According to the UN, there are 385,000 babies born each day. That equates to more than 140 million babies per year!
Having a baby is undoubtedly a life-changing event. But, before your new baby arrives, there’s a lot that you need to do to prepare. What do you need to do as a new mother?
Check out this checklist for newborns to learn everything new mothers need to have.
Whether you’re breastfeeding or bottle-feeding, there are some essentials you’re going to need. Here’s what you need to stock up on if you’re breastfeeding:
- A breast pump
- Burp cloths
- Nursing bras (Buy your nursing bra in one cup size larger than your pregnant bra size)
- Breast pads (We recommend buying both disposable and washable ones)
- Lotion for sore nipples
You’ll also want to buy storage containers for your breast milk. Keep in mind that once you put your breast milk in the fridge, it can stay there for up to eight days. If you keep it in an insulated cooler, it can last for up to 24 hours.
If you want to freeze your breast milk, freeze it within 24 hours of pumping. To thaw it safely, place it in the fridge overnight. You can also run it under warm water to thaw it.
Here’s what to stock up on if you’re formula feeding:
- Burp cloths
- Thermal bottle carrier
- Bottle and nipple brush
Of course, you’ll also need to buy formula. We recommend speaking with your OBGYN for recommendations. Also, remember to check the expiration date on the formula and check the lot number in case there’s a recall.
Diapering definitely isn’t the most exciting part of having a baby, but the right essentials can make changing diapers a lot easier.
If you’re using reusable cloth diapers, here’s what you need:
- Several dozen cloth diapers
- Changing pad
- At least 8 waterproof covers
- Baby ointment or some other type of barrier cream
- Velcro, snaps, or safety pins to secure the diapers
- Disposable wipes or a few dozen washcloths for cleaning your baby’s bottom
If you plan on using disposable diapers, you’ll also need disposable wipes, barrier cream, and a changing pad. You’ll also need at least two boxes of diapers. Make sure to choose the newborn size.
One of the most fun parts about shopping for your new baby is picking out newborn clothes. Before you go wild and buy every pair of adorable overalls you come across, don’t forget to purchase the essentials, such as:
- At least 8 onesies or undershirts
- At least 5 nightgowns
- At least 5 pairs of pants
- A few one-piece stretchy sleepers
- A few hats
- A few pairs of pants
- 10 pairs of booties or socks,
- A couple of pairs of scratch mittens (these help prevent your baby from scratching their face)
- Dress up outfits (optional)
Also, don’t forget to purchase laundry detergent that’s specially formulated for infants. You’ll also want to buy a few cotton blankets and at least eight receiving blankets.
Newborn babies sleep an average of 8 to 9 hours during the daytime and 8 to 9 hours at night. However, a lot of babies don’t sleep for more than 1 to 2 hours at a time. In fact, most babies don’t start sleeping through the night until they’re three months old.
How well your baby sleeps comes down to luck a lot of the time. However, with the right supplies, you can help your baby sleep better. Here’s what you need in terms of bedtime essentials:
- A crib and crib mattress
- A few waterproof mattress covers
- 4 fitted crib sheets
- A sleep slack
- A few light blankets that fit into the crib
If you plan to co-sleep with your baby, you’ll want to invest in a firm mattress, a light comforter, a sleep slack, a few crib sheets, and a few waterproof pads.
You should plan on giving your newborn a bath a few times a week until they become mobile. Even though babies don’t need to bathe as much as adults, they still need the right bathing supplies to get squeaky clean. Here’s what you’ll need to stock up on:
- A plastic infant tub (you can also use a large dishpan in the sink, or take your baby into the bath with you)
- A dozen washcloths (not the same ones you use for your baby’s bottom)
- Baby cleanser or soap
- A soft-bristled hairbrush
You’ll also want to invest in a few soft-hooded towels.
Other Essentials for Your Baby
In addition to all of the above, here are some other essentials you’ll need for your baby:
- A baby carrier/baby sling (you can check out this site for some great baby carriers)
- A stroller (we recommend choosing one that reclines so your baby can lay flat)
- A car seat
- Baby thermometer
- Nail scissors or clips
- Medication in case your baby gets a fever
- A baby monitor
- Medication spoon or eye dropper
Additionally, here are some items that are nice-to-have, but not absolutely essential:
- Change table (as an alternative, you can just place the change pad on top of the dresser)
- A few pacifiers
- Night lights
- A mobile for above your baby’s crib
- A rocking chair for swaddling and feeding
- A sunshade for your car windows
- Plastic hangers for your baby’s closet
You’ll also want to buy rattles and other baby toys.
Checklist for Newborns: Time to Start Shopping
Now that you’ve read this checklist for newborns, it’s time to start shopping. Pretty soon, you’ll be all ready for your new baby.
Be sure to check back in with our blog for more parenting tips and tricks.