Preparing for a Baby | A Listed Guide Through Pre-Parenthood
Introduction to ‘How To Prepare For A Baby’
“Are you ready?” is a question you will hear at least twice in every trimester. The answer is... you can never truly be ready, you can have all the right gear and read all of the right books, sure, but attaining the ‘ready’ status comes in small increments up until they are leaving home and taking half of the cupboard with them.
While you may never be fully ‘ready’ you can be prepared. In this article, we’ll discuss possible things to consider in the defining moments of pre-pregnancy, first, second and third trimester. When preparing for a baby, you will have a thousand different Susans, Karens and Katies telling you how to prepare for your first child. It’s vital to remember that your GP knows best and any advice given unto thee by a professional is final. This baby blog accompanies the ‘Clinical Practice Guidelines’ approved by the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council.
Table of Contents
- Private Health Insurance for Pregnancy
- Budgeting for a Baby
- Preconception Care - Health and Well-Being, Support Networks
- First Trimester
- Finding the Right GP
- Tips on Dealing with Morning Sickness
- Who to Tell About Your Pregnancy
- Second Trimester
- Preparing your Home for a Baby
- Baby Moon
- Birthing Plan
- Third Trimester
- Do Your Research
- Baby Essentials Checklist
When planning for a baby, there are many things to consider before you blow out the candles and put on a bit of Barry White.
Private Health Insurance for Pregnancy
Private health insurance for pregnancy isn’t the most flattering topic to discuss first cab off the rank, but private health insurance for pregnancy is tricky when preparing for a baby. The answer is, however, straightforward. To qualify for private health insurance covering pregnancy, you have to apply the year before conception. That’s why we have mentioned it immediately so that you can get on top of it straight away. If that doesn’t relate to you, then read on as we discuss crucial steps in the guide to preparing for your first child.
Budgeting for a Baby
Children will cost you an arm and a leg it’s no lie, and just when you thought “they have finally moved out of home!” they are around every night for dinner and you’re still doing their washing. But budgeting for a baby gets easier the more organised you are. If you start saving sooner, you can afford to put a smaller amount of money away per week. There is an endless list of baby essentials and reoccurring purchases that stack up quickly.
Hot Tip - Baby showers are a great way to tick a few of those smaller items off the list. To get an idea on prices or look at baby items that should be at the top of your Baby Essentials list, check the Maxi Cosy product range. From baby capsules, booster seats, strollers to highchairs; Maxi Cosy provides care, comfort and quality.
Preconception Care - Health and Well-Being, Support Networks
Pregnancy is a challenging time for all women, feeling strength mentally, physically and even socially can be a world of difference.
A regular exercise routine and a balanced healthy diet are required in preparation for a baby. Seeing to these qualities of everyday life will also increase the chances of fertilisation and lower the risk of miscarriage.
Mental health has to be prioritised equally. Adding to the tribulations of pregnancy, women experience an influx of hormones tipping the emotion scales morning, noon and night. Creating a tight support network of friends and family that understand what you’re going through is imperative to a healthy mental state of mind.
By this stage, you’ve seen the little blue plus sign on the pee stick of destiny, and you’ve booked an appointment with your GP. Firstly, they will confirm the outcome, and secondly, they will give you a glass of water and tell you that everything will be alright, which brings us to the number one priority in the first trimester; ‘Finding the Right GP’.
Finding the Right GP
When preparing for your first child, choose the right GP. You’ll be seeing this person a lot over the next nine months. It would be ambitious to say that every GP is easy to deal with and has lovely smelling breath.
Dealing with Morning Sickness
Morning sickness is one of the biggest misconceptions around pregnancy; we’re not saying it doesn’t exist, oh no, we’re saying that it’s not restricted to the confines of the morning. Morning sickness can be ‘all day and into the night sickness’. Having realistic expectations about the struggles of the first trimester will benefit you immensely.
Who to Tell About Your Pregnancy
The urge to tell as many people as possible is infectious (especially for the people you have already told). But in all seriousness, the people you confide in are the people you will have to tell if you have a miscarriage. Which takes us to the final element of preparing for a baby in the first trimester
The fact that you have conceived a baby and you’re currently growing a human inside your womb is a glorious, beautiful miracle, but your expectations must remain realistic. 10 - 15 % of pregnancies end in miscarriage, and 80 % of those miscarriages happen in the first trimester. It can happen for a wide range of reasons, and sometimes it just comes down to genetics. Don’t lose hope! A recurrence of miscarriage occurs in 1 % of women. If there are recurrences, an investigation by the doctors is conducted to find the cause.
You’ve entered the second trimester of pregnancy and you’re out of the weeds. Hopefully, the “morning” sickness has begun to dissipate, and the natural pregnancy glow has taken over. The second trimester is when you can tick a few jobs off your list, partly because you’ll have the energy to get off the couch and tackle every-day tasks.
Preparing Your Home for a Baby
There are a few sacrifices made when preparing for a baby; ridding your home of dangerous modern, contemporary art sculptures and sharp-edged coffee tables are some of them. While this comes under the second trimester bracket, you ultimately have until they can walk, that’s when things start to get dangerous. Put valuables out of reach, install stair gates (top and bottom), chemical (all) cupboards locked, setting up the baby room etc.
When preparing for a baby, it’s easy to sweat the small stuff; what brand of nappy to buy, what formula to use and so on. The most important thing is keeping your relationship alive and stable. Your partner (or first call of support) will be your strength and safety when times get hard. A great way to keep the bond healthy is going on a babymoon. Get away for a few days, book some snazzy accommodation and reignite the reason you were making babies in the first place!
It’s confusing trying to understand precisely how to prepare for your first child because there are a thousand things to remember! You have to consider that there is a team of professionals looking after you. They will tell you where to go, what to bring and what to expect before every appointment. Sometimes the admin, nurses, midwives, pediatricians and obstetricians enjoy telling you what to do a little too much!
Your midwife will help you construct a birth plan. It will consist of deciding what kind of birth you want to have; natural, water, from home, with or without epidural anesthesia, candles, no candles etc. You don’t have to make birth plan decisions by yourself.
Baby Shower and Baby Names
During your 20 week scan, you can find out the sex of your baby. Some people like to keep it a surprise, and others can’t stand uncertainty; both are fine. It could be time to start the baby names flowing? You’ll undoubtedly get bombarded at the baby shower with friends putting forth their own names as possible solutions (that joke will get old). But baby showers are great; you’ll be reminded of the incredible support networks around you and potentially receive a few baby gifts that will save you money when it comes to crunch time.
So you’re in the deep end of the ‘preparing for a baby’ pool. Things are starting to get serious! You’ve considered your budgeting for the baby, your birth plan is set, you’re sick of people touching your stomach with slime sticks and your hips are aching because your body is releasing relaxing hormones to soften your bones preparing for a baby to exit. With all these things going on, you need to relax, go with the flow; the more you relax, the easier the process will be.
Do Your Research
Whilst you are trying to relax, do as much research about life outside of the womb as possible. At so many points in a child’s early life (and teen life) you will say to yourself “I have no clue what I’m doing”. Understanding your child’s brain development and what they are experiencing through sight, sound, and touch will help you cope and relate to the late-night crying.
Baby Essentials Checklist
When budgeting for a baby, you should leave some room for the baby essentials checklist. Here is a comprised list of things you will need, some of which you can find at Australia’s leading baby essentials supplier, Maxi Cosi.
- Baby Capsules
- Play Equipment
- Breast Pump
- Baby Clothes
- Lots of Nappies
- Car Seat
- Booster Seats
- Changing Table
- Teething Toys
- Dummies (you’ll go through a lot of them)
- Nappy Bag
With products available in over 100 countries, Maxi Cosi strives to take the worry out of parent’s lives by providing the safest and most secure baby essentials in the market.