When you become a mom for the first time, you will find yourself in need of a lot of things nobody told you about. This ultimate new mother checklist is a perfect way to prepare in advance. Not only will you find great items on this list you expect, but a few of our favorites that you may not have realized you needed until you were caught without it!
With my first baby, I wanted to be prepared, but ended up buying more baby gear than necessary. After bringing my daughter home, I found myself without several essential items throughout the newborn months. There are basics I left off of this checklist such as a carseat, hygiene supplies, and diapers, since most new parents know those are must-have items.
Ultimate New Mother Checklist
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I am breaking down the new mother checklist by what would be needed for mom and for baby. This helps you to prepare for your own needs, as well as the baby when they come home.
New Mom Needs:
- Nursing Pillow. The Boppy is a popular option that most love. I tried many breastfeeding pillows and found My Breastfriend to be my favorite.
- Leading Lady Nursing Bras. You may prefer a different brand of breastfeeding bras, but this is a great choice for full-figured moms as they have a variety of larger sizes.
- Fruit Infusion Water Bottle. You will definitely need to stay well-hydrated. If you have a tough time drinking water, a fruit infusion bottle is great.
- Loose nursing gowns or tops. I love a nice loose nursing gown for the first few days or week after having a baby, but nice loose tunics or nursing camisoles that act as a bralette are great for wearing in those early weeks when your baby wants to eat every hour on the hour.
- Nursing pads. You will likely find that you leak between feedings, and nursing pads are a must to keep your laundry to a minimum.
- Lanolin cream. Chapped nipples are a real frustration and can cause breastfeeding pain. Using lanolin cream helps a ton.
- Medicated wipes for hemorrhoids. Nobody likes to talk about this, but during the birthing process, hemorrhoids are often a problem. Post birth, you will probably have pain in this area as well, so having medicated wipes or Tucks pads on hand is a great idea. I also found this bottom balm to be incredibly soothing.
- Pads and pantyliners. Post birth you will be bleeding for a few weeks. Postpartum bleeding will be heavier than a regular period, so you'll need plenty of heavy pads on hand. Tampons will be a no, so pads are a must. Pantyliners will be good to have on hand for the last few days or week of this post-birth bleeding. Expect to bleed anywhere from 2-4 weeks depending on your body. Make sure to ask your doctor about what to expect if you are concerned.
- Loose underwear. You want to have loose comfortable underwear that you don't mind seeing get stained. I suggest investing in a package of regular briefs.
- Loose pants a size up from pre-pregnancy. You will want to wear something nicer soon, but may not fit into your pre-pregnancy clothing. A nice pair of fun leggings or loose palazzo pants is a great dressier item that can be comfortable on a still swollen tummy.
- Meals prepared in advance. Whether you make your own freezer meals or you just prepare with gift cards and menus on hand, this is going to be a must.
- Sleep mask. One hard part about getting sleep in the daytime while the baby sleeps is the daylight coming through windows. A sleep mask is perfect for mid-day naps.
New Baby Needs:
- Gowns and sleepers. While you may have a thousand outfits ready in their clothing stash, the first few weeks you will likely stay at home. Baby gowns and sleepers that make it easy to change diapers and clean them up are a great asset.
- Bassinet. Even if you co-sleep with your baby, a portable bassinet is a great addition to moving your baby around the house easily as you do housework or spend time as a family.
- Swaddler. Using a swaddler has gained popularity in recent years and makes it easy for a novice mom to properly swaddle a baby in the first few weeks. It's definitely easier to help them settle for sleep in many cases.
- Baby Carrier. There are several different ways to wear your baby and you may need to experiment to find what works best for you. I found babywearing to be a must to keep my babies content while I was hands-free to get a few things done around the house.
- Wipes. You already have these on your list, but you can truly never have enough.
- Baby first aid kit. While you don't want your child to be sick, there is nothing worse than a baby waking up with a fever and having nothing on hand. Invest in a small baby first aid kit that includes a rectal thermometer, pain reliever, and saline nasal spray as well as nasal aspirator. Ask your doctor for suggestions, and make sure you know the recommended dosage if you need to use as baby weight is taken into consideration.
- Nail file or baby clippers. Babies are often born with super long nails that can easily scratch their faces. Using a nail file is safest to trim these down without fear of cutting their fingers.
- Womb Sounds Machine. This is a great addition to a nursery. They can easily be strapped onto the side of the crib or bassinet or placed nearby on a dresser or changing table. The soothing womb sounds can help settle baby to sleep at nap and bedtime.
- Baby monitor. Whether you use a video monitor or a traditional sound only monitor, this is a must if your baby is going to be in another room at any time.
- Extra bottles or pacifier. Even if you are breastfeeding, it's a good idea to have a bottle or pacifier on hand just in case you need someone else to feed your baby. The pacifier is a controversial subject that many love using and others prefer to avoid. Choose what is best for your family.
Get ready for your new baby with items on this ultimate new mother checklist. Tons of great items you and your baby can use in the early newborn days. Also, don't forget to ask your friends and family for their recommendations before compiling your list.
Would you add anything else to this list? Let us know in the comments!