The few months before your baby is born are cherished as your little one grows stronger. The excitement builds as the day you get to meet your new family addition gets closer and closer. But these months can also be stressful; trying to organise all the essentials for when your baby arrives. Many people swear by different things, but other than the few absolute necessities, you will discover what you need and what works for you as the days progress with your baby.
We’ve put together a list of 10 items which no parent can live without - tried and tested by Australian mums.
Having a pram is essential as it allows you to gain some sanity and leave the house while your bub is still very young. They’re also great if you’re having trouble soothing your little one, as you can generally rock your baby easier in a pram than in a cot. Opt for one that is agile enough to move through shopping aisles and park in cafes.
2. Nappies & Wipes
As cute as newborns are, they will need changing a lot. Especially during the early days. Make sure you are fully stocked with newborn nappies that are gentle and won’t irritate their delicate skin. Don’t worry about buying too many because they will inevitably go through them all. If you are hesitant about using supermarket wipes on your baby, try using straight cotton with warm water instead. This is a bit gentler on their skin.
3. Nursing Pillow
Having a pillow that you can use while feeding will save your arms and make your baby much more comfortable. You can also use it to rest your little one on so they don’t roll around too much, and it can be used when they are older for tummy time. Remember, mum can use it while bub isn’t for some extra seated padding during the first few weeks after childbirth.
4. Natural Bath Wash and Baby Oil
Your baby has such delicate skin, which is why it is important to look after it when they are young. Newborns are prone to skin irritations as they get used to everything in the outside world. Using natural baby products will help them through the first few months. Use washes that don’t contain sodium laureth sulfates and soaps (as these can dry their skin easily), and oils that don’t contain petrochemicals or mineral oils (as these can clog their skin). Try Brauer Baby Naturals Massage Oil, and Brauer Baby Naturals Sleepytime Bath for a natural alternative. Remember to not wash your newborn every day, as this can dry their skin out more and they are generally not very dirty.
5. Socks or Booties
Although your baby may have been born in summer, they are prone to getting cold feet. Remember that they’ve been in a very warm space for the past 9 months, so regulating their body temperature takes time. Always have a few pairs handy in case any accidents happen, or you need to double up.
6. Burping Cloth
This is essential as they get used to feeding, and they will be doing a lot of feeding during the first few months. Try setting aside a pack of cloth nappies to use as burping cloths. They are a great size and wash well (which is very helpful!).
7. Sleeping Bag
Unlike the ones you use when you go camping, a baby sleeping bag can be used every night so they don’t wriggle free of their blanket. Again, babies can get cold very easily, and if they are kicking blankets off they can wake up more during sleep.
Sleeping bags are comfortable for babies, and can result in a better sleep for everyone.
8. Muslin Wraps
Muslin wraps are soft, lightweight, and so versatile when you have a baby. Whether used as a summer swaddle, an impromptu pram cover, a breastfeeding cover or a burping cloth, every parent should always have one handy - especially when out of the house.
9. Natural Paw Paw
Again, your baby’s skin can be very prone to irritation within the first few weeks and months. This is especially true when it comes to nappy rash. Leaving nappy rash untreated can result in a painful skin condition, which leaves both bub and parents unhappy. Brauer’s Paw Paw range doesn’t contain petrochemicals, and does contain the healing properties of vitamin E and soothing honey. Mum can also use it to soothe chapped nipples without worrying about bub ingesting petrochemicals.
10. Baby Monitor
Baby monitors are extremely helpful, especially when you’re not used to all the little noises your baby makes. This saves you feeling as though you need to check on them every 5 minutes. It’s also helpful if you are concerned about not waking up to their crying during the night. If this is the case, remember to adjust the volume so you will be able to hear your baby wake up.
Dealing with the diverse and extensive range of parenting issues is not always easy, and what works for you may be different to what works for everyone else. Try not to get overwhelmed with all the information, and remember to make use of your support network to help you get used to the big changes a little one brings to your life.