If you’re planning for a new arrival, assembling a baby first aid kit is a must. Not just for emergencies or first aid, a good health kit will also include a range of essentials to keep baby comfortable, healthy and happy on a daily basis.
From basic grooming to dealing with all those unavoidable little ills of babyhood: first colds, gammy eyes, skin rashes, teething and more.
We’ve put together a comprehensive checklist to make it easy to create a practical first aid kit for your newborn or baby. Brought to you by Care Pharmaceuticals.
A thermometer is essential for monitoring an ill baby’s temperature and deciding whether a doctor’s visit is in order. There are several models on the market – from forehead thermometers to old-school under-the-arm types.
Non-contact digital thermometers are more expensive, but they are great for checking a sleeping babe’s temperature without waking him or her. Given how much you’ll use it over the years, a digital thermometer is definitely a good investment.
2. Pain relief
Baby pain relief such as Panadol Baby Drops can be used from 1 month old to help bring down a temperature, ease teething or soothe the symptoms of first colds. Always keep a bottle on hand.
3. Nasal drops and aspirator
FESS Little Noses provides relief for blocked noses. The saline drops (for newborns) or saline nasal spray (for older babies) loosen mucous, while the bulb sucker helps clear the nose so your little patient can breathe easier.
4. Antiseptic cream
Have a good antiseptic cream on hand to keep any small cuts and grazes clean and free from infection.
5. Eye wipes
Use hypoallergenic wipes like Little Eyes to wipe around your baby’s eyes and between eyelashes, providing relief from eye infections, crustiness or styes while keeping this delicate area protected and germ-free.
They can be used as hot or cold compresses and are safe for use from day one.
6. Nail clippers or scissors
Babies’ nails grow surprisingly fast and if left unchecked they can give themselves nasty scratches. Baby nail clippers are specially shaped for smaller nails and some models come with safety features to prevent clipping too far.
7. Gel pack
Have a small gel pack in the freezer to treat bumps in an emergency. Make sure you wrap the ice pack in a cloth before applying it to baby’s skin.
8. Sensitive skin bandaids
Keep a stash of sensitive skin bandaids or bandages on hand to stem bleeding. However never use a bandaid on a spot where baby can pull it off or put it in their mouths (for example, a finger) as it could become a choking hazard.
9. Nappy rash cream
A nappy rash cream is a changing table must-have. You may need to experiment a little to find the one that suits your baby’s skin best, but popular options include barrier creams such as Sudocrem or soothing creams such as Bepanthen.
There are also natural options out there with ingredients such as Calendula, Shea Butter and beeswax.
10. Cotton balls
Tissues and wipes are often too harsh for babies’ skin – especially the face. Cotton balls have a multitude of uses, from bathing newborns to applying creams, and are a necessary addition to your bathroom cabinet.
11. Vapouriser / humidifier
During cough season, a humidifier will counteract the cold night air – relieving congestion and making it easier for babies to breathe. For safety reasons, look for cool mist versions that don’t emit hot steam. Or you could try an ultrosonic vaporiser instead of a humidifier.
12. Cough relief
Little Coughs is made with Ivy Leaf extract, which has been used for centuries as a medicinal herb for coughs. It’s free from preservatives, artificial colours or flavours.
Made for soothing coughs and chesty congestion (not dry coughs), it can be used from six months – but if your baby is under two years old, you should seek advice from a healthcare professional first before using it.
13. Baby sunscreen
The best ways to protect babies from the sun is with hats, long sleeved clothing or sun shades.
However, from 6 months old you can also apply a small amount of sensitive-skin sunscreen to areas that can’t always be covered up. Look for formulations specially made for young children.
14. Baby insect repellent
Rather than applying a topical insect repellant to baby’s sensitive skin, investigate non-contact solutions such as an ultrasonic insect repeller or a Para’Kito clip that can be attached to your pram to keep bugs at bay
15. Hand sanitiser
This is an essential for you, not the baby! Hand sanitiser is the quickest way to keep hands clean and germ-free between nappy changes or before and after handling your baby – especially when running off to wash your hands every 5 minutes isn’t an option.
16. Emergency contacts
Keep a list of emergency contacts on your fridge, next to your change table, in your phone and in your first aid kit. Put the poisons information 24-hour phone number in your phone right now: 13 11 26
17. First aid training
Consider taking a first aid course specialising in child-related emergencies so you’ll know exactly what to do in a crisis. Get together with your mother’s group or get the grandparents on board for a group class.
(This post is sponsored by Care Pharmaceuticals).