Updated: Sep 8
It is normal for families to cosleep in the way they choose – bedsharing, room sharing, sidecar cot, musical beds, even use the snoo.
I believe that it is absolutely safe to practice bed sharing, and I am not alone
James J. McKenna, Ph.D., a pediatrician and a world-recognized infant sleep authority, notes:
“In sum, overwhelmingly, bedsharing deaths are associated with at least one independent risk factor associated with an infant dying. These include an infant being placed prone (on its stomach) and placed in an adult bed without supervision, or no breastfeeding, or other children in the bed, or infants being placed in an adult bed on top of a pillow, or who bedshare even though their mothers smoked during the pregnancy therein compromising potentially the infants ability to arouse (to terminate too little oxygen, or to terminate an apnea). Drug use and alcohol have historically been associated with poor outcomes for bedsharing babies so if drugs and/or alcohol are present, please don’t bedshare.”.
That been said, as a sleep educator, I always reccomend you start the night with a night time ritual, it is never too early to sing or read to your baby, also baby massage is so soothing, and put baby in his nighttime sleeping space. Then, on the next feed you can bring him to your bed. If you want to do bed sharing, it can make you life a lot easier. Some people are afraid of rolling over the baby, you probably won't, but if this fear prevents you from sleeping with your baby, you can use this little gadget in the middle of the bed between you and your partner:
Co-sleeping meaning, baby sleeps in your room is advised till at least 6 months by the American Academy of Pediatrics
AAP recommendations on creating a safe sleep environment include: ... Share a bedroom with parents, ... preferably until the baby turns 1 but at least for the first six months. Room-sharing decreases the risk of SIDS by as much as 50 percent.
For co sleeping I recommend something like this:
Under the sleeping category I am going to add swaddling blankets as these really help baby settle before bed and during the night. PLEASE NOTE IF YOU ARE BED SHARING YOU SHOULD NOT SWADDLE YOUR BABY.
I also love baby wraps
More about co-sleeping
Breastfeeding if you can, is hands down the best you can do for yourself and for your baby, you should not introduce a bottle till breastfeeding is well established, usually 3 to 4 weeks of life.
Let’s start with a breast pump. BTW your insurance should cover a breast pump so inquire.
And I have a lot of clients who are happy with this one as well.
Spectra Baby USA - S2 Plus Premier Electric Breast Pump, Double/Single, Hospital Strength When it comes to bottles it is important to have a very slow nipple flow when baby is little. Here are my favorite bottles:
Or if you prefer glass to plastic here are some good bottles:
I am partial to probiotics for a healthy gut, especially if mom had to have antibiotics during labor or if baby was given antibiotics for any reason at birth. Please do discuss any of the following products with your pediatrician. Here's my favorite probiotic for babies:
This is a great remedy for calming babies especially during teething.
This is great for gas:
and so is this:
3. Mama Care
In postpartum the attention seems so focused on baby sometimes mama-care gets lost in the shuffle. Your physical and emotional wellbeing is so important. As they say during a flight you must put the oxygen mask on you first, before you help a child, in postpartum we go by the same concept, mama MUST come first. here are few things that can help:
If you had a vaginal birth and are sore get one of these and soak your privates daily.
You can use warm water and a tablespoon of witch hazel or get these herbs and enjoy aquiet soak:
Now let's talk about your nipples, you must care for them, leaving them out in the air is best, but when you need it here are a few things you can use to soothe them.
Motherlove - Nipple Cream, Organic Herbal Salve for Soothing Sore Cracked Nursing Nipples, Lanolin-Free, Unscented Ointment, Great as a Pump Lubricant, No Need to Wash Off Prior to Breastfeeding, 1 oz
When you come home from the hospital you will notice that having a bowel movement is not as easy as it used to be, you have probably been given some stool softener, which might not be too natural, I recommend this to all my clients not only to regulate their bowels but also because it helps with stress (please as with all our suggestions, talk to your health care provider before taking them.)
To help you sleep you can put a few of these drops on a sleep mask or diffuse in your room:
Let's talk about your emotional health, postpartum depression is real and it is not your fault. Read more about some natural remedies here and please get some help.
4. Baby Stuff
We'll start with some must have nightgowns, the reason why I love these is because at night instead of undressing the baby completely to change his/her diapers you can simply roll this up and change him, without much disruption, look around there are many of these, just be sure to have a few size NB:
Absolutely adore these, a bit expensive but perfect size to last longer:
I love night time rituals, best to give your baby a bath while you are standing up, use this tub in your kitchen sink:
Don't forget a little soap, I like to wash my babies only once a week with soap:
I am not a fan of pacifiers, though studies have shown they do not interfere with breastfeeding. After 17 years doing this job, I realized some babies really need a pacifier for soothing, though use them only as tools not as a crutch. If your baby gets used to going to sleep with a pacifier she might wake up every time it fells off, plus I do not reccomend pacifiers past 6 months. However, if you do want to use one, here's my favorite:
To prevent diaper rash change your baby soiled diapers often, allow baby to go without diapers airing out their privates at least once a day, (on a towel; be prepared for a bit of a mess.) In case of a diaper rash use this:
For grooming purposes here are a few items i favor: I prefer scissors to nail clippers, here's a good goodie bag:
Toss the nose aspirator in a bulb you've got in the hospital, it can harbor mildew, and get this:
Fridababy NoseFrida Nasal Aspirator with 20 Extra . To prevent cradle cap, use a nail brush and gently exfoliate baby's head. GENTLY.
A baby stroller is expensive, it is important to know that a newborn till 3 months old need to be in a supine (laying down) position, Beware of car seat that transform into strollers as it not healthy for a newborn to be in a car seat for too long. Here's my favorite:
Bottom line you can live without these gadgets, and you may find some of these gently used so you don't have to pay a fortune, but these are some of my favorite things.
(we will update this page as we identify more products) Absolute as these really help baby settle before bed and during the night. PLEASE NOTE IF YOU ARE BED SHARING YOU SHOULD NOT SWADDLE YOUR BABY. Here are a couple of swaddling blankets