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A Pediatrician’s Top 9 Tips for Creating the Perfect Baby Registry

Tuesday, August 16, 2022 4:09 PM

By Isabelle Banin

From finding the right infant formula to becoming an expert at swaddling, parenting has a steep learning curve.

Color photo of a newborn baby boy sleeping peacefully while wearing a beanie hat.The baby registry is a chance for friends and family to help relieve some of the new baby stress.  Alas, even just creating the registry can rattle your nerves, especially when there’s so many baby products out there.

Focusing on what your baby will need during the first few months is recommended, since it’s harder to predict what they might need several months down the line, said NorthShore Pediatrician Rachel Chang, MD.

Here are Dr. Chang’s top tips for creating the best registry for your baby’s needs:

  • The three main categories to focus on are also your newborn’s top needs: eating, sleeping and hygiene.
  • Some must-have items you should add are rectal thermometers, books and a nose suction/nasal aspirator device. “It’s never too early to start reading to your baby,” Dr. Chang said.
  • Ask for a variety of clothing sizes, since babies can grow very quickly.
  • For bigger furniture items, think about how much use you will be able to get out of them, space constraints and budget. Don’t be afraid to put a big ticket item or two on the registry, since some guests enjoy teaming up for a larger gift item.
  • You won’t need items like nice toys for several months. Young infants love looking at faces, being talked to, and playing with common household items.
  • Avoid fancy gadgets, like formula mixers, white noise machines and bottle warmers, since it is difficult to predict ahead of time whether you will actually need them. Instead, wait until your baby is born and consider buying them if the need arises.
  • Avoid Bluetooth home heart rate/breathing monitors. These devices often cause parents more feelings of anxiety than security since they can frequently give false readings.
  • It’s okay to allow second-hand gifts, but be careful with items related to sleep and safety. Make sure safety items like car seats have never been damaged in any way and that sleep items like cribs meet all the current sleep safety guidelines. All soft items should come from a smoke-free home.
  • How to set up your baby registry is completely up to you and your personal needs. Some parents prefer to register theirs through a single store, while others prefer to DIY it.

Looking for a pediatrician? Visit NorthShore’s Pediatrics department to schedule an appointment.