IV Therapy: What You Need to Know

IV Therapy: What You Need to Know
Medically Reviewed
May 5, 2022

The idea that IV drip therapy treatments – also known as intravenous therapy – can only be administered in the hospital is, well, so yesterday! Today, health-conscious people can easily reap the benefits of IV vitamin therapy in the comfort of their provider’s office – or sometimes in their own homes. But even though the treatment’s been around for decades, IV therapy with vitamins is still brand new to some people.

If you’re one of those people, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! And if you’re one of those people who aims to have a healthy immune system, this article will cover everything you need to know about IV vitamin therapy and more!

What is IV Therapy?

What’s in an IV Bag?

Why Get IV   Vitamin Therapy

IV Therapy: a Quick History Lesson

Benefits of IV Therapy

Uses of IV Vitamin Therapy

Where to Get IV Therapy

Risks Associated With IV Therapy

More IV Vitamin Therapy FAQs

What is IV Therapy?

IV therapy is one of those terms that gets thrown around – everyone’s expected to know what it means. However, if you’re unsure of what IV therapy is, don’t worry. That’s what we’re here for! Let’s break the term IV Therapy down to its simplest form.

IV stands for intravenous. Intravenous means “administered through the veins .” An IV drip usually consists of an IV bag, a hollow needle, and a long tube that leads from the bag to the needle.

The therapy part refers to what the bag administers into the veins. In the case of IV vitamin therapy, the bag delivers fluid that contains vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients directly into your bloodstream. In addition, when it’s for medical IV treatment, the fluid may also contain medication.

Now that we’ve cleared that up, you may be wondering how the IV fluid gets into your veins. A nurse or other practitioner inserts the hollow needle into a vein – usually in your arm. The IV vitamin treatment fluids drip from the bag down into the tube, through the needle, and into your vein. Easy!

What’s in an IV Bag?

IV BagWhat an IV bag contains depends on what the patient needs. As we said, this might include medication. However, the bag usually contains a base fluid of saline, plus nutrients like:

  • dextrose
  • calcium chloride
  • potassium chloride
  • sodium chloride
  • sodium lactate
  • B-vitamins (vitamins B-1, B-2, B-3, B-5, B-6, B-9, and B-12)
  • vitamin C
  • calcium
  • magnesium
  • antioxidants
  • glutathione
  • antibiotics
  • NAD+

Why Get IV Vitamin Therapy?

Vitamins with IV TherapyThe reason to choose IV over oral vitamin supplements is that the vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients then go directly into your bloodstream. This means your body can absorb them more easily. You can also receive higher doses than you would if you took your vitamins by mouth. But more on that later (see benefits).

IV Therapy: a Quick History Lesson

Before we move on, let’s address the legitimacy of IV vitamin therapy.

If you’ve been following IV therapy in the media, you may be asking yourself if IV vitamin treatment really does everything they claim. What you may not realize, however, is that IV vitamin therapy has been around for a long time.

IV drips have been used since the Middle Ages. Over the centuries, these crude forms of IV drips evolved into what they are today. Doctors and hospitals have used IV drips since the 19th century to control the pace and amount of medication delivered – especially to patients who can’t consume oral medications.

In the 1970s, Dr. John Myers developed and administered the first IV vitamin drips to treat his patients. The Myers’ cocktail began as a 10ml injection push of vitamin C, B vitamins, calcium, and magnesium in a base of sterile water.

Early on, it became evident that the Myers’ cocktail was (and still is) a very effective treatment to boost the immune system, prevent colds and flu, and speed up recovery.

Over the years, therefore, scientists have developed other IV vitamin therapies to:

  • Promote faster weight loss
  • Cure hangover symptoms
  • Treat certain nutrient deficiencies
  • Cleanse and detox your body of toxins and free radicals
  • Increase your energy levels
  • Promote better cardiovascular health
  • Ease anxiety and promote relaxation

That’s an impressive range of options you have! And now you’re feeling more confident about the legitimacy of IV vitamin therapy, we’ll dig into the benefits of IV therapy a little more.

What are the Benefits of IV Therapy?

benefits of IV Vitamin therapyBefore we talk about what IV vitamin therapy is particularly useful for, let’s look at why IV therapy would be a more beneficial and effective treatment than other options.

There are five primary reasons that people choose to use IV therapy.

1. 100% Bioavailability

Don’t be overwhelmed by the word bioavailability. It just means that 100% of the nutrients in your IV bag go directly into your bloodstream.

That’s important because the IV vitamin treatment works quickly, and you get the most benefit from the nutrients delivered. You may not realize it, but when you eat or drink something, or you take oral vitamins and supplements, that substance has to go all the way through your digestive system before your body absorbs anything. A lot of the nutrients are lost in the process.

Moreover, if you have an unhealthy gut, then you’ll be less able to absorb even more of them. Micronutrients, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and other supplements delivered by an IV drip completely bypass the digestive process, which means your body gets the maximum benefit.

2. 100% Customization

IV therapy is 100% customizable. That means your provider can create a custom cocktail full of the nutrients your body needs.

For example, suppose your previously healthy immune system is compromised. In that case, your provider can start with a Myer’s cocktail and boost it with some additional Vitamin C and other nutrients that would improve your immunity, rehydrate you, and promote total wellness. Add-ins can also address symptoms like nausea, allergies, and pain.

3. 100% Hydration

hydrationYour body is 60% water, so you need to stay hydrated. But it’s not always easy to get enough fluids into your daily routine, especially if you sweat frequently.

If you’re already sick, have a hormone imbalance, or have a chronic illness, one of your symptoms may be dehydration.

When you receive an IV therapy treatment, you benefit from some serious hydration because it’s delivered in a base of saline solution. Saline solution is an isotonic solution. This means it has the same density as normal blood and contains the same amounts of sodium and chloride ions as normal blood.

The result is that it doesn’t affect your electrolyte balance. That’s why doctors use it in clinical settings to hydrate patients.

4. Immediate Results

Did you know it can take up to two days for your body to fully absorb food and deliver nutrients to you? If you want to feel better now or need peak performance levels now, then two days is too long to wait! The effects of IV therapy are rapid. Many people immediately feel more energetic and more hydrated when they undergo IV therapy.

5. Totally Convenient

The beauty of IV therapy is that it’s totally convenient. If you don’t feel well or you’re prepping for an event, you don’t want to have to head to the hospital or a doctor’s office to get IV therapy. And you don’t have to!

You can get it at various places, including your own home, office, or hotel (more on that later). All you have to do is make an appointment, answer some questions, hold out your arm, and sit still for 20-30minutes.

The Uses of IV Vitamin Therapy

Because it’s fully customizable, there are many reasons a patient might need IV therapy. Conditions that have positively responded to IV therapy include:

  • muscle spasms
  • headaches
  • migraines
  • chronic fatigue syndrome
  • brain fog
  • pain
  • nausea
  • body aches
  • morning sickness
  • allergies
  • sinus and respiratory tract infections
  • fibromyalgia
  • angina
  • hyperthyroidism

People also use IV therapy for quick rehydration after intense sporting events, as a hangover cure, to improve skin clarity, and prevent illness.

Where Can You Get IV Therapy?

Where to get IV vitamin therapyRemember we were talking about how convenient IV therapy is? That’s because you can find IV therapy in many different settings.

Hospitals: IV treatment at a hospital is usually medically based and administered in addition to some other kind of treatment to patients who’re there for an emergency or as an in-patient.

Urgent care centers: Urgent care centers are also set up to administer IV drips for people experiencing a minor emergency.

Health and Wellness Centers: These centers frequently offer a menu of IV vitamin therapies to supplement their patients’ care.

Medical spas: Since medical spas (med spas) are a mix of spa and medical clinic, it’s not uncommon to find one that offers IV vitamin drips alongside other spa and aesthetic treatments.

IV bars: IV bars and IV lounges are not affiliated with a doctor or hospital. They can be in a fixed location or run as a mobile business.

At home, office, or hotel: Instead of traveling to get your IV therapy, you can have a concierge service come to you. They’ll send a nurse to your location to administer the IV therapy.

No matter which option you choose, it’s crucial you get IV therapy from a reputable source – preferably with a reputable doctor in attendance – who will provide the IV infusion and monitor the administration.

Be aware that clinics, IV bars, and IV lounges are not highly regulated. Do your research in advance. Make sure the doctor or nurse holds certification.

If you go to a clinic, check it for cleanliness and don’t let them rush you. You can also ask to see documents if you’re concerned about qualifications!

Risks Associated With IV Therapy

risks of therapyIV therapies come with minimal risk. The top three concerns are:

1. A small risk of infection

An IV creates a direct path to your bloodstream, bypassing your body’s best defense mechanism against bacteria: your skin. However, this risk significantly decreases when a licensed medical professional performs the IV.

2. Too much of a good thing

Some vitamins and minerals have their healthy upper limits. If you receive too much of these, the risk of adverse effects increases. In addition, even if the vitamin or mineral has no toxic effects under normal conditions, too much of them could cause problems if you have a medical condition that reacts badly to them.

3. Blood clots and vein irritation/inflammation

Sometimes intravenous treatments can flood your veins if they drip too quickly – or cause a stroke if an air bubble travels into the veins. Once again, that’s why it’s imperative you go to a reputable clinic, who has a doctor overseeing the IV treatment.

More IV Vitamin Therapy FAQs

We’ll finish off this extensive article on IV vitamin treatment with a few of the most common questions that patients ask us about IV therapy.

Is IV Therapy Good for Detoxing and Revitalizing?

Yes! For example, we offer an IV Detox that’s formulated with the antioxidant glutathione to help cleanse your liver and help you detox. We also offer IV Total Rejuvenation, which is loaded with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are known for their rejuvenating properties.

Does IV Therapy Help With Immunity?

boost immunityYes! We’ve even developed an IV cocktail that goes beyond Myer’s Cocktail. It’s called IV Immunity. Not only does it boost your immune system. It facilitates the removal of toxins.

How Does IV Therapy Help With Total Rejuvenation and Total Wellness?

Intravenous nutrient therapy delivers vital vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, amino acids, and other micronutrients directly to the bloodstream. This allows the potent nutrients to nourish, replenish, and heal your body at the cellular level – and restore your immune system to balance.

Does IV Therapy Help With Aging?

It can! For example, our NAD IV Therapy restores cellular levels of NAD+ to keep cells young and resilient.

How Often Should I Get IV Vitamin Therapy?

How often depends on what your needs are. It’s best if you discuss this with the nurse or doctor who administers your IV. It’s not uncommon for people to set up routine weekly or monthly IV therapy treatments. Women suffering from morning sickness may also have IV therapy daily until the symptoms pass.

How Long Does IV Therapy Take?

how long therapy takesIt takes about 20-60 minutes for an IV bag to fully empty into your bloodstream. The actual time taken will depend on what’s in the bag and the rate at which your provider determines that it needs to flow.

How Long Do the Effects of IV Therapy Last?

This depends on many factors, such as your body’s metabolic rate. However, you can expect results to last up to a few days.

Are You Ready to Feel 100%?

Your journey to wellness starts with you! Our team at Nava Health is here to support you with the best care, guidance, and tools to get you back to your 100%! Contact us for a consultation today!

Article Name
IV Therapy: What You Need to Know
From what it is to what's in the bag, how long it lasts, and everything in between, we cover all the details of IV vitamin therapy that you need to know up front, including benefits and risks.