and is easily accessible for toys and games!

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Traveling can be hard, but it is important to stay calm and be prepared, which will help you have a smooth and safe trip! By having the right supplies, tools, and mindset, you and your family will have a great time wherever you go!  Bon Voyage!

Nutrition Breakdown: Iron

Getting the most out of your blenderized tube feed (BTF) recipes is important for individuals with feeding tubes.  Making sure you have all the micro and macronutrients, while avoiding food allergies, plus keeping in mind what you have in the house and what your family likes to eat can become overwhelming for even the pros! The Nutrition Breakdown series is here to help! This series focuses on one micronutrient at a time to help you learn how to incorporate them into you go-to BTF recipes. So today we are diving into Iron!

Iron is a mineral that is found in every living cell in the human body. Iron deficiency, anemia, is estimated to effect 1 billion (yes, that’s billion with a “B”) or more people in the world. So by now hopefully you agree the iron is pretty important. But the great thing about iron is that it is found in a so many types of foods that are readily available and great for all types of lifestyles!

Iron is present in animal products, such as red meat, fish, shellfish, and poultry, as well as plant foods, like spinach, lentils and legumes (beans), tofu, pumpkin seeds, and quinoa. When creating a recipe that is blender friendly, it is important to incorporate a source of iron and protein into the meal, whether it is from animal products or plant sources. My personal favorite food that had iron is dark chocolate!

Fun fact: Iron is absorbed better when it paired with Vitamin C. So add some oranges, strawberries, peppers, kiwi, or any other fruit or vegetable high in Vitamin C to make sure you’re body can absorb what your eating.

Avoid taking the following with your iron sources as they will decrease the amount of iron your body will absorb: 
-Zinc supplements
-Manganese supplements
-Calcium containing supplement
-Antacids

Iron should be consumed daily to help maximize brain function, and stimulate the body so you are ready to start the day! The benefits of iron are crucial for the body at any age because iron plays a large role in the transport and production of red blood cells. Red blood cells help give your body energy and the ability to perform daily tasks. Iron helps to also improve brain function and stimulate brain activity, as well as move oxygen throughout your body, specifically to your muscles.

Below, I have done some experimenting with a few recipes for you to try out. One contains iron from animal sources and the other is plant based.  Feel free to mix and match with fruits and vegetables that are in season and colorful!

Beef & Mango Rice Blend

Beef Mango Blend

 Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of coconut milk
  • ½ cup of prune juice
  • ½ cup cooked quinoa
  • ½ cup cooked brown rice
  • ½ cup of spinach (raw or cooked)
  • ½ cup of kale
  • ½ cup of chopped mango
  • 3 oz. of cooked lean ground beef (96%)
  • 1 tablespoon of protein powder (I used Quest brand, but you can use any brand)
  • 3 tablespoons of safflower oil
  • 2 tablespoons of black strap molasses
  • 1 tablespoon of agave nectar

Blend all the ingredients together until smooth! If you need to make it a little thinner, you can add water or more liquid of your choice to make it the perfect consistency!

**If you do not want to add the lean ground beef, try ground chicken or turkey.**

Nutrition Facts:
Total Volume: 2.25 liters (2250 ml)
Makes about 10 servings – 250 mL per serving

Calories per Serving: 215
Total Fat: 156 grams
Sodium: 84.2 grams
Fiber: 23 grams
Protein: 18.5 grams
Carbohydrates: 48 grams
Iron: 32.6 grams

 ***

Blueberry and Banana Blend

B & B blend

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of cashew milk (you can also use almond milk)
  • ½ cup of cranberry juice
  • 2 cup of whole blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 cup of cooked quinoa
  • ½ cup of banana
  • ½ cup of chopped peaches (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 ½ cups of cooked whole grain brown rice
  • 2 oz. of pumpkin seeds
  • 1 cup of peas (frozen or canned)
  • 2 cups of chopped broccoli
  • 1 tbsp. of protein powder (any brand)
  • 2 tbsp. of agave nectar
  • 1 tbsp. of coconut sugar

Blend all the ingredients together until smooth! If you need to make it a little thinner, you can add water or the liquid if you used canned peas.

Nutrition Facts:
Total Volume: 2.50 liters (2500 ml)
Makes about 10 servings – 225 mL per serving

Calories per Serving: 318
Total Fat: 114 grams
Sodium: 51 grams
Fiber: 48 grams
Protein: 26 grams
Carbohydrates: 32 grams
Iron: 29 grams

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Both of these recipes are great sources of iron, and taste delicious too! They are very versatile and you can easily mix and match the ingredients according to what your family likes and what is in season. I hope you enjoy these recipes, and feel free to send us pictures of what you make!

Feeding Tubes & Emotional Roadblocks

Caring for a child, parent, or another family member that has a feeding tube can be challenging, both physically and mentally. There are many challenges that you will face and many emotional barriers that you will have to overcome, but they are all part of the crazy thing we call life. Many emotional blocks that you will face will not just be at home. They could occur at school, church, or at outing around friends and family. They might be issues with the tube itself, getting enough sleep, or just general added stress.

Every parent deals with all of these road blocks, but it can be hard when you add a feeding tube into the mix because you sometimes have to handle situations a little differently. Although all of these roadblocks might look like huge hurdles that are impossible to get over, they most certainly are not!! In this post, I will be going through just some of the potential challenges that you could face, and the most beneficial ways to get through them.

Tube Feeding at School

Tube feeding in the school cafeteria can be a bit stressful for not only the child, but also for the parent. Parents want everything to go right and according to plan. Unfortunately there will always be hiccups, but you can make sure that everything is planned out and your child has the best possible adults to help him or her through the lunchtime chaos.

 

School TF

The most crucial step for lunchtime are the safety procedures. The school should be informed of the proper handling techniques when helping your child, including:

  • Having clean hands before attaching any tubes or extensions
  • Wear gloves when appropriate
  • Ensuring that tube sites are NOT touched by any other students

Many schools do have policies for feeding tubes, and what to do in case of emergency and who to contact, but it is important to make sure you are aware of their policies. Other steps to ensure that your child has the safest and smoothest possible time both in and out of the classroom include:

  • Writing down instructions for your child’s feeding schedule/routine. Be specific with volumes, periods of time, water flushes, medication, etc.
  • If you are sending in supplies, make sure they are clean and properly labeled for the school nurse or healthcare provider
  • Make sure the food/formula is in a cool ice pack and make sure the healthcare provider knows if it needs to be refrigerated.
  • Talk to the teacher about any potential allergies as well, or any limitations that your child may have, both in and out of the classroom.

These tips will help ensure that you and your child have a stress-free time at school, and be surrounded by healthcare providers that can give you ease that your child is in the best hands possible at school, and that they are happy!

Family and Friends

Family is the most important thing in life, and it is easy for a child with a feeding tube to feel left out, especially if his or her siblings do not have a feeding tube. However, this situation can easily be avoided by making small tweaks in the day-to-day activities that your family does.

  • If your doctor is ok with it, work with a Registered Dietitian to try a Blenderized diet, or Blenderized Tube Feed (BTF). Blending a serving of the family meal for tube feed use can let the whole family enjoy the same meal.
  • If your child or family member is interested in food, let them help with it! Eating foods is only a smart part of our overall interaction with them. Let your loved one help with gardening, grocery shopping, or cooking to stay involved.
  • Meals are an unavoidable part of life, so keep your loved ones involved in them. As kids grow into adults meals will be part of social gathers, work meeting, and holiday. While most people think of meals as a time to refuel, there is more and more grower research about the importance meals have on our society and our long term relationships with foods/nutrition. Kids should learn how meals work and how to hold conversations at the table.

Have you ever gotten a comment at a get together about what you should be doing to get you child to eat? Family and friends sometimes have a way of giving advice when it’s not asked for, or not even appropriate to your situation. In most cases they truly don’t understand the situation and need to be “educated”, as we say in healthcare, on whats going on. Educating a family member or friend on why your loved one can’t eat, or can’t eat enough, and why they have a tube feed can help prevent future issues. Communication is the key to good relationships!

family

How to Deal with Stress

Stress is a natural feeling in general, but can be excessive when you are a new parent dealing with a child who has a feeding tube. When you are stressed, it can be dangerous to not only yourself, but to your child as well because they can see that you are unhappy and that you are dealing with things that they might not understand. Your child might always come first for you, but it is crucial that you do take time for yourself because it can help make you a better caregiver for both your family!

The first step in reducing stress is to take time out of your day for yourself, which can easily be done by taking a bath, finding a quiet place to read a book, taking a nap while your child naps, or even do a little exercise. Many of these stress relievers do not have to cost any money, and can be done in your own home, and can even involve the kids! By taking a short walk, either alone or with the kids, you can reduce the amount of day-to-day stress that you may be feeling, and can help give you some fresh air and easy exercise.

The saying goes, “don’t stress the small stuff”, and it’s true! Many small things can irk you or make you feel like nothing will ever go your way, but it is important to find the positives in everything that you do. The more you let the small things go, and focus on the bigger picture, the happier you become and the less stressed you are! Your children will always look up to you as their role model, so it is important to teach them how to be happy and let the small things in life go. Focus on the happiness that surround you and your family!

Everyday Struggles

The life of a parent or child with a feeding tube can be a struggle, and there will always be challenges that both you and your child will face, both at home and in the public, but it is important to remember that everything happens for a reason, and that each situation that we are put in benefits us in some way, even if we don’t understand why at that particular moment in time.

There will always be difficulties that you face when you have a feeding tube, especially in the early stages when everyone is still trying to figure out what to do, the schedules and routines, and how to make your child the most comfortable. Many companies have started to make products that make your child feel as comfortable as possible, and make this process as easy as possible, especially when they are going to school or with their friends. Products like the G- tube pads, feeding tube backpacks, G-tube wraps and bands, and protective belts all ensure that your child’s stoma and tube are protected and secure, and it can give you relief knowing that your child is comfortable, protected, and happy!

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I hope all of these tips and positive reinforcements have helped relief any stress that you might have about feeding tubes, school and home life, and how to ensure that you and your family are happy and comfortable! This process is not easy, but there are ways to ensure that everything goes as smooth as possible, because there will always be hiccups in every situation, but you just have to look at the positives and see how each bump is a learning situation.

Tube Feeding Accessories 2.0

Every teenager wants to fit in but sometimes it isn’t easy when you have a feeding tube. However, most kids don’t even notice when one of their peers has a feeding tube because of new accessories and supplies that conceal the tube site, while still protecting it. If you read my last blog post about tubie accessories for kids, you probably wouldn’t be all too happy about potentially having a Hello Kitty or Superhero G-tube pad, but there are other supplies are age appropriate!

Many companies have recognized the fact that feeding tubes aren’t just for kids, because many teenagers and adults need them, so they have made G-tube accessories that are easily concealed under any type of clothing and will keep your tube safe! Although they don’t always come in a lot of cool and crazy designs, they do come in a variety of colors and sizes, perfect for every teenager or adult that wants protection and comfort.

G-Tube Wraps

Below is a G-tube wrap made by Gus Gear, which is a company that specializes in making comfortable wraps and G-tube gear that keeps the tubing secure. These wraps are great for kids, teenagers, and adults because they are adjustable and easily concealable underneath a shirt or dress.

Gus Gear uses accurate abdomen measurements to determine the perfect size for you, and these wraps are great for flexibility (especially in gym!) and are soft against the skin. A lot of companies might make similar products, but the blended fabric that Gus Gear makes the wraps from prevents any rashes or irritation to the skin, and easily secures the stoma, providing security and accessibility.

Gtube Wrap

For parents, the best part of these wraps are that they know that your child is growing, so they are expandable, and allow for 2-3 inches of expansion for growth, which is especially helpful when your child is going through puberty and constantly outgrowing clothes! For teens who want to match their wraps to their outfits, these G-tube wraps come in 12 different colors!

 

G-Tube Protective Belts

If you are looking for something a little thinner than the G-tube wrap, the G-tube Protective Belts are a great alternative that still provide the protection and flexibility that you need to move around and also protects your stoma. Many individuals have found ways to make their own from fabric and other materials, but if you aren’t crafty, then companies like Benik are the right way for you to go!

Gtube belt

Unlike the G-tube wraps, the belts have a protective “shell” that covers the stoma site completely, so if you’re more active and are want more protection, these might be better for you. These belts are great for all sizes, from preemies to adults, and you can customize your sizes based on your measurements. The protective belts are suitable for cecostomy tubes, percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy tubes (PEG-tubes), and gastrostomy-jejunostomy tubes (GJ-Tube)!

Ostomy Belts

Along with the G-tube belts, Benik also makes “Ostomy Belts” which are similar, but are attached to neoprene pouches that offer support and holds all equipment in place. Unlike the other belt, this one is specifically designed to be secure over the wafer dressings, and contains a leak-resistant bag as well.

Ostomy Bag

The “Ostomy Belt” also contains the “shell” covering to protect the stoma site as well, and comes in a variety of sizes based on your specific measurements. These belts are perfect for any size, from preemie to adult, so they are universally flexible and comfortable for any situation!

Emergency Feeding Tube Bags

It is important to always be prepared for any situation, and just like you would have a first aid kit, you can have your own emergency G-tube kit. Many people who make the emergency kits use small lunch boxes, small backpacks, or travel bags to have easy access to quick supplies. Because of their small size, you can keep them in their cars, in desk drawers at work, or just around their house where they can easily be accessed.

Below are some important items that you could put in!

  • Latex/Nitrile Gloves
  • Clorox Wipes
  • Spare G-tubes (2)
  • 2 x 2 Split Gauze
  • Spare Extension Tubes
  • Syringes (assorted sizes based on your needs)
  • Extra Bottles of Sterile Water
  • Cath Tip Syringes (assorted sizes)
  • Tylenol or Ibuprofen
  • Scissors

I hope you love all of these cute, affordable, and comfortable accessories that are adaptable for all ages and sizes! If you are feeling super daring and crafty, I encourage you to try and see if you can make your own G-tube belts and wraps, and post pictures and comments below of your creations! Feel free to mix and match any of the emergency kit supplies. Comment below about supplies that you all have in your own G-tube Bags!

DIY Tubie Accessories for Kids!

Having a feeding tube as a child can be super scary, and even adults can be a little worried too, especially with the reoccurring though of how to make sure everything is properly stored, tasty, and that their child is happy. While talking to my friend the other day over coffee, her little girl who has a G-tube ran over to me and proudly lifted up her shirt to show me her “accessories”, aka her G-tube pad, which just happened to be Hello Kitty that day. If you’re unsure of what I’m referring to, G-tube pads are cotton fabric pads that are designed to fit beneath your child’s G-tube, preventing any friction that could arise, and it protects the stoma!

Kids love these pads because they have their favorite superheroes, cartoons, animals, and princesses on them! Below are just several of the pads that my friend has for her daughter!

Gtube pads pile

Now, if you’re like me and instantly took one look at these and thought to yourself, “how in the heck am I going to make these”, don’t be alarmed, because my friend has kindly given me a pattern and detailed instructions so that you guys can use to make all the G-tube pads that you would like!

Along with these super adorable G-tube pads, I have also found some other websites that have supplies for your child, like feeding tube backpacks, which are great to keep their G-tube and feeding bags in while they are playing!

For the winter months, or just the nightly bedtime routine, I have a tutorial for how to make footed pajamas for your child that has pockets perfect for G-tube access. All of these projects are very simple to make, and I am sure your child will love them just as much as you do!

 

How To Make a G-Tube Pad

Supplies:

  • Flannel – cut to approximately 2 ¾ – 3” circles (2 for each pad)
  • Terry Cloth or other absorbent fabric (cotton fleece, hemp, bamboo) and cut to the same measurement as the flannel. (1 for each pad)
  • Snaps or Velcro

**Depending on the age and size of your child, the circles could be bigger!**

Instructions:

Step 1: Lay your flannel circles right side facing up and place the absorbent circles on top.

Step 1

Step 2: Cut a slit through all 3 layers, straight up the middle of the circle about 2”. This may vary depending on the size you are making)

Step 2

Step 3: Stitch the 3 layers together and around the slit you just made. BE SURE to snip the corners of your stitching on the edges of the slit so the pad will lay flat!

Turn the pad right sides out. This can be a finicky process, so take your time!

Step 3

Step 4: Now that it’s turned right side out, it is time to stitch the layers together, so it is recommended that you pin the layers together when trying to sew it.

When you are sewing the outside, you can do a zigzag pattern around the edge to make it seem smoother and more neatly finished.

Once sewn, apply your snaps or Velcro!

Step 4

 

How To Wash the G-Tube Pads

Now that you’ve made all of those cute G-tube pads, the real question is how are you going to clean and store them all! To ensure that these pads have a long lifetime, it is recommended to hand wash them, or wash them on a gentle cycle with cold water.

When storing them, this is how my friend keeps just a few of hers (She has over 30!) This is a super great and genius idea to have them hanging like this so they can dry evenly, and keep them from filing up all of your drawers!

Gtube pads

  

Other G-Tube DIY Activities

If you are feeling adventurous, and want even more goodies for your child, feel free to check out these sources below that teach you how to make your own feeding tube backpacks and footed pajamas for bedtime!

Footed Jammies

DIY Feeding Tube Backpack

If making your own backpack is not your cup of tea, there are many companies that sell these backpacks pre-made, along with other great essential accessories for both you and your family!  Feeding Essentials is a great place to get Feeding Tube backpacks and “Line Tamers” which hold the IV, feeding, and monitoring tubes! Many of these items you can make yourself! I encourage that you step outside the box and see what you can create, and incorporate your whole family into the projects!

Do you have any feeding tube accessories that you or your kids love? Leave a comment below and tell us able!