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Your Questions About Baby Swaddle Sack

David asks…

How do you get your baby to sleep in a crib?

i have a 3 week old baby

Pilar Estefana answers:

Swaddle, or use a sleep sack if they don’t like swaddling

Use a recieving blanket (rolled) to block off part of the crib so it seems a smaller cozier space to them. Wear the blanket in your shirt so it smells like you (babies are very sensitive to smell)

play white noise, which is very powerful at this age – they even sell CDs of womb noises!

Introduce a pacifier for sucking (but be aware many babies become pretty dependent on that!)

If you are having problems, wait a few days and try again. This is pretty young for most babies to like their crib – we moved DD in around 4-5 weeks I think.

Hope some of these ideas help!

Steven asks…

What other baby related items should I stock up on?

I’m due in a few weeks with #2 and am stocking up on not-so-fun items. On my list are:
*breast pads (I will breastfeed)
*Dreft Laundry detergent
*Tucks (yay!)
*Sanitary pads (yay again)

Anything else you can suggest (other than diapers- they outgrow them so quickly and unexpectedly)?

Pilar Estefana answers:

Some dermoplast is good after giving birth too.. Ask your nurse for some. Those cooling maxi pads, peri bottles, and mesh panties at the hospital are good too.. Make sure you take some home with you, lol.

Breastmilk storage containers/bags that are BPA-free (safe plastic).. I think medela makes them. Lansinoh has good storage bags too.

If you’re nursing, the brest friend nursing pillow is a lot better than the boppy. It’s better for your posture/back pain b/c women tend to hunch while breastfeeding.

Onesies, zip up footed sleepers, sleep sacks, swaddling blankets, baby nail clippers b/c of their tiny fingers, mittens so they don’t scratch themself, hat for cool weather.

Lizzie asks…

Whats the difference in a blanket and Receiving blankets?

Probably a stupid question but whats the difference between a regular blanket and receiving blankets?

Pilar Estefana answers:

It’s just the size basically. Receiving blankets are smaller than most standard blankets so they fit the baby better. It just prevents having excess blanket near the baby (suffocation hazard) and also keeps the baby from getting too hot (SIDS risk)
If you’re looking into receiving blankets, consider a Woombie. My son was busting out of receiving blankets by 6 weeks old and still needed to be swaddled. The woombie is made of a stretchy, lightweight material and looks like a sleep sack without any arms. Once I started using the woombie, he also started sleeping SO much better!

Carol asks…

What are the essential baby items?

I am making my baby registry and don’t know what is essential. I am a single mother so I need things that will make my life as easy as possible, but I don’t know if a bottle sterilizer or something like that is a waste of time, and money. Thanks

Pilar Estefana answers:

Here’s a good resource: http://metropolitanmama.net/2009/04/unnecessary-baby-products-a-list-of-things-not-to-register-for/

There are several other lists on the web of unnecessary baby items. Just google it.

You don’t need any bottle-related items at all if you can stay home with the baby and breastfeed until the baby is eating solids (6 months). As a single mom, you probably will have to buy bottles so you can give the baby to a caregiver while you work and then you may need more of the accoutrements that go along with bottles. I don’t think you need a bottle sterilizer though. Most bottles can be put through the dishwasher, and some can be boiled. You also don’t need a bottle warmer, since you can just get the bottle out a little earlier than you need it and let it warm to room temperature, or put it in a bowl of hot water.

You also don’t need a designated changing table. Any dresser or countertop that’s a good height for you can be outfitted with a nonskid changing pad. Or get several thin change pads (the kind you can just roll up) and use them to change the baby wherever you are; bed, couch, floor, seat of the car, etc. That’s probably what you’ll end up doing anyway. Just make sure to never take your hand off your baby when you’re changing him/her on an elevated surface. That goes for changing tables as much as anything.

Also, you don’t need crib bumpers, crib bedding, pillows, or stuffed animals for the crib. The baby should have nothing in the crib except a well-fitting mattress and a fitted mattress sheet. Anything else is a suffocation/SIDS risk. There is a lot of evidence that crib bumpers are not safe for young infants and yet they’re still being sold all over, so parents may not be aware of that. To keep baby warm, register for swaddle blankets, receiving blankets to swaddle baby in, or sleepsacks/nightgowns.

A baby tub is nonessential. You can take a bath with your baby, or bathe them in the sink until they are old enough to take baths in the bathtub. However, baby tubs can be a convenient item since they may make bathtime a bit more comfortable or pleasant for the baby or relaxing for you. They sell some bathtubs that look like buckets, usually called Euro baths. These allow the baby to sit up in the water and are said to mimic a womb-like environment for baby. I have never used one, but I have heard them recommended for colic.

If you have a smaller house or apartment, baby monitors are also unnecessary. Or if you have a smartphone, you can get an app that turns your phone into a baby monitor; you just need to have a second phone.

You definitely need some kind of diapers, whether cloth or disposable, and you need a car seat. Actually, you only need a car seat if you are giving birth in a hospital and/or planning to take your child anywhere in a car. Someone who lives in New York might not be required to have a car seat if it is clear that they are walking home from the hospital. Otherwise hospitals require that you have a properly installed car seat before you leave the hospital. If you’re having a home birth, your midwife may or may not require that you have a carseat, but of course you need one if you ever want to drive anywhere with your baby or toddler. Anyone who owns a car should own a car seat. I wouldn’t register for clothes or baby blankets because you’ll get tons of those as gifts. Diapers, clothes/blankets, and a car seat are really all your absolute essentials. You have a lot of freedom from there as to what products you want for convenience.

For convenience, I would consider registering for a wrap, sling, or baby carrier, wipes (these are pretty essential, but you can always get by with wet paper towels), disposable diaper sacks to control odor, towels, bottles, breast pump, breastfeeding pillow like Boppy or My Brest Friend, nipple cream, a high chair, bibs, burp cloths, grooming items like a nasal aspirator, thermometer, nail clippers, etc., stroller, crib, crib mattress, at least two sets of crib sheets, rocker/glider (for you), footstool or ottoman (for breastfeeding comfort), a waterproof mattress protector for your bed if you will nurse the baby in bed or have him/her sleep with you, breast pads, nursing tops, a food mill if you don’t already have one (and want to make your own baby food), baby gate (if you have stairs or unsafe areas in your home), outlet plugs, pacifiers, baby or toddler dishes and utensils, and baby shampoo/wash.

I would also highly recommend buying a few books for your child. You’ll want to read to him/her and allow him/her to handle books to promote literacy, and kids tend to chew on library books so having a few favorites at home to let your baby handle and munch to his/her heart’s content is a good idea.

Bouncers, swings, jumpers, activity mats, and toys are total extras. If you have a colicky baby or one that cries a lot even if you give him/her lots of love and attention, you may want to try these distractors. By the time you have a second kid, they will probably come in handy, and they can be useful as a safe place to put the baby while you shower, etc. So it’s not a terrible idea to invest in one or two of these now. But they should be last on your list, since all your baby needs to entertain him/her in the first year is you. YOU are the best, most educational, most developmentally appropriate toy your baby could ever own, so keep that in mind when picking out toys, even books.

Donna asks…

What all should/shouldn’t be in the crib when I bring him home?

The crib looks SO big and I know he’s gonna look lost in there. What can I put in there, if anything, around him so he’s cushioned and cozy?

Pilar Estefana answers:

Like everyone else is saying, nothing should be in the crib except a snug fitted sheet. If you use bumpers, they should be the mesh netting ones, not the ones that come with crib sets. Anything other than the sheet is a SIDS/suffocation hazard. This includes padded bumpers, blankets, stuffed animals, pillows, etc. Your baby won’t feel lost in there–babies know nothing about bedding, and don’t know that there “should be” pillows and blankets. Just swaddle your baby or put him/her in cozy footed pj’s or a sleep sack (I love those!) and the baby will be just fine!

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