11 things to keep handy in the month after your baby is born

Photo: SHUTTERSTOCK
Photo: SHUTTERSTOCK 

In the early weeks of motherhood, chances are you'll be up at all hours. You never know when your bub will decide no, she's had enough sleep and 3 am, is the perfect time to scream every time you put her down.

Or maybe he'll start cluster feeding, and you'll be feeding 45 minutes out of every hour, unable to move from your bed. It's these sleepless hours that make the perfect time to catch up on a book you've been wanting to read or a show you've been meaning to watch.

Make the nights a little easier by keeping these things by your bedside.

1. Phone charger

If you like scrolling through Twitter or Facebook in the wee hours of the morning, you'll want to make sure your phone charger is in easy reach.

If you're in an online Mums' group, chatting during night-time feeds makes the process a lot less lonely.

2. A tablet or eReader

Having a charged tablet or eReader within easy reach will starve off boredom in those long nights. Find one that is easy to hold with baby in your arms, and has a screen brightness that can go down quite low.

3. A list of useful phone numbers

There might be times when you just need help, whether to know if you need to take your baby to see a doctor, or if you're struggling and need someone to talk to. Keep a list of useful phone numbers in your top drawer.

Some good ones to have are:

Healthdirect: 1800 022 222 — available 24/7 for advice if your baby is sick.

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Pregnancy, Birth and Baby: 1800 882 436 — for access to a maternal child health nurse or counsellor (video chat is also available).

Lifeline: 131114

Australian Breastfeeding Association helpline: 1800 686 268

National Home Doctor Service: 13SICK (13 7425) — for an after-hours, bulk-billed, doctor home visit.

4. Hair elastics

Even tiny babies have a tendency to go for your hair and their grip is surprisingly strong. Being able to keep your hair off your face is invaluable.

5. Water

You'll probably need water regardless, but especially if you're breastfeeding. Thirst inevitably strikes the minute baby latches.

6. A thermometer

Having a thermometer handy will keep you from panicking when your baby's just a tiny bit warm, and know when it's time to call the doctor. 

7. Snacks

Midnight feeds are hungry work. Make sure you have some snacks in your bedside table. Try nuts or dried fruit for a healthy option, or if you're breastfeeding, consider some lactation cookies.

8. Many, many nappies

Even if you've got the perfect change table setup, there'll be times you'll just want to change your baby quickly without moving from bed. Keep nappies in the bedside table for just that reason.

9. Hand sanitiser

Yes, the bathroom might only be 10-feet away, but at 3 a.m., that can seem like an insurmountable journey. Keep hand santiser handy for when you just can't be bothered.

10. Lanolin cream

If you're breastfeeding, lanolin cream is great for treating sore or cracked nipples. Lansinoh is a old favourite for good reasons: it works amazingly.

11. Burp rags

Keep a good supply of burp rags handy for when baby throws up. Old fashioned terry-towel cloth nappies work really well for this.

This story originally appeared on POPSUGAR Australia, read it here.