When the time comes to bring your newborn home, you might want everything to be perfect, but it is more important to make sure you have a nice comforting environment for your baby. In the early days of your baby’s life there will be three things your baby will do; sleep, eat, and poop, not always in that order. Focusing on getting ready for these three things will give you a great start to creating a loving home for your baby. Stressed out parents aren’t great for newborns, so enjoy getting ready for your little one and don’t worry about all the small details. There will always be a few essentials that you need, but once you have that down, everything else is about preference and making life a little easier.
Set up a safe space for your baby to sleep in with a firm mattress and a tight sheet that won’t come loose while your baby is sleeping. Stay away from baby bumpers, pillows, stuffed animals, and blankets in the bed and always lay your baby on their back. What you don’t need to worry about is making sure the room is completely dark or quiet. One of the best ways to get your baby comfortable sleeping is to get them used to a little light and noise. Some moms have even vacuumed when their baby is asleep to help their baby learn that they can sleep through regular household noise. Helping your baby to learn how to sleep even if it isn’t perfectly dark or quiet, will make sleep time easier and much more comfortable for your baby. If you want to add a mobile to entertain your baby while they get drowsy, or for when they first wake up, look for bold patters with bright colors, because that is what your baby will be able to see in the first few months.
Feeding your child is as much about your comfort as your baby’s. Make sure you have a nice comfortable place to sit, preferably with an ottoman or other way to elevate your feet. You may want a pillow or Boppy to support the baby while you are feeding. It can be helpful to have a table near your chair so you can have water, tissues or anything else you need nearby while feeding your baby. You will also want to keep a towel or two for burping and spit-up within reach. If you are nursing, a tube of Lansinoh is great for your comfort and your babies, as it will make nursing more comfortable and prevent chapping. You can start conditioning your nipples before your little one has arrived by massaging a little Lansinoh into your nipples in the last trimester of pregnancy.
No one really enjoys diaper duty, but make it as easy as possible by creating a safe and convenient place for regular changes. You really just need a hard surface that your baby cannot roll off of with all of your diaper changing supplies in reach. Some parents add a baby wipe warmer to make diaper changes more comfortable and a Diaper Genie to make it less smelly. Keep clean up supplies handy because there will be messy diaper leaks, but being prepared will make it much less of a hassle. Since sometimes leaky diapers can soil onesies and clothes, always have a change of clothes for your little one in your diaper changing area.
Beyond The Basics
Once you have the basics taken care of you might want to think about improving the environment for both of you with an air purifier. Allergens, smoke, pet dander and other irritants can be bad for your little one, using an air purifier can ensure that the air your child breathes is as comfortable as the home you are creating. The right air purifier will even get rid of bad odors, like those you get from dirty diapers. There are lots of air purifier models that are designed for the nursery, but you don’t need a specialized unit to get the best air purifier for a baby room.
You will want to make sure that your air purifier has a true HEPA filter to remove particles and allergens from the air as well as a carbon filter to remove smells and chemicals from the air. You can also chose models that use UV light or other mechanisms to kill viruses and other airborne germs, but unless your child has a compromised immune system you might want to forgo a unit that removes all germs as experts have found that normal exposure to germs can help build a baby’s immune system and keep them healthier. If in doubt it is always recommended that you speak to your family doctor or pediatrician to help you decide what is best for your baby.