If you’re about to be a parent, perhaps for the first time, there are so many things for you to think about. What are you going to call your baby, what will the birth be like, and is there an instruction manual for these types of things? (Please God say that there is).
Whilst there are probably a lot of other things on your mind, you also need to ensure that you buy some essentials for life post-birth. You don’t want to be in the position where you’re frantically ordering things online, when you should be spending time with your newborn! We’ve put together a simple list for expectant parents.
Whilst you don’t need to go all out right now when it comes to the wardrobe department, having a few baby grows (or sleep suits) to take to the hospital will be a good idea. This is all your baby will need for the first few months, so you don’t need to start buying a lot of clothes right now, just enough to ensure that they are warm and comfortable from the very beginning.
A baby bath
When your newborn arrives, there are so many responsibilities that you now have as parents, and one of them is to bath your baby. This is a great way to bond with him or her, but for obvious reasons you can’t just put your baby in a normal sized bath (unless you’re going in with them). Buy a smaller bath, and make sure that it is completely safe for your child.
A changing mat
This is a shock to the system for any new parent (and learning to change a diaper can take some persistence, and a strong stomach) but you’ll need a changing mat and some liners to ensure that everything is safe and hygienic. You can get these things without breaking the bank, and it is a lot more comfortable for your baby than just changing them without one, so definitely invest!
Your baby’s skin is sensitive, and as you’ll know, you can’t just use normal soaps, shampoos and bubble baths for them. There are plenty of products out there that are designed just for babies, so have a look into what is on the market. Read up about these things all that you can, as there is nothing better than seeing the reviews from other mothers and fathers. Research is key!
Since they were first designed, baby monitors have changed a lot. Not only do they enable you to hear (or see) when your baby is crying or in need of something, but they can now monitor how much your newborn is moving, and they can alert you to any issues regarding stillness or changes in breathing. These things are very useful (and very clever) so look into the best one for your baby.
Bottles (or a breast pump)
When you first give birth, you may have an idea in mind when it comes to how you’re going to feed your baby. If you decide to breastfeed, you may actually find that it causes you some pain, and instead you may choose to move onto formula. Whatever option you choose (and both have their own benefits) ensure that you have some feeding products ready for your due date, as you will need them.
When you start shopping for a crib, you’ll soon realize just how many options there are. You can get cribs that are closer to your bed (and connected to it in some cases) or freestanding ones, so think about what you’d prefer when it comes to these variations. You can also buy cribs that are changeable, which is ideal for when your baby gets a little bit older and no longer sleeps in the cot right beside you.
You’re going to need diapers, for obvious reasons. We don’t really know what else to say here; you need them, you should get them, and that’s about it. Most parents go for disposable diapers, but these will cost you a lot over time, so look into eco-friendly cloth diapers if you’d prefer. Some favor these as they don’t contain any chemicals, and may be better for your newborn’s skin.
A car seat
Wherever you need to take your baby, you have to ensure that you have a safe car seat, so that they are comfortable and secure, and won’t come to any harm. Again, there are a lot of different options out there, and you’ll change your car seat as your baby grows, and can sit up properly. Look into the best choices for newborns, and decide which one would be best for you.
A spray bottle
This is for the Moms out there, because you’re going to need some TLC too. After all, you have (potentially) just pushed out a baby, which is hard work and will require some aftercare for a few months post-birth. Filling a spray bottle with lukewarm water and spraying it onto your lady parts (not into your vagina, though) when you’re peeing will help to relieve any pain that you have after the birth.
Another one for the Moms here. You will need to get some postpartum underwear, to help to keep any stitches protected, and also because you’re not going to feel normal down there for quite a while post-birth. For your comfort and to help you to get on the mend quickly, look into the different options that you have here, as there are many types and styles and it is down to personal preference!
When you bath your baby, you’ll need to use smaller towels until they’re big enough to not be absolutely swamped by the regular size ones. You can get some super cute ones, too (we love the ones with hoods) but the choice again is yours. Find some good towels, that will keep your baby warm and dry and won’t do any damage to their sensitive skin!
A diaper bag
Now that you’re a parent, you have a whole host of things that you need to carry pretty much everywhere. From diapers and wipes, to baby bottles and food, you’ll need a bag to keep all of your stuff together, and the bag needs to be sturdy and convenient. Most of them are over-the-shoulder bags – or backpacks – but there are a wide variety out there depending on the style you’re looking for.
Investing in a mobile to hang above your baby’s cot is a good idea if you want to have something to help you to comfort your newborn, and it also helps them to get off to sleep. You can purchase mobiles with music (such as lullabies) to help soothe your baby, and this will also help them to relax and drift off at night, so look into what options you have for some clever little mobiles.
Blankets and a teddy bear
As a few of us out there will know, sometimes you take your first teddy bear with you throughout your entire life, and you may even keep the first blanket that you had as a newborn. A teddy bear will provide some comfort for your baby, as will a warm blanket, so ensure that you invest in these things before the birth, so that everything is ready for when they arrive.
Babies are pretty good when it comes to being gross, and they will throw up a little bit of food now and again, right down the back of your clean shirt. There isn’t much that you can do about this, but it is a good idea to have some burping cloths on hand for when it happens, either in the diaper bag if you’re out, or on your shoulder if you’re feeding your newborn at home.
If you’re expecting a baby, there are a whole host of things that you’ll be thinking about, from what you should buy, to ‘is this going to hurt?’ You can’t possibly prepare yourself for everything that is going to happen, as parenthood is a massive learning process, and there are some things that you can only really find out from going through these things for yourself. You will be purchasing a lot of stuff as time goes on!
However, having some of these things at hand as soon as your newborn arrives will help you out greatly, especially when you’re not exactly in the mindset for shopping, and you just want to spend some time with your baby. Make sure you’ve got these things sorted, and you’ll be well on your way to having the easiest time possible post-birth, and you and your baby will be in a much more comfortable position as a result.
Good luck with the birth of your first child, and enjoy the beauties (and sometimes the difficulties) that parenthood has to offer. There is nothing quite like it, but equally, there is nothing as rewarding!
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