Are you nearing the end of your pregnancy, and starting to think about what it will be like to bring your baby home? Maybe your nesting instincts have already started kicking in, and you’re working day and night to get your home just right. There are a few considerations that you’ll need to bear in mind, here are just a few of them.
Think about the room temperature
Babies aren’t good at regulating their temperature, so we need to make sure their surroundings are neither too hot or too cold. If you live in a warm climate or your baby will be born in the middle of the summer then you might want to consider having an air conditioning unit installed. In colder climates or for babies born in winter, check that the heating works well and consider having your home insulated. Hang a thermometer on the wall so you can keep a check on the temperature and make sure it’s just right.
Keep it clean and tidy
A newborn baby’s immune system is very underdeveloped, meaning germs and bacteria that aren’t an issue for adults can be potentially harmful or even deadly to them. Be aware of things like black mould and dust mites as these can go undetected but cause respiratory issues. Keep an eye out for pests, have an exterminator come in way ahead of your baby’s arrival so that the pests are gone and the chemicals have had chance to clear. Make sure your home is clean for when your baby comes home, ideally clean using natural products so there aren’t dangerous chemicals lurking in the air.
Add smoke and carbon monoxide alarms
Both a fire alarm and a carbon monoxide detector are so important in the home. If you do have a smoke alarm, make sure the batteries are working and test the alarm once a month. People who own smoke alarms and don’t replace the batteries often enough, are four times more likely to die according to research- likely as they’re given a false sense of security. Other alarms such as carbon monoxide detectors attached to boilers or fireplaces also need to be tested regularly. Your heating system is very important, if you are looking after children, heat and hot water is obviously essential.
Your baby beginning to crawl around and reaching for things might seem like a long way off when you first bring your newborn home, but it’s worth baby proofing your home anyway, get it done early and get used to having things this way. You’ll also want to avoid any other hazards in the home, piles of clutter or shoes that can be tripped over while you’re holding your newborn. Loose carpet or flooring can be a tripping hazard. Items piled up on top of cupboards can fall and cause injury. Another useful tip is to secure furniture to walls, there have been many sad cases of young children pulling things like bookcases down and being badly injured as a result.