Monday, June 25, 2012

Preparing for your Bundle of Joy

Finding out that you are going to be a parent can be the most exciting and the scariest moment of a person’s life. For many first-time parents, preparing for a newborn may seem overwhelming. If you find yourself in this situation, fear not! Here is some basic advice to help prospective parents prepare for their new addition.

Below is a very basic list of products you will need to care for your newborn. These are just a few of the bare necessities and by no means represent everything you will need.

  • Bedding: In addition to a crib or bassinet, don’t forget a mattress and sheets! 
  • Feeding: Nursing bras, bottles, formula, and breast pumps are just a few items you may need. 
  • Changing: Diapers are obvious but don’t forget about wipes, ointment, and baby powder. 
  • Travel: You will need a car seat as well as a stroller and diaper bag. 
Baby prep classes are a great resource for first-time parents. They offer quality instruction from experts, as well as a place to meet other parents who are going through the same things you are. Meritus Health offers a number of baby prep classes including classes dedicated solely to newborn care, breastfeeding, car seat safety, breathing and relaxation, and teen pregnancy. If you are interested in any of these classes you can call 301.790.8907 for more information or to register.

Make sure to ask your employer about policies regarding maternal and/or paternal leave. It is also a good idea to line up help from family and friends for the first week or so after you come home. Plan to have someone take care of the house and any pets while you are in the hospital.

During the first few years of their lives it is recommended that infants and young children receive a variety of vaccinations. It is important to talk with your pediatrician about the vaccines your child should have and when.

Pets, just like siblings, may act out when your attention and love is suddenly directed toward your new baby. To avoid this problem you can try inviting friends to visit with their children, carry around a baby doll, slowly begin to give your pet less attention, and address any behavioral issues with a trainer before the baby arrives.

CPR training is a must for new parents. Don’t forget to invest in a baby monitor. Also, make sure that all toys are age appropriate before giving them to your child. Educate yourself about the risk factors associated with Sudden Infant Death Syndrome which include smoking while pregnant or smoking near the baby after birth, allowing the baby to sleep on her stomach, co-sleeping (letting your baby sleep in bed with you), and blankets or other soft materials that could block a baby’s airway while she sleeps.

Keep in mind that this information just scratches the surface of what goes into taking care of a newborn. As with just about anything, if you have any questions or concerns about your health or your child’s health, please consult a medical professional.

By: Shawn McNally

No comments:

Post a Comment