I found a great deal online (thank you Amazon Prime) for a great baby doll. This one is called Baby Alive Super Snackin' Luke and is 50% off right now! They do offer three skin tones and girls as well. The beauty of this doll is that it was made for feeding practice, which allows some great modeling and play. Right now my almost two year old tubie loves to find a nuk for both him and his baby. There is also an opening for the food to fall through which lets you check to see how the button inflates and operates from the inside.
Here's what you'll get for $10.99! Baby Luke, outfit, diaper, two tubs of playdoh, playdoh food molds, bowl, and spoon. Check it out:
1. Lay out all of your supplies for a typical g tube button change. Hopefully you have a clean but used button or an extra laying around. Use everything included in the button kit (you can skip on the lubricant to keep the doll clean).
2. Then find a drill and bit that matches the width of the button your child is using. You'll want the fit to be tight so that it takes some pressure to get in (typical of a real life button change). Be sure the drill goes through into the open channel on the inside of the doll. This is probably a bit more centered than an actual g tube button placement. *Be sure to complete this step away from the eyes of a kiddo. Yikes!*
3. Show your caregiver how to check the balloon and measure the water. This is a great way to gain confidence and get to know the button as a whole instead of just seeing it on a tummy.
4. Insert the button using the stabilizer. Be sure to note the need for lubricant in real life and why that's important to ease the insertion.
5. Fill the balloon and remove stabilizer.
Allow your caregiver to try this a few times and learn the ins and outs of the g tube button.
This was also a great benefit for my 4 year old. It was the first time he realized that there was a balloon inside Arlo's tummy. It helps him learn why it's important to be careful while they play. He understands what his brother's g tube button is all about now and feels more than comfortable around him and his tubie!