Motherhood is mentally and physically challenging. For many mums, the first few weeks can be a little overwhelming. That’s why it’s important to plan ahead and create and stock up on what you’ll need to help ease the adjustment to mum life.
Essential items like nursing clothing, nipple creams and baby monitors can help to make the adjustment more comfortable. For those looking for a starting point, we’ve created a list of common items that mums will need in their first few weeks of motherhood.
It is recommended that expecting mothers start buying breastfeeding friendly clothing once they are into the second or third trimester or during the first weeks of breastfeeding to factor in the changes to body shape and breast size. Maternity bras are made to provide comfort to new mothers whose chest and ribcage are expanding. They will include wide straps for additional support to prevent damage to the breast tissue and reduce the chances of getting stretch marks. Nursing bras and clothing provide easy access for nursing babies without compromising comfort.
Regardless if you’re formula-feeding or breastfeeding, you will need plenty of breast pads. These pads will help absorb leakage and prevent wet spots when you’re lactating. You can use disposable pads or reusable ones. Since it’s likely that you’ll be wearing these pads a lot through the early days, it’s important to stock up on them during the first few weeks of motherhood.
For the baby, it’s essential to buy clothing that keeps them warm and comfortable. This might include one-suits, socks and beanies. Mittens will also prevent the baby from inadvertently scratching themselves.
There are few reasons to invest in a breast pump. First, there might be instances where you’ll need to provide milk if you are separated from your child. This might be because of an illness or because you’re needed back at the office. Second, there might be times when you’ll need to extract excess milk. Regardless of your situation, this extracted milk can be stored in the fridge for later consumption.
If you’re planning on getting a breast pump, you’ll have to choose between manual and electric pumps. For certain scenarios, such as when the baby is ill, there are also hospital grade pumps that reduce the risk of the milk coming in contact with germs.
Nursing Pillows and Chairs
For the mother, it’s important to be comfortable when breastfeeding. If you’re not careful, certain postures can lead to neck and back pain. To avoid this, make sure you use a chair with an adjustable height and reclining options. If necessary, you can also use pillows to make your position more comfortable.
A baby monitor will help you keep an eye on your child while you’re doing other things around the house. It will alert you if your baby starts crying or if there are other concerns in the room.
There are different types of monitors. There are audio monitors that let you listen to the noises your baby is making. There are also video monitors that broadcast a live feed to your phone or tablet.
Additionally, there are monitors that help you keep track of the baby’s health. If your child has breathing problems, there are devices that track the baby’s breathing and heart rate. There are also movement monitors that alerts you if the baby hasn’t moved for a period of time.
When it comes to fevers, there are multiple signs that you should look out for. Vomiting, unusual sleepiness and irritability are common signs that something isn’t right. At this stage, you should check your baby’s temperature to confirm if they have a fever.
If your child is under three months of age, you should take them to the hospital as soon as you find out they have a fever. For children between three to twelve months old, see your family doctor as soon as possible.
If it’s your first time breastfeeding, the suction and the pressure might feel uncomfortable. The physical pressure in conjunction with the baby’s saliva will cause your nipple to dry out and sometimes crack. To remedy this, it’s best to use a nipple cream to moisturise the affected area.
It’s worth noting that most nipple creams use lanolin, a wax derived from sheep wool. If you’re a vegan, be sure to check for this ingredient before using a certain product.
This is just a small list of motherhood essentials to help you get started. There are plenty of other helpful items and products that were not mentioned in this post. It helps to plan ahead and do some research on the other products that you might need.
Remember, all mothers are not all the same. Depending on your situation, you might not need some of the common items listed above. It’s best to consider your specific situation and how these items will help you. If you have any concerns or questions about your own or your baby’s health, we recommend consulting with health professionals.