I’d be willing to bet that while you’re reading this your cell phone is within 10 feet of you. It’s likely within arms reach and possibly in your hand at this very moment. It’s a good bet, the odds are truly in my favor. Accordingly to a “Moms and Media” study released by Edison Research, 92% of moms now own a cell phone, with 69% owning a smartphone. And get this, the study revealed that 83% of moms report that their smartphone is within arm’s length most of the time or always! I certainly fall into that category and as I entered the world of motherhood my smartphone use has transformed right along with the rest of my life.
In the last year or so my husband and I started trying to conceive, got pregnant, and welcomed a new baby into our family. Each step of the way I learned that, like virtually everything these days, there’s an app for that. It may sound silly or maybe unnecessary, but I’m here to tell you about a few apps that can seriously help you stay organized and in control as you attempt to make, deliver and care for a baby. (These recommendations are based on my personal experience, this is not a sponsored post.)
First up, meet your BFF as you begin TTC… Fertility Friend Mobile was really helpful when we got serious about conception. This app is a menstrual calendar, a period tracker, an ovulation chart and an advanced fertility chart interpretation tool. Fertility Friend makes it easy to record your basal body temperature each morning and track other fertility signs. The app takes all the information that you plug into it and displays your very own fertility calendar with handy color codes for your period, fertile days, ovulation and more. It even has an option to set a daily alarm so you’re prompted to take your basal body temperature at the same time each day to ensure more accurate charting. As an added bonus, the app syncs to FertilityFriend.com and includes extensive educational resources to give you the knowledge you need to feel confident and empowered as you tackle the task of baby making. Fertility Friend Mobile is free and is available for iPhone and Android.
I wasn’t an avid user of any particular app during my pregnancy but I stumbled upon a handy app after my water broke. It didn’t take me long to realize that timing contractions is a skill, and not a skill that we seemed to possess in the
chaos excitement of early labor. As we climbed into the car to head to the hospital I downloaded the Contraction Timer app and it was really helpful. This is a super simple application. It does just what it’s name implies, it times contractions. You push the big start button when a contraction begins and hit the big stop button when it dies down. The app records and displays the start time and duration of each contraction and it calculates the interval between each one. When we (finally) arrived at L&D I handed the nurse my phone and they had all the information they needed about my progressing contractions. It allowed me to breathe a little easier during a time when my breathing mattered most! This app is currently only available for Android but there is a similar app called Contraction Master available for iPhone, both are free!
Las, but certainly not least, before you leave the hospital do yourself a favor and download Baby Connect on your phone and on your significant other’s phone. If you already have little ones you may remember the huge pregnancy journal that many hospitals would send home with new families with instructions to record all feedings and diaper changes for the first few weeks. Well, times have changed and now you can ditch the pen and paper and simplify your tracking with this awesome app! It is extremely simple to log feedings (whether you’re nursing or bottle feeding), diaper changes, sleep habits, milestones and more. You can customize the home page to only include features that you utilize (in our case we mainly track feedings and diapers so we removed everything else so it’s easier to navigate when you’re half asleep), and with the push of a button you can view feeding and diaper stats in an easy to read chart which is great for visits to the pediatrician. I was also thankful for the alarm feature on this app because our daughter, Skylar, lost some weight in her first few days and had to be woken every 2-3 hours to eat. Each time we logged a feeding the app automatically set an alarm for her next feeding which was easier than using a separate app or setting a tabletop alarm clock in the middle of the night.
Possibly the best Baby Connect feature is that the app allows several authorized users to make and view entries for the child from several different devices. Entries are immediately and securely synchronized on each user account so all caregivers (parents, daycare staff, etc) are in the loop about when the child was last changed, fed and when he/she napped. This app was absolutely indispensable for the first few weeks with our little one! Baby Connect is available on all devices or can be accessed with a browser. There is a 3-day free trial but I recommend that you pony up the $4.99 from the get-go and let this app make your life as a new mom a little less hectic. It’s truly a lifesaver in the first few weeks when your memory is hazy thanks to lack of sleep and raging hormones!
What apps do you recommend for new or expecting mothers?