Leaving your baby with a babysitter can make you very anxious and stressed. It is often hard to leave your baby with someone else. One question that often comes up for concerned mothers is what information to leave for a babysitter. Knowing that your sitter is prepared for any situation can make all the difference to your emotional state while you’re away from your baby. We’ve consulted with an expert (Dr. Gina Lamb – Amato MD), a mom (Mary Ann Malone), and a one of the Mommybites staff (Elise Jones) to find out what notes they leave for their babysitters when they go out.
Dr. Gina Lamb – Amato’s Notes for a Babysitter
First make sure you have screened your babysitter and checked her references. Second the babysitter should be CPR and First Aid certified in case of an emergency, your baby gets sick or hurt. Having a babysitter who is trained in CPR and First Aid will give you immense peace of mind.
Things That Are Helpful to Leave with the Babysitter
- Names of all family members.
- Home address.
- Home telephone number and all cell phone numbers.
- Contact information on other family or friends such as grandparents, etc.
- Email or texting contact information if you can be contacted this way.
- Pediatrician’s office and on call emergency number.
- Allergies that your baby or other children may have including food allergies.
- Medications required while you are out including ones for teething, colic, asthma, allergic reactions, etc i.e. whatever is appropriate for your child or children.
- If your baby has severe food allergies or allergies that can be life threatening that require potential use of an epipen make sure you instruct babysitter on how to administer epipen or other emergency medications and keep all medications in a locked box or cabinet which the babysitter has access to the key.
- First Aid kit location and review all supplies in kit with babysitter.
Where To Find
- Spare key to home.
- Location of light switches and lights in home.
- Location of Fire extinguisher in home.
- Extra blankets.
- Flash lights in case there is a power outage.
When you should be contacted:
- If your baby or child develops an illness such as a fever or vomiting.
- If anyone is injured and more than a Band-Aid are needed.
- If your baby or child is inconsolable and the babysitter is unsuccessful in calming and soothing the situation.
- Anytime the babysitter feels the home situation is unsafe such as threatening intimidating or threatening phone calls, suspicious visitors, etc.
- Questions about medication doses, information about your baby or child that is needed, etc.
Baby or Child’s schedule and Bedtime or Nap routine:
- Baby or child’s favorite toys she sleeps with or uses for comfort.
- Books to read to baby or child before sleep.
- Location of extra clothes and pajamas.
- If babysitter is to bathe baby or child all bath supplies and bath safety instructions.
- Toys and activities to do with baby or child.
Emergency Contact Information
- EMS telephone number.
- Police Emergency telephone number.
- Fire Emergency telephone number.
- Ambulance telephone number.
- Poison Control telephone number.
- Pediatrician or Family Physician telephone emergency number.
- Veterinarian emergency number if appropriate.
- Nearest hospital telephone number.
- Location of all fire extinguishers.
- Map of Emergency exits so everyone is out of home if fire.
- Instructions about babysitter’s personal phone calls while watching baby or child. It is recommended that babysitters do not use their cell phones for personal calls while caring for infants and children as this is distracting and leaves them unsupervised even if only briefly on phone.
- Appliance that are not to be used such as electric heaters.
- Television programs off limits.
- Rooms off limits.
- Foods not allowed.
Where you will be:
- Locations of where you will be while you are out.
- Phone numbers where you can be reached.
- What time you expect to be home.
- When you will call in to check on baby or child.
- Let baby sitter know if you are available by texting or email on your phone.
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What Mary Ann Malone Leaves for a Babysitter
When I go out I leave the usual suspects with my sitter. Contact numbers for myself, husband, friend close by, and doctors. I also leave snacks and take out menus. There are always games, puzzles and crayons—and of course bribery treats and a favorite video in case things get hairy!
What Elise Jones Leaves for a Babysitter
With a first-time babysitter I make sure before I go I give her the lay of the land: kitchen, bathroom, bedrooms, areas that are off limits and our house rules that may come in handy while we are out. I also show her how to turn on the TV and access movies. All of my sitters come fed and never want to order out (which is totally opposite of my NYC sitters) so I don’t have to leave them with food or menus. There is an emergency sheet on my refrigerator that gives all of the important numbers and medical information for my children: my husband and my cell phones, neighbors phones, pediatrician phones, insurance information, poison control number and any medical information on my children (allergies, surgeries, etc). Other than that I tell her if I am expecting anyone to stop by and what to do in case of an emergency.
About our team
Dr. Gina Lamb – Amato MD
Gina is a general pediatrician and developmental pediatrician who works at Village Pediatrics and Agho Medical practices both in Manhattan, NY. She has a masters in child therapy and works with a child psychologist Rosa Vasquez PhD performing office and home consultation for newborns and parents, office and home developmental assessments, school consultations and parent child playgroups where play and art along with baby massage and other techniques are used to help parents bond and support their child’s development. Formerly, Gina was the Director of Pediatric Special Medical Needs before she went into private practice where she cared for medically fragile infants and children. She is also a Early Intervention Pediatrician for Early Intervention which assesses and treats infants from age zero to 3 years. She has extensive experience in Early Head Start programs which work with infants from prenatal to 3 years of age. She is the mother of a beautiful daughter who is 3 years old and the joy of my life. Her husband is an artist, producer and owns Synchronicity Space, a non-profit arts organization that supports emerging artist in fine art and theatre. Finally, she is also an artist who paints mainly babies and children.
Mary Ann is mom to 3 boys, ages 8, 5 and 2. Besides her boys and the business, she am a music fanatic, design nerd and obsessive DIYer!
Elise is former social media director and blog editor for Mommybites. Elise was a teacher and worked in corporate PR. She is a wife and loving mom of two lovely girls and currently resides in New Jersey.
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