Oh baby! Here’s our top 10 tips to give a helping hand to first-time mums
Baby on the way? Be prepared to have your world turned upside down. Here are Woman’s top tips to see you through those challenging first few months. . .
1Don’t turn down offers of help. People will want to fuss around you and your new baby and now isn’t the time to be proud. However, if you’re specific about what you need them to do then everyone’s a winner. Need someone to pop out for nappies? Or empty the bins? Then just ask – people want to feel useful.
2Limit home visitors. Friends and relatives will want to come and see you but there’s plenty of time for that. Take time to acclimatise to your new role without the pressure of having to cater for guests.
3Before your baby arrives, cook a big batch of meals you can freeze – then there will be home-cooked food to hand when you’re too knackered to be in the kitchen. Dishes such as chilli con carne or casseroles freeze really well.
4Stock up on non-biological washing powder. You’ll never do more washing then when you have a newborn baby, when bed clothes need changing daily and little outfits get spoiled before you’ve even finished putting them on.
5 Make friends with other new mums. While the thought of ‘mummy friends’ might make you wretch right now, these women will be your saviour, particularly during lonely long days on maternity leave or those seemingly never-ending night-time feeds. Baby classes, NCT courses or pregnancy yoga are perfect places to meet other new parents and you never know, you could be making friends for life.
6Buy plenty of muslin squares. Babies can make a lot of mess, particularly if they have acid reflux – very common in young babies because their oesophagus isn’t fully developed.
7You can never have enough plain baby grows. However, make sure they are easy to fasten; the last thing you want during that middle-of-the-night outfit change is to fiddle with tricky press studs. In fact, that goes for all items of clothing – put practicality ahead of cuteness and you won’t regret it.
8Take lots of pictures. Moments are fleeting with a little one and you’ll soon forget when they first smiled, or when their second tooth appeared. Capture the moment on your mart phone or camera and store them in an album or baby book. You’ll treasure it forever.
9 Remember nothing lasts forever. If your baby doesn’t sleep through the night, or vomits milk everywhere when you feed them, it’ll only be relatively short-lived.
10 Expect the unexpected. No amount of planning can prepare you for what’s about to happen so strap yourself in and try and enjoy the ride. There will be good days and bad but remember it’s all worth it for the bundle of joy.