Infant Tips

10 Tips for New Parents

I can’t believe I’m already 29 weeks pregnant, oh how quickly it goes by. Being in the third trimester is extremely exciting, but it’s also starting to bring up some fear and anxiety for sure. As a mom, we know there’s nothing better than holding that tiny little miracle, and all the joys they bring to our lives. However, I’d be lying if I said it was easy for me. Unfortunately, I was one that had a real hard time with the sleep deprivation, and was also one that went through Post Partum Depression. So the thought of having to possibly go through it all over again is scary. That’s why I’ve started to remind myself of all the important lessons I learned from friends and family as a new mom. There is so much that is easier said than done, but I’d like to share some helpful tips I learned over the years. 

  1. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. I really do wish I could do it all myself, but I am not someone who’s afraid to vocally admit that I simply can’t. Having family close by would certainly help, but because we don’t, I am constantly enlisting in my husband for his help. Sorry sweetie!
  2. Talk to other moms. Talk to your friends, family, and the enormous online mom community. It can be extremely comforting to know you’re not alone, and that the majority of us parents are going through the same struggles.
  3. Get both parents involved from the beginning. Chances are dad (or mom) may even be honored that you trust them to take on certain responsibilities, such as the bedtime or bath time routine. My husband and I split up duties, from diaper changes, to drop off and pick-ups at daycare. Being the mom, I certainly do more as it relates to caring for D, however my husband is great with helping out around the house.
  4. Agree to disagree. I had to learn quickly to get over the fact that my husband wasn’t going to change D’s diaper the way I did, or burp him like I wish he would. As long as he was involved and helping, I needed to get over it and just be thankful.
  5. Sleep when the baby sleeps. I heard this SO many times before having D, but when he finally arrived I had the hardest time sleeping when he slept. I felt like I should be doing something with that time vs. resting myself. I will for sure take this advice seriously when baby #2 arrives. Resting up and taking care of mommy is much more important than getting that second load of laundry in, or cleaning the dishes in the sink.
  6. Rotate getting up with baby at night. I think it’s important for families with two parents to figure out a game plan ahead of time. Maybe one takes late nights, and the other takes early mornings, or you alternate days? Either way, it’s so important for both parents to try and catch up on sleep whenever possible.
  7. Find a reliable babysitter. Whether it’s a close friend, grandma, sister, or relative, you and your significant other should take some time out for yourselves. Also – take advantage of having each other around. Be sure to give each other time alone, whether it's gym time, spa time, or a girls/guys night out. We found that was very important for us.
  8. Gift certificates. Family and friends are always asking you what you need/want before, and after the baby arrives. Ask for the not so glamorous things like housecleaning gift certificates, or meal delivery services.
  9. Prep the night before. In order to save a little time and sanity in the morning, I tend to pack the majority of our lunches the night before. I also pack up my work bag and gym bag too, so all is ready for the next morning. I haven’t gone as far as actually putting them in the car the night before, but that might be the next step.
  10. Prioritize things/make a list. I find it helpful to make a list of the things I want/need to do. In doing that, I tend to find that the majority of the list can wait. Nothing is as important as caring for your family and for yourself.

What is your one tip for new parents?

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Dr. Greene

Dr. Greene is a practicing pediatrician, author, speaker, children’s health advocate, and father of four.

Dr. Levine

Dr. Alanna Levine is a New York based pediatrician and a mom of two children.