When your baby finally comes home, you may feel overwhelmed now that all of your child’s care is in your hands. Some simple organization tips can go a long way to help as you settle in. Read what other preemie parents did to get their home ready.
Michelle: “Make sure you are prepared at home for as many things as you can be BEFORE you leave the hospital. Have all meds, feeding supplies, baby supplies, food for the family, lots of sanitizer, clean sheets, Lysol, gloves, cleaning supplies and anything else you need to help you camp out at home for several weeks.”
Sheri: “Buy or make a sign for your front door stating that you can't enter if sick, and must was hands every time.”
Becca: We cleaned our house top to bottom. I shampooed the carpets and didn’t want anything dirty in our house, period! I set up places for everything we would possibly need nearby. I had extra leads on the shelf under my table along with wipes, extra tubing, tape, etc. I also had the essential sanitizers and other things on top of the table and by each door!
George: Vacuum, dust, and clean like crazy before they come home!
Keira: “Don’t forget all the basic baby needs. We spent so much time at the hospital and was so focused on making sure we had all the medical supplies at home, I forgot about diapers, wipes, and burp cloths. We also set up a second changing station/medical supply cart in the living room, where we spent a lot of time. This way we didn’t have to run back to the nursery every time we needed to change a feeding tube or a diaper.”
Mandi: “Before my daughter came home, I made several meals and put them in the freezer so we could still have a home cooked meal...taco soup, lasagna, BBQ chicken, etc.”
Sarah: “Make lots of frozen dinners for the first couple of days and if someone wants to help ask them to bring food or gift cards to places that deliver.”
Richard: “We had a healthy home check and called in a company to look for mold and other pests. We also spent a lot of time deep cleaning the house. And I made sure we had new batteries in all the smoke detectors and since we lived in an older house I got a humidity monitor and carbon monoxide detectors.”
Martha: “Be sure to let your local fire, phone, and power companies know you have a medically fragile baby at home. Especially if you have oxygen or monitors at home. We got a letter from our baby’s neonatologist to ensure we would be at the top of the response list in the event of a natural disaster or power outage.”
Stephanie: Have changing stations around the house and stock up on preemie diapers if your baby is still small. It helps to have all those supplies organized in various locations so you don’t have to run to the nursery every time you need something…especially if your baby is attached to a feeding bag, oxygen, or other equipment!
Sheri: Buy or make a sign for your front door stating that you can't enter if sick, and must wash hands every time. Have a notebook to keep track of all the meds, diaper changes, etc. Make sure you fully understand how to use the monitors, oxygen, or any other treatments or meds baby has before you leave the NICU.
Amy: Remember that your baby is not used to silence during sleep time. Some type of white noise or music will likely help them sleep more soundly. They are used to beeping, talking, and constant noise.
Leila: Purchase a carrier cover for your car seat/carrier. There are universal mesh covers available on Amazon. It will keep baby from putting their hands on the baby while you are out at appointments.
Jennifer: If your baby will be coming home with a monitor, order extra leads because they become “unstuck” really quickly. We also ordered a months’ worth of feeding bags, extra canulas, and extra pulse ox probes. Make a sign for your door and stroller. You can also order them from www.handsoffmybaby.com. You’ll be shocked at how many people just want to come over and touch your baby!
Keira: We found out that our insurance company would pay for formula because our triplet daughters were tube fed. We needed the formula to fortify my breastmilk and they needed such a high concentration of calories that we were going through a can and half per day!!! That gets expensive very fast!
Sheri: We loved the Boppy newborn lounger which sits the baby upright. This was great when she was having bad reflux!