Preparing an Apartment for a Newborn
Getting everything ready to bring home your sweet little bundle of joy can be a daunting task. While the first question on your mind may be about the pending delivery, your approaching due date is also an indicator that it is time to prepare your apartment for your newborn. After shopping for all the necessary supplies, use your remaining time to create a cozy nest for your new family.
Pregnancy is an excellent time to make your apartment spic-and-span from top to bottom with non-toxic, environmentally-friendly cleaners. Family-friendly cleaners are readily available at stores, or you can make your own with simple ingredients.
Make an all-purpose spray with distilled water and liquid castille soap to clean most surfaces, or create specialized cleaners for kitchen, bath and laundry with basics like borax and vinegar. Scrubbing with items such as baking soda and vinegar can clean stains and grime from counter tops along with killing mold and eliminate soap scum.
Before bringing your newborn home to your apartment, address any safety concerns that you may have. For example, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends setting your water temperature to 120 degrees to reduce the risk of scalding your baby with hot water.
Place a carbon monoxide alarm in the apartment near where your family sleeps to prevent CO poisoning and install smoke detectors if your landlord has not already done so. Install baby gates on the stairs, put child-proof latches on drawers and the toilet seat, and cover all electrical outlets to keep little fingers out. You should also anchor large or heavy furniture to the wall to prevent it from toppling over.
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Prepare a place in your apartment for your little one to sleep peacefully (hopefully!). The safest place for your newborn to sleep, is in the room where you sleep, in his own bassinet or crib, on his back, without any extra pillows, blankets or stuffed animals.
A firm mattress, well-fitted crib sheet and a sleep sack are all your newborn will need for a safe night’s sleep. The AAP recommends considering giving your baby a pacifier at nap and bed times to reduce their risk of SIDS, so consider having a couple available near your baby’s crib.
Baby bath tubs can make bath time easier, even if your apartment bathroom has a tub. Parents can place a baby tub in a large sink, on the counter, or in the larger tub to give baby a safe bathing place.
If space is a precious commodity in your apartment, a separate changing table may not be necessary — consider placing a changing pad with safety strap on top of a dresser or simply change the baby on a portable changing pad on the bed or floor. The months before baby arrives is an excellent time to stock up on daily necessities, such as diapers, wipes and diaper rash ointment, and find a convenient place to keep them all. Creating a cozy place to feed your baby, such as a rocking chair in the nursery, can also help you feel ready for the day baby comes home.
Extra Set of Arms
Many parents find bouncy chairs to be almost as useful as an extra set of arms. They offer a convenient, comfortable, safe place to put your baby when necessary. And since they are small, lightweight and portable, they are ideal for apartments since there is no need to designate a particular place for them. Buying at least one bouncy chair is almost essential to preparing for your newborn.
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