What Baby Gear Do You Need for Your Newborn?
Other Baby Essentials
- Newborn-size pacifier: Some lactation consultants recommend not using a pacifier if you are breastfeeding to prevent nipple confusion in your baby.
- Infant car seat: This can also be used as a baby carrier. You can find stroller frames that the infant car seat can snap into so that you don't have to carry the car seat, which can get heavy, at all times. If you decide to get a stroller that your infant car seat can snap in to, make sure you get one that fits your infant carrier. You can also use a car seat base in the car so that you can easily and safely snap the car seat in.
- Breast pump for breastfeeding moms: Breast pumps allow you to pump milk so that someone else can feed your baby. This is important if you need to leave your baby for a significant amount of time (for example, if you are working). Breast pumps also come in handy when your breasts get engorged and baby is too sleepy to help you out. With a breast pump, you can pump some of the milk out and save it for when baby is ready to eat.
The Baby Medicine Cabinet
Discuss the use of over-the-counter medications or treatments with your doctor.
- Thermometer: There are many types available. Some doctors prefer that you use a rectal thermometer to get the most accurate temperature. A digital, plastic thermometer that you can place under your baby's armpit may be easy for you to use for the first six months. There are also digital pacifier thermometers that can be used. Ear thermometers can be used after age 3 months.
- Calibrated medicine dropper
- Pain reliever/fever reducer medicine: Do not use aspirin! Ask your pediatrician about the proper dose based on your baby’s weight.
- Teething rings to soothe teething gums. Talk with your doctor about using a teething gel since some contain benzocaine. Benzocaine can cause allergic reactions and shouldn't be used in children under age 2.
- Small gauze squares to clean wounds.
- Hydrogen peroxide to clean wounds.
- Wound cream such as Bacitracin Antibiotic or Johnson & Johnson First Aid Cream. Do not use Neosporin on babies under age 6 months. It contains an ingredient, neomycin, which can cause sensitivity in infants.
- Small bandages.
- Cool mist vaporizer. Good for when baby has a cold.
- Pedialyte or Ricelyte to be used as directed by your child's pediatrician for fluid replacement during diarrhea or vomiting.
- Infant sunscreen for babies over age 6 months. If you live in a very sunny climate and your child is exposed to sun often, talk to your baby's doctor about applying sunscreen earlier.
Keep your baby in the shade, if possible. Their skin is thinner and more sensitive. Cover them up with clothes and a hat, limit their time in the sun (especially between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., when the sun is strongest), don’t let them get overheated, and get them out of the sun right away if they show any signs of sunburn or dehydration, including fussiness, redness, and excessive crying.