How to Create an Emergency Kit for Your Baby
September 24, 2016
You may have an emergency kit for your family in case of a natural disaster or other emergency situation, or maybe a car emergency kit for car-related emergencies, but do those kits contain the essentials needed to care for a baby? Most people don’t think to add “create an emergency kit for baby” to their nesting list, but if you find yourself relying on your emergency kits, you will be grateful you created one for your baby to keep them safe and happy during troubled times. Here are some items to consider as you create an emergency kit for your own baby.
The recommendation from ready.org is to store 3 days worth of food, but babies’ food requirements are different than the rest of the family’s. Baby food is always a good idea, as the jars can be reused and it also has high water content to provide water without using your water supply. In addition to traditional baby food, canned fruit and veggies are also a good food item for babies. Non-perishables such as crackers and dry cereal are also suitable for babies.
The general recommendation for water is 1 gallon of water per person per day, but a baby will likely consume less water than this amount. However. a gallon should still be the goal to shoot for, as that water may be needed for mixing formula or evaporated milk, washing, sanitizing, or to help another in need of water.
In an emergency, it’s important that your baby is hydrated even if that means reverting to a bottle. These are survival kits, so if your baby drinks most comfortably and easily out of a bottle, keep some bottles and nipples in your kit. Some babies drink efficiently out of straws, so even a pack of straws may be useful if only a more rudimentary water source is available, or no age-appropriate cups are available and your baby has a hard time drinking from a cup. Finding ways to preserve water and prevent it from being wasted is important.
It’s not practical to pack 3 days’ worth of bottles, pacifiers, etc. and babies tend to make bigger messes than older children and adults, so it’s important to have a convenient way of sanitizing baby’s items without having to boil water constantly. Sanitizing wipes to wipe down pacifiers and bottle nipples will save a lot of time and water in an emergency.
Diapers, Wipes, Baby Powder
Each baby is different, so determine how many diapers your baby goes through each day, then plan for 3 days worth of diapers for them. Just grab an extra pack each time you buy some at the store to add to your kit until you have 3 days worth. Be sure to rotate sizes as they grow. Throw in a sealed pack of diaper wipes and some baby powder or diaper rash cream, as well.
Your baby will likely need more clothing in his/her kit than the other family members simply because they are messier eaters, drinkers, and movers. Plan for the climate in which you live and change the clothing as the seasons change. Make sure to include socks and shoes even for non-walkers. Two changes of clothes per day, or an extra onesie per day is a good start.
Babies don’t understand emergencies. They thrive off consistency and routine, which is why packing some duplicates of their favorite items is a good idea to keep them happy and entertained while you deal with the stressful situations at hand. An extra blanket they like, spare pacifiers, stuffed animals, blocks, coloring book and crayons, favorite books, etc. can all be very useful during a crisis. For older babies, evaporated milk can be a comfort when regular milk is not an option.
Sleeping Bag/Portable Cot
If you are displaced, where will your baby sleep? It may not be safe for them to share a sleeping bag with a parent, so consider ordering a portable child-sized sleeping bag or portable, lightweight cradle, in which they can safely sleep.
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