Parenthood is a wonderful adventure, but if this is your first time facing it, the idea of becoming responsible for a tiny human being can also become a daunting challenge. Fortunately for those of you who’ve decided to produce in this day and age, there’s an app for literally anything you can think of, including childcare. While technology is still not advanced enough to allow your smartphone to do all the actual heavy lifting for you baby-wise, you can rest assured that there are apps available to you that will help you become a more prepared and efficient mama. To help you get started, here’s a roundup of the best apps for new moms, tried and tested by an actual new mom:
1. Apps To Keep Your Parenting Skills Sharp
If you need a catch-all app for all your baby’s activities, Glow Baby is a pretty great place to start. You can track your child’s feeding and sleeping schedule, the number of wet and poopy diapers, important milestones, growth charts, and a lot more. You can access a summary of all that info and download it as a PDF you can bring to your next doctor’s appointment. You can connect with other first-time parents through the in-app community, ask questions, and share your experiences. You can read daily articles about important baby milestones. Give this one a try and you’ll immediately notice a myriad of essential tools that will help you transform into a supermom in no time.
While the website this app is made for is first and foremost designed for newly pregnant women, the useful resources it provides extends to after you give birth to your child. Through the app, you can gets tips for dealing with common first-time mommy issues like post-birth recovery, breastfeeding, sleep deprivation, and your general “what do I do” and “is this normal” concerns, to name a few. Information is summarized into concise and digestible lengths so you don’t have to dive into thick parenting textbooks that might overwhelm you.
This is another app that lets you track all baby-related activities, but its most useful function is by far its extensive library of medically-backed content. Short of hounding your pediatrician about every single baby concern your worried mommy brain can think of, the WebMD Baby app is a suitable source for supplemental information on baby care, illnesses, parenting, vaccines, and your baby by-the-week. You can also access pages that are mom or dad-specific, as well as video Q&A sessions with a WebMD in-house pediatrician.
2. Apps To Keep Momma Organized
If there’s one thing about being a new mom that’s true, it’s this: You will always think of something your baby needs, and it’s usually things that you don’t have on hand. For such a parenting “emergency”, you will need a quick and easy way to get these needs for your child, may it be a Sophie the Giraffe toy, a spare pacifier, a cute outfit, or a Jumperoo. You can pretty much get all the essentials on Amazon—be sure to sign up for a Prime subscription (yay for free two-day shipping and returns!), and you’re all set! And while you’re at it, start a baby registry as well. (That way, you’re not doing all the buying.)
While you can easily create a baby registry or wish list on Amazon, Babylist gives it the extra cuteness and pizzazz potential gift-givers might need to get them to click the purchase buttons. The Babylist app lets you add items from various popular baby stores and brands, edit your registry, and see who gifted you which item in real time—you can even keep it a surprise! You can also find out quickly which of the items have been reserved and purchased and which ones are still up for grabs.
Rather than using a rubber band on your wrist to remember which side you started to breastfeed from (or feeling your breasts for engorgement and deflation), you can use this app for all your feeding needs. It’s got a timer (that tells you if you last fed on your left or right side), a log (for feeding, sleeping, growth, and diaper changes), and an analysis page that lets you review daily, weekly, and monthly averages for feeding and diaper changes.
Need to find the nearest kid-friendly place to go to while you’re out and about with your baby? Mom Maps lets you view parks, playgrounds, restaurants, museums, and play areas that promote kid-friendly fun, as reviewed by fellow parents on the go. A thing to note, though: So far, only 28 metro areas are mapped out, so unless your city is included in the list (see the app’s description page on your App store of choice), you won’t be able to maximize this app.
Moms are the gatekeepers of the whole family’s health and well-being, and having an easy way to access and manage a list of prescriptions – not just for the baby, but for every single family member – is certainly a welcome feature. Through the CareZone app, you can, among other things, create a secure meds list, schedule dosage and refill reminders, organize insurance information, and access contact details for your doctors and pharmacies
3. Apps That’ll Keep Your Little One Safe and Comfy
This is a useful app to have if you’re worried about a prescription or over the counter medication’s effects on pregnancy and breastfeeding. Just use the app to scan barcodes to receive up-to-date and evidence-based data on thousands of drugs and find out the safety of any ingredient found on any of your medicines.
Is your baby a restless sleeper? You can soothe your child by playing ambient sounds designed to promote better quality sleep. This app also has a collection of classical tunes as well that can provide you with more variety. Features include a baby rattle mode that turns your device into an effective touch-and-shake tool to keep a fussy baby preoccupied, a baby monitor you can set up to play a sound when crying is detected, and tips that promote better and safer sleep.
You don’t need to spend over $50 for a brand-new baby monitor – for a small price, you can convert your smartphone, tablet, or computer into one. While the app requires two devices to actually work – one stays with you while the other stays in the baby’s room – once it’s set up, it’s very easy to use. Using either a 3G or Wi-Fi connection, it transmits live high-definition video from the nursery to your device on hand. It monitors every movement and sound, all without the need for light. You can even keep track of how often your baby wakes up in the night and talk to them with a simple press of a button.
4. Apps For The Paparazzi Parent
Let’s face it—no matter how hard you try to keep your baby’s privacy on lockdown, a small part of you will always want to share photos and videos of your bundle of joy with the rest of the (online) world. Consider creating a private Instagram account for your baby and invite only your closest family and friends.
Every mobile photographer needs a photo-editing app. If you only have room for one, make it this one. It has everything you will ever want – filters, effects, easy-to-use editing tools, collage maker, the works – and it’s very easy to use. It’s the closest you can get to having Photoshop on your phone.
Feel free to get trigger-happy when it comes to shooting pictures and videos of your baby – you can easily back everything up with Google’s flagship photo app. Once you sync your phone’s photo gallery with the app, it sorts its contents into albums that makes images and footage easier to locate. It also has an assistant function that automatically creates collages from like images and animations from burst photos, among other things.
Rather than manually keeping track of important baby milestones on a baby book, consider going the digital route through an app that acts like a personalized social network, just for your little one. You can store videos and photos according to your baby’s age and send frequent updates to friends and loved ones (and receive comments from them as well). The best thing about Lifecake? You and your family can actually order prints of the photos you’ve uploaded and lay them out onto a glossy-paged, hard-covered photo book as a great keepsake.