Crocheted octopi and preemies go together like peanut butter and jelly or apple pie and ice cream! The unlikely duo of crocheted octopi and preemie babies are gaining attention across the world as hospitals in the United Kingdom are supporting an innovative therapy for the worlds newest members.
A CNN article highlights the colorful, cuddly octopi that are seeming to have a positive affect on the wellbeing of the preemies. Every year, it is estimated that 15 million babies are born too early which places them at risk for very serious breathing problems, feeding difficulties, developmental delays, along with many other possible health issues. A simple request for a crocheted octopus from a father with a preemie daughter Aarhus University Hospital turned into a world wide request for these cuddly octopi. There was no speculation that the octopi would result in improved breathing, more regular heartbeats, or higher levels of oxygen in the blood. An example of an interdisciplinary success story where there is interdisciplinary work all around, but so often unnoticed. The crocheted octopi are uniting art, therapy, and medical care in a comforting way. The octopi’s tentacles are crocheted in a way which resembles the umbilical cord, thus adding another element of similarity to a womb that supports the preemie’s growth and development. Preemies may be small, but they still love to move around and explore their surroundings, limbs, and all the tubes they are connected to. Umbilical like tentacles proved a comforting support to hold onto instead of unintentionally pulling out their tubes.
There has been an overwhelmingly positive response to the octopi and preemie duo. Not only does it create an undeniably adorable picture, the octopi are supporting the growth and development of the preemies. A win, win created by a simple request of a loving father. There is often interdisciplinary work in the medical field, often highly technical innovations. The crocheted octopi is not very technical, but proving itself to be beneficial in ways no one expected.
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