HOW TO PREPARE FOR A NEWBORN?
First time parents and not sure where to start when it comes to your pregnancy to-do list?
As new parents, the last thing you want to do is overlook a vital step or something important that will make labor and first few days at home more difficult. Here’s a list of things to do when preparing for a newborn:
CHECK YOUR HEALTH INSURANCE COVERAGE
Wondering how much it will cost you to bring your baby into the world?
The best way to find out what your plan covers is to call your insurance company with a list of questions and take detailed notes.
This is also a good time to enquire about adding your baby to your plan. Your newborn should be covered by your insurance for the first month or two of life, but after that they will need to be added on as a separate person.
CHOOSE A HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
As soon as you see those two pink lines appear, it’s time to start shopping around for an OBGYN or a midwife depending on the type of birth experience you’re hoping to have. A midwife can help you have a more personalized and natural birth with fewer medical interventions, while an OBGYN is your best choice if you have a serious medical condition or plan on having a C-section.
Other factors you should take into consideration are recommendations from friends, your personal connection with the provider, and whether your health insurance covers their services.
For more tips, read: How to choose an OBGYN
PLAN YOUR FAMILY LEAVE
The Family and Medical Leave Act entitles certain employees to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave when they have a baby. Your employer may also offer a certain number of weeks of paid maternity leave and your partner may be entitled to paid paternity leave. Depending on your workplace, you may be able to fill in any gaps with sick days and vacation days. Enquire about your options early so you have time to plan and fill out the necessary forms.
For more information as to the eligibility criteria, review the United States Department of Labor site for more information.
DO SOME FINANCIAL PLANNING
It’s no secret that children are expensive! It’s a good idea to map out a budget not only for the first year of your baby’s life, but also for more long-term expenses such as education and extracurricular activities.
Consider setting up a savings account or a 529 College Savings Plan for your little one. You can then make monthly contributions and ask grandparents or other close family members to chip in. The good news is 529 plans come with tax benefits, so don’t forget to look into those offered in your state.
CREATE A BIRTH PLAN
C-section or water birth? In a hospital or at home? Epidural or all-natural? There are so many decisions to be made when it comes to your ideal childbirth scenario, so it’s best to write down all your preferences and discuss them with your OBGYN or midwife. Not sure where to start? Read: How to write a birth plan. Don’t forget to pack your hospital bag, too!
FIND A PEDIATRICIAN
With all your attention focused on your pregnancy and delivery, it can be easy to forget about finding a doctor to care for your little one once they’ve made their grand entrance into the world. Recommendations from friends and family are always your best bet, or try the American Academy of Pediatrics’ online search tool for a pediatrician in your area.
TAKE CHILDBIRTH AND INFANT-CARE CLASSES
Contractions and breastfeeding and swaddling, oh my! A childbirth education class will teach you everything you need to know about labor and childbirth and help you approach the big day with confidence. Infant care classes cover everything from breastfeeding and bathing to swaddling and settling. You might also want to take an infant CPR class. Ask your doctor or do an online search for classes near you.
DO ESSENTIAL HOME REPAIRS
Patching holes in the wall and replacing lightbulbs? Who has time for that with a newborn! Get all those home repairs and minor renovations done before baby arrives. If you and your partner aren’t handy, consider hiring a handyman.
PLAN YOUR CHILDCARE
If you’re planning on going back to work, you’ll need to plan your childcare sooner rather than later. Options include daycare centers, home daycares, nannies and care provided by family members. If you’re unsure what’s best for you, ask friends and other parents in your area for recommendations.
Learn more: https://www.thetot.com/mama/10-practical-ways-to-prep-for-a-new-baby/