How To Prepare For A Baby: 6 Essential Tips

Man and woman putting crib together to prepare for a baby

 

Whether you’re adopting or pregnant, you’re probably already counting down the days until your little one is in your arms! Preparing to welcome a new baby into your family is exciting, but it can also feel overwhelming — there’s a lot to do before baby comes.

Between stocking up on diapers, choosing a doctor, and making financial preparations, you have many things to think about! If you’re wondering how to prepare for a baby, the Newton Baby experts are here to help with six essential tips.

How To Prepare For A Baby

1) Prepare Financially

One of the first things you’ll need to do (if you haven’t already) is make some financial preparations. Pregnancy, childbirth, and raising a little one involve a good bit of money, so make sure you count the cost and start setting some money aside.

Here are a few ways to make sure your finances are in order before the big day.

Look Over Your Health Insurance

Make sure you know what maternity costs your health insurance covers and what will be out-of-pocket. You also need to understand how to add your new child to your insurance.

Check In With Work

If you’re working, ask your boss about maternity or paternity leave so you know what to expect and how to plan accordingly.

Budget For Baby Costs

Account for the cost of outfitting your little one’s nursery — you’ll need to buy a lot of things! Also, budget for recurring expenses after your baby arrives (think formula, diapers, and childcare).

Create A Baby Registry

This part is fun as well as practical! Your friends and family will want to give you and your baby gifts and make you feel loved. Having a baby registry will let them know what you need and take some of the financial burden off of you.

2) Prepare Medically

Expecting parents meeting with doctor

To care for yourself and your growing baby bump, you’ll need to choose a doctor to see for the duration of your pregnancy. Pick out a doctor you’re comfortable with and schedule your first visit soon after you find out you’re expecting.

Plan for several more prenatal visits throughout your pregnancy. Your doctor will tell you your estimated due date, answer questions, perform ultrasounds, and run tests to check on your and your baby’s health.

Another medical decision you need to make early on is exactly where you’re going to deliver. Do some research and choose a hospital or birthing center that best suits you and your partner.

Obviously, if you’re adopting a baby, you won’t have to make preparations for childbirth. But regardless of how your baby is coming to you, you will need to choose a pediatrician for your baby.

When choosing a pediatrician, consider whether or not you want a group practice, the location of the office, the convenience of their hours, the pediatrician’s credentials and training, and what insurance they accept.

And, of course, you want to be sure that you feel cared for by the doctor — you and your child will be seeing them for years to come!

3) Prepare A Safe Nursery

Creating a special room where your little one will snooze can be one of the most enjoyable parts of preparing for a baby! You get to paint the walls, hang cute curtains, and pick out a comfy rocking chair.

Of course, you want to make the room cozy, inviting, and cute. But safety is another important aspect to consider when outfitting your baby’s nursery.

For the first couple of years of their life, your little one will spend a lot of time sleeping in the crib. Looking out for your baby’s safety during naps and nighttime is called safe sleep and includes:

  • Putting your baby to sleep on their back, not their side or stomach
  • Sharing your room with baby, but not your bed (some people use a bassinet)
  • Using a firm crib mattress that fits correctly inside the crib (not too big and not too small)
  • Keeping blankets, pillows, and toys out of the crib

When deciding on which mattress to purchase, consider a breathable mattress, like Newton Baby’s Crib Mattress. Once your baby learns to roll over by themselves, a breathable mattress will help keep them safe by reducing the risk of suffocation.

Newton Baby's breathable crib mattress

With a Newton Baby mattress, you can rest easy knowing your baby is sleeping safe and sound. Our mattress is also 100% washable from cover to core, which means you can do away with mold, bacteria, and allergens for even more peace of mind.

Plus, the Newton Baby Crib Mattress is comfortable, and the standard size will see your little one well into their toddler days. You can count on years of safe sleep!

3) Prepare Your Home

In addition to preparing the nursery and stocking up on baby supplies, there are a few things you can do to get the rest of your house ready for your new little one.

For example, to make laundry day easier, consider buying extras of items that will get dirty, such as your crib sheet and mattress pad.

Expert tip: No matter what crib mattress you have, you can use a Newton Baby Waterproof Crib Mattress Pad to add a layer of breathability to the mattress and protect it from leaks, moisture, and mold.

Baby in a crib looking up

Once your little one arrives, you won’t have as much time or energy to think about cleaning or grocery shopping. And you’ll probably want to spend every spare minute with your sweet little one (or catching up on sleep!).

Get a head start on those first few weeks with your new baby by filling your fridge and pantry with the basics and doing a deep clean of the house.

And don’t hesitate to hire someone or ask for help when you need it!

4) Prepare Emotionally

Before your baby makes their arrival, your family needs to prepare emotionally to welcome this new one into the world and your home.

If you have other children, help them understand what it will be like to have a new baby in the family. Read books with them about being an older sibling, involve them in setting up the nursery, and explain what their day will look like when mommy goes to the hospital to have the baby.

You also need to prepare yourself! While you can’t possibly be ready for every emotion that parenthood will bring, remember to tackle the days with plenty of grace for yourself.

Realize now that there will be stressful and tiring days — don’t be too hard on yourself when those moments roll around.

Another thing you can do ahead of time is to figure out how to best relax, take care of yourself, and manage your emotions. When the hard moments come, fall back on a few minutes of yoga, deep breathing, or a quick rest on the couch.

Expert tip: Take advantage of the precious moments you have to rest by using Newton Baby’s Weighted Blanket. The weight of this cozy blanket increases serotonin and decreases anxiety levels — just what you need both before and after baby comes!

Parents enjoying time together propped in cozy bed

5) Prepare Relationally

For as much time as you will spend preparing physically and emotionally to be a parent to your little one, you’ll also want to spend time investing in your other relationships.

Make sure you and your partner are supporting one another and communicating well. Preparing relationally can also include spending a fun afternoon with your friends, who will form an important part of your support system once you have a new baby on your hands.

Lastly, before the baby arrives, have honest conversations with friends and family members to discuss who you want to attend the birth and who will be helping with childcare or housekeeping.

Don’t leave the important conversations for the last minute!

6) Prepare For The Birth

Childbirth can be a daunting task, especially if this is your first time around! While you’ll need to be flexible to face whatever your delivery brings, there are ways to prepare yourself ahead of time.

Start a childbirth class early in your pregnancy, learn about the different stages of labor, and ask your doctor lots of questions so you can decide on pain management and create a birth plan.

We also recommend taking a tour of the hospital or birthing center to familiarize yourself with where you’ll be on the big day.

When you get close to your due date, pack your hospital bag and have important phone numbers on hand. You want to be ready to go on a moment’s notice.

Get Ready To Welcome Baby

New parents holding baby in the nursery

Having a baby is a big change, but it’s one of the best kinds of changes! Stay calm and prepare for the adventure one step at a time.

Stock up on the nursery necessities (like a Newton Baby Crib Mattress); make a financial plan; choose your doctors; and prepare your home, heart, and family for your little one. In no time, you’ll be ready and waiting to welcome your new baby into your family!

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