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12 Essential Things To Do Before Your Due Date

Posted on April 07 2020

Our list of essential things to prepare for your baby’s arrival.

As your due date nears, it may be overwhelming to keep track of all the things you need to do before the baby is born. Here is our list of 12 things to plan, organise and get ready during your third trimester.

 

 

1. Pack your hospital bag

Hospital bag essentials, including your own toiletries and lots of snacks.

Know what your hospital will be including in their bag, if any. For example, Thomson Medical has a Green Essentials bag for mummies delivering in 2020. Other essentials you’ll need include hospital documents, a doctor’s letter and yours and your husband’s identification documents. Definitely bring your own favorite personal toiletries, e.g., toothpaste, toothbrush, soap and shower gel, as well as maternity sanitary pads. You could use the hospital’s, but for your comfort, use a trusted brand.

For yourself, you’ll need a nursing bra, nipple cream and breast pads, as well as a nursing pillow, undergarments, and your own pyjamas that opens in the front for breastfeeding. Another set of clothes to bring are the ones for your discharge. During your stay, you’ll also need chargers for your electronics, i.e., handphones, Kindles/Nook. For your little one, bring a set of clothing to go home in, with mittens and socks, wet wipes, newborn diapers and a swaddle or blanket.

 

 

2. Pre-wash your baby's clothes

Ensure all your baby’s clothes are thoroughly clean by washing them with an unscented laundry detergent and extra rinse cycle.

 

Whether you’ve got hand-me-downs or brand-new clothes, definitely pre-wash the clothes with a baby-safe laundry detergent.This ensures all your baby’s clothes are thoroughly clean for them to wear. Use an unscented laundry detergent with an extra rinse cycle and you can wash your baby’s laundry with your own clothes. This is definitely a task to be done in advance, as there’ll be little time to do this once your baby is born.

 

 

3. Get your essentials ready

Pump hands-free with the Simple Wishes Pumping Bra, perfect for multitasking mamas.

 

To start with, try the Simple Wishes Signature Hands Free Pumping Bra, which secures your flanges to your breasts for a hands-free pumping experience. This allows you to multitask while pumping. Using high quality Velcro, the one-size-fits-all design is adjustable with straps and a one-inch center panel so it can fit you no matter how your size changes. With a convertible design, you can wear this bra strapless, tank, racerback or halter style, and can be worn over a nursing bra. Additionally, this bra works with all electric pumps, creates a better seal and improves suction. Finally, this machine-washable bra is made of 83 per cent soft cotton and 17 per cent spandex.

Other nursing essentials include breast pads, afore-mentioned breast pump to help with expressing your milk, feeding bottles and burp cloths. You’ll need breastfeeding clothing options such as stretchy tops, nursing tops and dresses. These should have discreet flaps, slits or wrap-over panels for nursing. Another item that should come in handy is nipple balm or cream, which will soothe and moisturise irritated skin after nursing. You can also try hydrogel pads once your milk starts coming in. To nurse discreetly, consider getting a nursing cover. Find the complete list of essentials for yourself and baby here.

 

 

4. Get Organised

Set up the nursery so you have all your baby’s essentials on hand, making it much easier when changing a wriggly little one.

 

Ensure everything is prepared beforehand, set up the car seat in your car, learn how to detach it and affix it to your stroller if you’re opting for a travel system. You may also want to figure out how to fold and unfold your stroller, so you’re well-accustomed to these items once your baby arrives.

Next, set up the nursery with the cot, changing table, and dresser, all your little one’s belongings and essentials, as well as a nursing chair and pillow for yourself when feeding your baby. Check out Melody Yap’s nursery here for some inspiration. Take this time to plan a budget for your baby’s appointments, and vaccinations and consider a baby insurance plan. Some options are Pacific Prime, Prudential, and AXA.

 

 

5. Look for your Paediatrician and confinement nanny

Aside from getting recommendations from your peers or your OB-GYN, ask how the paediatricians treat your friends’ little ones.

 

One of the best ways to look for a paediatrician is to ask your OB-GYN, friends and family for their recommendations. Among the questions to ask are how their child responds to the doctor, how the paediatrician’s behaviour and attitude is like, and what they do or do not like about the doctor. Other important questions include whether the doctor addresses their concerns, waiting time, and if they send reminders for matters like vaccination dates.

Likewise, do a similar search for a reliable confinement nanny, and do interview her, either in person or on the phone before you commit. Be clear in your expectations of her job scope, e.g., if she’s also in charge of preparing your confinement food, or if you’ll order separately, and if you want her to focus more on the baby so you can focus on getting sufficient rest to recover. Always ask for more clarifications if you’re unsure about something. It may be best to consider a trustworthy confinement agency.

 

 

Try to get more sleep, if possible

Try lying on your side to get better sleep.

 

Although this is good advice, between all the pesky third trimester symptoms, and having to get up constantly to urinate, it might not be that easy. Here are some ways you can try to get better quality sleep. Firstly, eat earlier in the evening, and have a snack if your stomach rumbles later on before you sleep. Eat any sugary desserts and have your caffeine fix in the early afternoon, anytime after that may make you jittery.

 

Next, practice a relaxing bedtime routine, without physically holding electronic devices for at least an hour before bedtime. This could include light reading, soothing music and a bath, or a sleep app and meditation. Alternatively, try lavender essential oils which are calming and can help you fall asleep faster. Consider surrounding yourself with pillows to prop yourself up, a nursing pillow to relieve tension on your back. Ensure the room temperature is comfortable and your room is sufficiently dark - otherwise use a comfortable eye mask. Stop yourself from continually checking the time as it will just stress you out more, which is completely counter-productive. Also, ask your doctor for pregnancy-safe sleeping aids if sleep continues to elude you.

 

 

7. Go on date nights before the baby arrives

Spend lots of time as a couple before the baby comes, even if it means dancing in your living room.

 

Before your baby arrives, go on one-on-one date nights. With the latest call for social distancing in Singapore, do this responsibly and try restaurants that are actively practicing this, such as those in Marina Bay Sands. Otherwise, think outside the box even when at home - do a couple workout from YouTube, Glo,Daily Burn or simply dance it out in the middle of your living room. Similarly, you could also learn to cook, virtually travel around the world, visiting sites like the British Museum and Central Park. Another alternative can be to have a private dining experience with personal chefs and pick up cooking tips which you can apply to your meal prep. We recommend preparing a few of your favourite meals before you give birth, especially if your confinement nanny won’t be preparing the food, or you’re not getting confinement meals ordered in. Lastly, you could collaborate on writing a letter to your baby together.

 

 

Brainstorm a list of viable baby names

Make sure your baby’s name won’t subject him/her to endless ridicule.

 

When choosing your baby name, firstly, avoid any names that will make them an immediate target of ridicule. Consider how their first name and last name work together, and try to use a name that is easy to pronounce, otherwise your child will suffer from having to repeat her name over and over again. No matter how tempted you are, refrain from calling them any verb, adjective, place name or anything else that will likely earn them needless mocking. Popular names in 2020 are Liam and Emma, with a trend towards four-letter names.

 

 

9. Learn about childbirth and taking care of your newborn

Go for antenatal classes to learn about taking care of your baby.

 

Armed with this new knowledge, you can formulate a birth plan. Do take into consideration that the birth might not always go the way you want it to exactly, and add in those as contingency plans. Start with the basic details: your name, your doctor’s name and contact information, the location where you want to give birth and who you want there with you.

 

Next, add in details like what might help you feel most comfortable, such as the lighting, how quiet your room would be, and if you’d like someone to take photos or video of the process. Other essential information might be if you want to walk around freely, or if you’d like to use any birthing aids, or have a warm shower or bath. Additionally, consider pain management options, delivery preferences, and if you’d like to breastfeed/bottle feed right after delivery. Review your birth plan with your partner, and doula if you’re having one, as well as your doctor. Your OB-GYN can confirm if these preferences are possible. Once finalised, give your doctor, your birth partner a copy each, and have a few more in your hospital bag just in case.

 

Other great resources for your journey in parenthood include books from Amazon. Ensure your child - and you - are getting enough rest by sleep training your newborn.

 

 

10. Pamper yourself to look and feel your best when giving birth

While pampering yourself by getting your nails and hair done is safe during your pregnancy, do bear in mind that you may have to remove your nail polish when you’re giving birth.

 

If you’re planning to share your birth announcement on social media and you want to look and feel gorgeous, there are some pregnancy-safe beauty options to heighten your natural beauty. Firstly, you can get your nails filed and shaped, although your nail polish will be removed if you’re going for surgery. Colouring and perming/straightening your hair is also pregnancy-safe, although you could opt for henna colour to be sure. Eyelash extensions are also safe, but it might be best to lay off the microblading.

 

 

11. Celebrate with a maternity shoot, birth announcement and a baby shower

Take a dive underwater for an unforgettable maternity shoot.

 

To commemorate this special chapter of your life, plan a maternity shoot. The possibilities are endless, beginning with a simple mirror selfie all the way to an underwater shoot. Do what works for you, and include your nearest and dearest - namely, your partner, your older children (if any) and your pets.

Additionally, share your joy with your loved ones with a baby shower. Given the current COVID-19 situation, we don’t recommend any big gatherings - an intimate one for just your nearest and dearest is fine. You can also invite other friends and relatives who can’t be there in person to join your shower virtually via Skype, WhatsApp, or Zoom. As for birth announcements, you could capture the moment you become a family of three or four, or simply a cute photo of your newborn with a caption - it’s really up to you. Just plan it in advance and ensure your partner’s aware of it so you don’t miss that special moment. Get some inspiration on Instagram.

 

12. Take your maternity leave and plan the ride to the hospital

Let your employer know when you want to take your maternity leave, and ask about some flexible working arrangements.

 

Once you’re around 36 weeks pregnant, inform your employer when you’d like to take your maternity leave, so they can make the necessary arrangements in advance. Do also check with them if it’s possible to include half-day work schemes or three-day workweeks in your flexible leave, and then agree on how your work performance will be assessed. Other considerations include whether you can revert to taking the maternity leave as a continuous block or bring forward your flexible leave in the event of your resignation.

With the frequent, weekly check ups you’re having in your last trimester, you can also take the time to estimate how long it takes to get there, in varying traffic conditions. Bearing in mind that on that day, your partner may be in no condition to drive, see if you can get your parent - or his parents - to drive you down instead. Otherwise, a Grab or taxi is best.

Our list of essential things to prepare for your baby’s arrival.

As your due date nears, it may be overwhelming to keep track of all the things you need to do before the baby is born. Here is our list of 12 things to plan, organise and get ready during your third trimester.

 

 

1. Pack your hospital bag

Hospital bag essentials, including your own toiletries and lots of snacks.

Know what your hospital will be including in their bag, if any. For example, Thomson Medical has a Green Essentials bag for mummies delivering in 2020. Other essentials you’ll need include hospital documents, a doctor’s letter and yours and your husband’s identification documents. Definitely bring your own favorite personal toiletries, e.g., toothpaste, toothbrush, soap and shower gel, as well as maternity sanitary pads. You could use the hospital’s, but for your comfort, use a trusted brand.

For yourself, you’ll need a nursing bra, nipple cream and breast pads, as well as a nursing pillow, undergarments, and your own pyjamas that opens in the front for breastfeeding. Another set of clothes to bring are the ones for your discharge. During your stay, you’ll also need chargers for your electronics, i.e., handphones, Kindles/Nook. For your little one, bring a set of clothing to go home in, with mittens and socks, wet wipes, newborn diapers and a swaddle or blanket.

 

 

2. Pre-wash your baby's clothes

Ensure all your baby’s clothes are thoroughly clean by washing them with an unscented laundry detergent and extra rinse cycle.

 

Whether you’ve got hand-me-downs or brand-new clothes, definitely pre-wash the clothes with a baby-safe laundry detergent. ensures all your baby’s clothes are thoroughly clean for them to wear. Use an unscented laundry detergent with an extra rinse cycle and you can wash your baby’s laundry with your own clothes. This is definitely a task to be done in advance, as there’ll be little time to do this once your baby is born.

 

 

3. Get your essentials ready

Pump hands-free with the Simple Wishes Pumping Bra, perfect for multitasking mamas.

 

To start with, try the Simple Wishes Signature Hands Free Pumping Bra, which secures your flanges to your breasts for a hands-free pumping experience. This allows you to multitask while pumping. Using high quality Velcro, the one-size-fits-all design is adjustable with straps and a one-inch center panel so it can fit you no matter how your size changes. With a convertible design, you can wear this bra strapless, tank, racerback or halter style, and can be worn over a nursing bra. Additionally, this bra works with all electric pumps, creates a better seal and improves suction. Finally, this machine-washable bra is made of 83 per cent soft cotton and 17 per cent spandex.

Other nursing essentials include breast pads, afore-mentioned breast pump to help with expressing your milk, feeding bottles and burp cloths. You’ll need breastfeeding clothing options such as stretchy tops, nursing tops and dresses. These should have discreet flaps, slits or wrap-over panels for nursing. Another item that should come in handy is nipple balm or cream, which will soothe and moisturise irritated skin after nursing. You can also try hydrogel pads once your milk starts coming in. To nurse discreetly, consider getting a nursing cover. Find the complete list of essentials for yourself and baby here.

 

 

4. Get Organised

Set up the nursery so you have all your baby’s essentials on hand, making it much easier when changing a wriggly little one.

 

Ensure everything is prepared beforehand, set up the car seat in your car, learn how to detach it and affix it to your stroller if you’re opting for a travel system. You may also want to figure out how to fold and unfold your stroller, so you’re well-accustomed to these items once your baby arrives.

Next, set up the nursery with the cot, changing table, and dresser, all your little one’s belongings and essentials, as well as a nursing chair and pillow for yourself when feeding your baby. Check out Melody Yap’s nursery here for some inspiration. Take this time to plan a budget for your baby’s appointments, and vaccinations and consider a baby insurance plan. Some options are Pacific Prime, Prudential, and AXA.

 

 

5. Look for your Paediatrician and confinement nanny

Aside from getting recommendations from your peers or your OB-GYN, ask how the paediatricians treat your friends’ little ones.

 

One of the best ways to look for a paediatrician is to ask your OB-GYN, friends and family for their recommendations. Among the questions to ask are how their child responds to the doctor, how the paediatrician’s behaviour and attitude is like, and what they do or do not like about the doctor. Other important questions include whether the doctor addresses their concerns, waiting time, and if they send reminders for matters like vaccination dates.

Likewise, do a similar search for a reliable confinement nanny, and do interview her, either in person or on the phone before you commit. Be clear in your expectations of her job scope, e.g., if she’s also in charge of preparing your confinement food, or if you’ll order separately, and if you want her to focus more on the baby so you can focus on getting sufficient rest to recover. Always ask for more clarifications if you’re unsure about something. It may be best to consider a trustworthy confinement agency.

 

 

Try to get more sleep, if possible

Try lying on your side to get better sleep.

 

Although this is good advice, between all the pesky third trimester symptoms, and having to get up constantly to urinate, it might not be that easy. Here are some ways you can try to get better quality sleep. Firstly, eat earlier in the evening, and have a snack if your stomach rumbles later on before you sleep. Eat any sugary desserts and have your caffeine fix in the early afternoon, anytime after that may make you jittery.

 

Next, practice a relaxing bedtime routine, without physically holding electronic devices for at least an hour before bedtime. This could include light reading, soothing music and a bath, or a sleep app and meditation. Alternatively, try lavender essential oils which are calming and can help you fall asleep faster. Consider surrounding yourself with pillows to prop yourself up, a nursing pillow to relieve tension on your back. Ensure the room temperature is comfortable and your room is sufficiently dark - otherwise use a comfortable eye mask. Stop yourself from continually checking the time as it will just stress you out more, which is completely counter-productive. Also, ask your doctor for pregnancy-safe sleeping aids if sleep continues to elude you.

 

 

7. Go on date nights before the baby arrives

Spend lots of time as a couple before the baby comes, even if it means dancing in your living room.

 

Before your baby arrives, go on one-on-one date nights. With the latest call for social distancing in Singapore, do this responsibly and try restaurants that are actively practicing this, such as those in Marina Bay Sands. Otherwise, think outside the box even when at home - do a couple workout from YouTube, Glo,Daily Burn or simply dance it out in the middle of your living room. Similarly, you could also learn to cook, virtually travel around the world, visiting sites like the British Museum and Central Park. Another alternative can be to have a private dining experience with personal chefs and pick up cooking tips which you can apply to your meal prep. We recommend preparing a few of your favourite meals before you give birth, especially if your confinement nanny won’t be preparing the food, or you’re not getting confinement meals ordered in. Lastly, you could collaborate on writing a letter to your baby together.

 

 

Brainstorm a list of viable baby names

Make sure your baby’s name won’t subject him/her to endless ridicule.

 

When choosing your baby name, firstly, avoid any names that will make them an immediate target of ridicule. Consider how their first name and last name work together, and try to use a name that is easy to pronounce, otherwise your child will suffer from having to repeat her name over and over again. No matter how tempted you are, refrain from calling them any verb, adjective, place name or anything else that will likely earn them needless mocking. Popular names in 2020 are Liam and Emma, with a trend towards four-letter names.

 

 

9. Learn about childbirth and taking care of your newborn

Go for antenatal classes to learn about taking care of your baby.

 

Armed with this new knowledge, you can formulate a birth plan. Do take into consideration that the birth might not always go the way you want it to exactly, and add in those as contingency plans. Start with the basic details: your name, your doctor’s name and contact information, the location where you want to give birth and who you want there with you.

 

Next, add in details like what might help you feel most comfortable, such as the lighting, how quiet your room would be, and if you’d like someone to take photos or video of the process. Other essential information might be if you want to walk around freely, or if you’d like to use any birthing aids, or have a warm shower or bath. Additionally, consider pain management options, delivery preferences, and if you’d like to breastfeed/bottle feed right after delivery. Review your birth plan with your partner, and doula if you’re having one, as well as your doctor. Your OB-GYN can confirm if these preferences are possible. Once finalised, give your doctor, your birth partner a copy each, and have a few more in your hospital bag just in case.

 

Other great resources for your journey in parenthood include books from Amazon. Ensure your child - and you - are getting enough rest by sleep training your newborn.

 

 

10. Pamper yourself to look and feel your best when giving birth

While pampering yourself by getting your nails and hair done is safe during your pregnancy, do bear in mind that you may have to remove your nail polish when you’re giving birth.

 

If you’re planning to share your birth announcement on social media and you want to look and feel gorgeous, there are some pregnancy-safe beauty options to heighten your natural beauty. Firstly, you can get your nails filed and shaped, although your nail polish will be removed if you’re going for surgery. Colouring and perming/straightening your hair is also pregnancy-safe, although you could opt for henna colour to be sure. Eyelash extensions are also safe, but it might be best to lay off the microblading.

 

 

11. Celebrate with a maternity shoot, birth announcement and a baby shower

Take a dive underwater for an unforgettable maternity shoot.

 

To commemorate this special chapter of your life, plan a maternity shoot. The possibilities are endless, beginning with a simple mirror selfie all the way to an underwater shoot. Do what works for you, and include your nearest and dearest - namely, your partner, your older children (if any) and your pets.

Additionally, share your joy with your loved ones with a baby shower. Given the current COVID-19 situation, we don’t recommend any big gatherings - an intimate one for just your nearest and dearest is fine. You can also invite other friends and relatives who can’t be there in person to join your shower virtually via Skype, WhatsApp, or Zoom. As for birth announcements, you could capture the moment you become a family of three or four, or simply a cute photo of your newborn with a caption - it’s really up to you. Just plan it in advance and ensure your partner’s aware of it so you don’t miss that special moment. Get some inspiration on Instagram.

 

12. Take your maternity leave and plan the ride to the hospital

Let your employer know when you want to take your maternity leave, and ask about some flexible working arrangements.

 

Once you’re around 36 weeks pregnant, inform your employer when you’d like to take your maternity leave, so they can make the necessary arrangements in advance. Do also check with them if it’s possible to include half-day work schemes or three-day workweeks in your flexible leave, and then agree on how your work performance will be assessed. Other considerations include whether you can revert to taking the maternity leave as a continuous block or bring forward your flexible leave in the event of your resignation.

With the frequent, weekly check ups you’re having in your last trimester, you can also take the time to estimate how long it takes to get there, in varying traffic conditions. Bearing in mind that on that day, your partner may be in no condition to drive, see if you can get your parent - or his parents - to drive you down instead. Otherwise, a Grab or taxi is best.