As more parts of the country shut down due to coronavirus, trips to the store to grab various essentials for your baby may quickly become few and far between, if they haven't already. These baby products to stock up on during the coronavirus pandemic can help your family stay prepared should you not be able to leave your home for a couple weeks.
From mild soaps and diaper creams to gentle laundry detergent solutions, babies use specific products that not everyone else in your household may need, so it makes sense to purchase plenty of these necessities as you prepare to practice social distancing by staying home.
Some items on this list will seem super obvious (diapers, wipes, and formula are no-brainers), but you'll want to assess your supply and make sure you have enough to last you through 14 days of isolation, the amount of time the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends if you've been exposed to the virus. Stock up for a reasonable amount of time but do not clear off the shelves and hoard — many people need these essentials for their babies, too.
Here are 10 items to responsibly stock up on during a pandemic.
1. First Aid Kit
Dr. Jennifer Trachtenberg, M.D., pediatrician and spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), tells Romper that parents of babies should keep a basic first aid kit on hand. "It's always good to have bandages, Band-Aids, ice packs, pain reliever, an antibiotic ointment for cuts and scrapes, and a thermometer," she says.
Double check the first aid kit you currently have to ensure essential items aren't missing and fill in as needed.
2. Baby-Safe Medications
Depending on the age of your baby, make sure you replace all expired medications your baby may potentially need. If your baby does show symptoms of any type of illness, call their pediatrician for next steps. They can advise what type of medication to give your baby and how often.
3. Breast Milk Storage Supplies
If you're breastfeeding, you already know proper breast milk storage is important. Keep plenty of storage supplies on hand, including breast milk bags or bottles that can be properly labeled.
Although some women use regular food-storage freezer bags in a pinch, breast milk storage bags are properly sterilized for storing milk for your baby safely, according to Kids Health, so having those bags to store your breast milk in is ideal.
4. Diaper Cream
You literally never know when a severe case of diaper rash will pop up on your baby's bum. They can be incredibly uncomfortable for your baby and can lead to increased fussiness, so keeping a stash of diaper cream on hand is crucial. Dr. Trachtenberg recommends ones with zinc oxide.
5. Laundry Detergent
Babies have growth spurts. Have onesies or other baby clothes in the next size up ready to go. Although you'll be able to order some baby clothes online, it's a good idea to have a stash ready, or at least put in an order sooner than later because you never know how the pandemic might affect shipping times a couple weeks from now.
7. Diapers & Wipes
Your baby isn't going to stop pooping and peeing just because the rest of the world is at a standstill. Be sure you have plenty of diapers in your baby's size, and some in the next size as well.
Of course, a stash of wipes to keep your baby's bottom clean is definitely necessary, but considering that so many stores have trouble keeping stock of toilet paper, wipes are a hot commodity right now. If you can't find wipes at the store, there are plenty of options for DIY baby wipes online that use cloth or paper towels.
If you don't already have a humidifier, snagging one now could come in handy. Dr. Trachtenberg says that a humidifier is good to have on hand in case your baby gets congested during a quarantine situation.
9. Formula & Baby Food
Depending on your baby's age, determine how much formula or baby food your baby goes through in a week and stock up accordingly. If your baby isn't eating baby food quite yet but will be ready to in a couple of week's time, it might be a good idea to go ahead and grab some.
10. Baby Soap/Shampoo
If you're anything like me, you might have several tiny bottles of tear-free baby soap and shampoo stashed under your bathroom sink leftover from your baby shower. Now is the time to check your supply and head to the store for more if you don't have enough to bathe your baby for the next couple of weeks.
If you think you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, which include fever, shortness of breath, and cough, call your doctor before going to get tested. If you’re anxious about the virus’s spread in your community, visit the CDC for up-to-date information and resources, or seek out mental health support. You can find all of Romper’s parents + coronavirus coverage here, and Bustle’s constantly updated, general “what to know about coronavirus” here.