If you’ve ever walked through the aisle of a baby store, or browsed a baby shower list, you’ll immediately notice that his or her first-year baby options can be overwhelming.
But, do you really need all that stuff to be an adequate parent? If you talk to veteran moms and dads most of them will tell you – not really. Why? Because babies grow up FAST in their first year. They outgrow each stage at the speed of light.
I’ve been through it all and want to make your life easier… so I’ve outlined the basics to make your life easier:
Babies need diapers. You can choose cloth or disposable diapers but either way you’ll need a truckload of them.
- Diapers: Most babies outgrow newborn diapers very quickly, so stock up on a mix of newborn and size 1.
- Diaper cream: If you go the cloth diaper route, make sure the cream you pick is compatible with
- Wipes or washcloth: Baby skin is very sensitive, so unscented wipes work the best. Try and use flushable wipes. They’re better for the environment. Washcloths sprayed with water also work well if you want to avoid disposable goods.
- Changing pad: If you’re short on space, skip the changing table and use a changing pad.
- Diaper pail: Although it’s not a necessity, a sealable diaper pail and liner are convenient because dirty diapers get stinky. Use a Wet Bag for soiled cloth diapers and wipes.
Your nursery can be humble or fancy. We guarantee your baby won’t care. Experts actually recommend that your baby share your room (not your bed) for the first 4 to 6 months of his or her life, so keep it simple.
Crib: Choose a crib with fixed side rails.
Firm mattress: To prevent SIDS, your baby should sleep on their back on a firm surface, without any pillows, blankets or toys.
Baby monitor: A baby monitor helps you keep an ear on your little one at all times. Some monitors also keep track of heartbeats, room temperatures, and any other pertinent data that will give you peace of mind
Swaddles and sleep sack: Since blankets are not recommended for newborns in cribs, swaddles are a wonderful alternative. They’ll prevent your baby from rolling over and they might also help babies sleep better. And both swaddles and sleep sacks will keep your baby warm at night.
Below are a list of Feeding supplies you’ll need if you’re planning to breast or formula feed.
- Nursing pillow: Most mothers don’t need nursing pillows. Babies need to be very close to their mothers’ bodies to get a good latch. Unfortunately, nursing pillows often get in the way.
- Breast pump: You might be able to get one free through your health insurance.
- Milk storage bags: This link reveals all you need to know about them.
- Bottles: Even if you’re planning on nursing exclusively, you might need to bottle feed your child if you need a break and leave them with a caretaker or it’s time to go back to work.
- Bottles and nipples: Try a couple of different ones before investing in a whole set. Let your baby be the judge of what they best prefer.
- Formula: Ask your pediatrician which one might be the best fit for you and your baby
- Bottle sterilizer: If you have well water, or for some reason your town/city water isn’t chlorinated, you should use a bottle sterilizer.
Be prepared. Babies require lots of equipment to get around town.
Baby car seat: Get one. You won’t be allowed to leave the hospital without one.
Stroller: Choose one that is compatible with your car seat and matches your lifestyle: Do you live in an urban environment that requires a lightweight, easy-to-maneuver stroller? Are you planning on taking long countryside
Baby carrier: Slings and soft structured front carriers can be a lifesaver in the earlier months. Try different models to see which one will best fit your morphology.
Diaper bag: It’s the best way to keep everything together in one compact space.
Since you’ll probably need these essentials at the least convenient moment, make sure you have them on hand before the baby arrives:
- Baby bathtub: Wait until the umbilical cord falls off before giving your baby a bath.
- Digital thermometer: Rectal thermometers are more accurate for children under the age of 3.
- Bulb nasal aspirator: Babies are prone to colds and aspirators are the only way to keep their nasal passages clear and them comfortable.
- Humidifier: Although useful, remember if they aren’t maintained properly or the humidity levels stay too high, they can actually make your baby sick.
- Baby nail file or clippers: We advise clipping or filing when baby is sleeping.
- Baby Tylenol: It is the only over-the-counter medicine babies younger than 6 months can have. This includes cough medicine and Ibuprofen, but make sure you follow the instructions carefully and don’t overuse.