Required: Changing mat with spare liners, nappies (approximately 10 per day), cotton pads and nappy wipes, nappy rash ointment
Highly Recommended: baby massage oil, baby moisturiser, organiser, hand sanitizer
Recommended: second changing mat for use elsewhere in your home, top and tail bowl
Baby Changing Essentials: Buying Guide
The sheer volume of nappies and nappy wipes you need to stock up on will be surprising. We suggest having at least one month’s supply of size 1 and size 2 nappies, cotton pads and wipes before baby arrives. You can plan for approximately 8-10 nappy changes a day using 6-8 cotton pads or nappy wipes for each (cotton pads should be used in the newborn stage to prevent any foreign substances from touching baby’s skin). Despite parents’ best efforts, nappy rash is common in young babies and we recommend 2-3 nappy rash ointments to start out with. You will also need 3-4 hand sanitizing gels for use next to your changing station as well as strategically placed around your home to maintain the highest hygiene standards. Changing mats come in a wide array of options from luxury down to the very basic – your main changing mat should ideally have lots of padding for baby’s comfort and deep sides to prevent baby from rolling off during nappy changes. Cotton covers and towelling liners are nice luxury options. A second basic changing mat is a useful addition for rooms where you spend a lot of time if you have a large home or where baby’s room is on a different floor from the main living area. Specially formulated baby moisturisers and oils are great for keeping baby’s skin healthy and hydrated, with baby massage a lovely way for you to bond with your baby while helping his physical and emotional development at a very young age.
We highly recommend organising your changing station in the most efficient way possible keeping any items you need within hands’ reach and requiring a minimum of fuss to get at – your attention needs to be firmly focused on securing baby. To this end, changing station organisers and specially designed top and tail bowls both can come in very handy.
Changing mats come in a wide array of options from luxury down to the very basic – your main changing mat should ideally have lots of padding for baby’s comfort and deep sides to prevent baby from rolling off during nappy changes. Cotton covers and toweling liners are nice luxury options. A second basic changing mat is a useful addition for rooms where you spend a lot of time if you have a large home or where baby’s room is on a different floor from the main living area.
The sheer volume of nappies you need to stock up on will be surprising (unless of course you decide to use re-usable nappies). We suggest having at least one month’s supply of size 1 and size 2 nappies before baby is born and you can then adjust the size accordingly. Pampers are great as a time-tested nappy, but there are a number of organic brands available as well. The Kiddicare Just4Bums Monthly Nappy Program is a wonderful option for ensuring your stock of nappies – just sign up to receive monthly packs delivered direct to your door with the option to return unused packs.
It is recommended that you use cotton pads and water only to clean newborn’s bottom for his first 1-2 months of life to protect their delicate skin before moving to nappy wipes. When using nappy wipes, organic products are an excellent option as they nourish sensitive skin while being free of chlorine, alcohol and other chemicals that may be in regular baby wipes.
It is important to follow a good baby skin care regime, and changing baby regularly is part of that. We recommend using a basic nappy balm or cream each time you change baby to moisturise and nourish the skin. Despite your best efforts, your baby will almost certainly experience nappy rash at some point. This can be very unpleasant – there may be red patches on your baby’s bottom, or the whole area may be red. The skin may look sore and feel hot to touch, and there may be spots, pimples or blisters. While it is important to try and prevent nappy rash in the first place by changing baby as soon as they soil their nappy and ensuring thorough cleaning, 2-3 tubes of specialist nappy rash ointments is a baby changing essential. As with everything else related to baby’s skin, organic is an excellent choice.
It is important to arrange your changing station in the most efficient way possible keeping any items you need within hands’ reach and requiring a minimum of fuss to get at – your attention needs to be firmly focused on securing baby. To this end, a changing station organiser which keeps everything in a unique place is a highly useful addition to your changing station. A top and tail bowl is useful for cleaning between bath times, and the two separate compartments for cotton and water ensure that baby is washed hygenically. However, you can also just use two separate bowls from your own kitchen.
A healthy newborn does not have to be kept away from other people, but they are more susceptible to viruses and bacteria so it is a good idea to keep her away from any unsanitary places and anyone showing outward signs of being ill — coughing, sneezing, nasal discharge, or fever. Since people who don’t know they’re sick can also spread germs, it is entirely appropriate to ask everyone wash their hands or use sanitizing fluid before touching your newborn and to make sure you do this after changing baby, coming in from outside, etc – the same way doctors and nurses do in the hospital before handling your baby.
Baby massage is one of the latest fads among today’s parents, but is something we think very worthwhile. It naturally promotes bonding between parent and baby and is thought to stimulate not just the muscular system but baby’s immune, circulatory and digestive systems as well. It can be particularly useful for mothers suffering from postnatal depression in empowering them to feel like they can care for their baby and is also very good for fathers who want to bond but don’t get as much physical contact with their babies. We have found it extremely useful for babies suffering from reflux, gas, wind and other digestive problems.
Look for lotions gentle enough that they can be used every day to keep baby’s skin nourished and healthy. Moisturisers with built-in sun protection are very useful when baby gets older.