Pregnancy and baby Megathread - all the things you need to do and know

Pregnancy and baby Megathread - all the things you need to do and know

Found 23rd Jan 2017
Ok so if you or someone you know has just found out they are pregnant here are some tips / facts / links and info that they need to know about all in one place. I have written this as apparently January is THE month to get a positive pregnancy test after all the Christmas celebrations....

As soon pregnancy is confirmed, join the Boots parenting club HERE This gets you 10 x advantage card points on baby and maternity purchases until the baby reaches age 3 and they send you offers tailored to each stage of pregnancy and baby age such as FREE folic acid and vitamin D tablets, money off clothing and 25% off Mum to be products.

Sign up to Emma's diary HERE You get £200 money off vouchers for Argos, photo book offers and 3 bags full of samples and vouchers tailored to each stage of your pregnancy. Some people have suggested setting up a different email address for this and other freebies to avoid junk emails in your main email account.

You are now entitled to FREE prescriptions from now until the baby is 1 - Ask your midwife for form FW8 which gives the exemption INFO HERE

You are now entitled to FREE NHS dental treatment. Ask your midwife for form MATB this covers you until the baby is 1 INFO HERE

Join the Mothercare club and get 10% off carseats, 20% off maternity clothes, £10 off a £100 spend, £5 off a £50 spend on footwear and clothing, 20% off toys for your childs birthday and tips, milestones personalised to you child MORE INFO

You may be eligible for a £500 Sure Start maternity grant to help with the cost of a new baby. Only available if it is your first baby or you are expecting a multiple pregnancy and if you are on certain benefits and the payment will not affect your benefits. Check you eligibilty HERE

You could also qualify for Healthy Start vouchers which is £3.10 a week in pregnancy towards, fruit, veg and milk - if you are on income support, child tax credit you could qualify CHECK HERE

Check your maternity rights and look at your SMP pay projections by putting your dates and wages in the calculator. You are entitled to paid time off for antenantal appoinments and while you are off on maternity leave you also accrue holidays and are also eligible for pay rises that other employees are getting. HERE

Don't forget the Dads! Check out what he is entitled to paternity pay wise and they are also entitled to attend 2 maternity appointments as well HERE

Childcare vouchers are also a great way to save money on childcare. As soon as the baby is born, either parent or both parents can pay up to £55 a week in through their wages and you will not pay tax or NI on this so if one parent pays in the maximum of £243 a month (£55 a week) over the course of the year you will save £933 or if you both pay in you could save £1866 a year. They are deducted through salary sacrifice through your employer and can be used for any registered childcare provider or holiday club up until the child reaches 16. More info HERE

You are going to go through an AWFUL lot of nappies be it disposable or reususable - you will go through loads. Whichever method you choose you can get free samples of Aldi nappies and baby wipes to try through NetMums using this link HERE

The Cow & Gate baby club free to join - You'll get great advice, free goodies and more

Spend £5 in Baby (from your Baby Wishlist) and get a MAM Bottle (worth £4.75) for FREE @ Amazon

Save up to 20% on Nappies & baby food at Amazon

Get a heads up on Asda Baby events / Also here for the best deals

Get 20% off ELC on your child's birthday

Get over £100 worth of Vouchers with MyMothercare & 20% off Maternity Clothing + more

Check your entitled to you Child Tax Credits

Some Councils offer FREE reusable nappies and/or Incentives

Free baby on board badge from C2C

FREE Money off vouchers/Coupons from Johnson & Johnson
Community Updates


Top comments
We went down this route, having a kid to get all the free stuff on offer, but believe me, not worth it, biggest money pit I ever, 6 years later I have never had a proper nights sleep or a relaxing holiday and reduced to a barely functioning alcoholic. Oh, how I curse these deals.....
1. I second ignoring most advice people choose to give you before giving birth. Listen and take it in but follow your own baby. Yours will have TOTALLY different needs and habits to anyone else. What works for someone else will not neccassarily work for you.

2. You will be a first time mum/dad snob ie only buying brand new items, branded goods etc. But once in a while try other own brand things like nappies etc. You may find some are just as good but without the price tag.

3. You don't need a top and tail containter - or a baby bath. The real thing will do.

4. You don't need the full 'travel system' when it comes to buying buggies etc. A buggy and maybe a carry cot but that's it.

5. Baby Jogger City Mini - best buggy I have ever owned. You can fold and open with one hand.

6. Your relationship will be last of all priorities. Ride it through - it does get better once you all find your own routine. Sleep deprivation is a killer but hang on in there.

7. NCT is worth doing and was invaluable for the first year for me, there were 8 of us with the same thing in common and helped each other out all the time.

8. If something doesn't 'feel' right then go with your instinct and see your doctor. Don't wait or ask other people for their opinon.

9. Organise yourself and your home as much as you can before getting heavily pregnant - by 7 months I found it very difficult to walk any more than 10 mins anywhere. I pictured my month of maternity leave that I would be out buying things and doing lots of different things, I couldn't even walk to the bathroom!

10. Gap newborn/1st year elasticated/stretchy socks were the only ones that EVER stayed ON.

There are so many more things, just thinking at the top of my head, not sure if it helps.

Have a wonderful and very happy journey to those wishing to conceive or are already pregnant.
I am completely new to all of this, so it couldn't have come at a better time! Thank you
fantastic just what I need for my friend who expects her first baby
thank you thank you thank you

Don't forget If dad does a runner … Don't forget If dad does a runner

Also TAMBA club if you have a multiple pregnancy like me! Twins!
Surely this should be in misc
Now if only I could get pregnant

EDIT: I should probably point out, I'm a Man and my little joke was taken a little differently. And no, I'm not planning on a baby any time soon.
Edited by: "M0nk3h" 24th Jan 2017
Best info I was given - don't buy the things everyone else tells you that you need, work it out for yourself as every baby is different

Now if only I could get pregnant

Have pregnacare conception tablets for some months and check when you are mostly ovulated ( there is a calender online for this you type last period etc) good luck
And the most important of all the things, please do not stop taking folic acid till your delivery. Better to take pregnacare because it has all you need during your pregnancy.
Good luck.
Great bit of info for all parent to bes.
I know you would all come to know about the do's and do nots but i still feel that i should tell you that you should pay every bit of attention to the movements of the baby. Never ignore the baby not being as active as he usually is.
Always follow your instincts and do not shy away from calling the hospital straight away. It is always better to be safe than sorry. If at all any of you have any questions please feel free to ask.
Just in case anyone is contemplating / are already going through Ivf treatment....check with your employer as most (of the bigger) companies allow an additional 2 weeks paid time off at embryo transfer give it the best chance ....
Having kids is easy.
Nice one thanks for putting it all together, have some heat

everything else on this thread is great. well done !
Edited by: "magicmagicj" 23rd Jan 2017
Informative, Well done!!
Pregnacare is a massive expensive con. Just eat well and take folic acid. Save the money to buy daddy beers.
great info. May be worth pointing out that (from memory) the law uses the word 'reasonable' in relation to paid time off for ante-natal appointments for the mother. This is most likely relevant where an employee works part time yet appointments always seem to fall in working hours - of course this could the only time the maternity department has available in which case it would be fine.

Fathers of babies born now may also be entitled to shared parental leave which could be particularly useful if the fathers employer pays enhanced ShPL pay and the mother was not planning on returning to work.
What happens if u get sick during mat leave? My mate has fractured both her legs and is 4 months into mat leave!
Aldi, asda, & tesco baby event now on, great time to stock up on essentials like nappies etc
They still do that thing where you get some freebee packs? But the people come and try to take pictures and charge stupid prices as the mum is laid up in bed looking awful.. lol

Edit - looks like it…ack
Edited by: "dezontk" 23rd Jan 2017
Not to do with pregnancy but don't forget about marriage tax....

Are you married or in a civil partnership? If so you may be entitled to a £432 tax break called the marriage tax allowance. Yet 3.1 million of the 4.2 million eligible couples are still missing out. It's free money, so worth checking.

Read up

and apply

Simple as that!!

Now if only I could get pregnant

Speak to your doctor if you've been trying for a year or thereabouts, so they can start ball rolling for any investigations that may be necessary

All the very, very best


What happens if u get sick during mat leave? My mate has fractured both … What happens if u get sick during mat leave? My mate has fractured both her legs and is 4 months into mat leave!

Here's some info
We went down this route, having a kid to get all the free stuff on offer, but believe me, not worth it, biggest money pit I ever, 6 years later I have never had a proper nights sleep or a relaxing holiday and reduced to a barely functioning alcoholic. Oh, how I curse these deals.....
Giving birth hurts
Don't for get NCT and Jack and Jill sales. Why buy New when barely used goes for pennies second hand.
When they give you many, many little brochure/magazines about parenting and babies - flick through them (rather than just chucking them!). There's tons of money off vouchers (like £5 off a £15 baby clothing spend in Tescos etc) and free baby food later on. Agree with OP - worth doing Boots, Emmas Diary and Bounty packs as you do get a few nappies, wipes, mini Johnsons products and mini trial versions of nappy creams etc. Sometimes a branded towel, baby socks, spoon or food packs later on.

Only other piece of advice I would give is - if your soles of your feet itch or palms of your hands itch in late pregnancy get your bloods checked for OC (Obstetric Choleostasis) - not a lot is generally known about this as it's a fairly recent find, but it's really, really important even if you only have a morning of itching (as I did). Happy ending for me but isn't always. Worth knowing about.
Also point out that mums can share their maternity with dads, either both together (but only one will recieve payment) or mum goes back to work early dad can take some paid time off.

Classed as shared parental leave - more info here…iew
Edited by: "Caroline_1993" 23rd Jan 2017

Now if only I could get pregnant

Try seven seas trying for a baby, cant recommend these highly enough. One tablet a day.
Sign up to hip baby club for baby weaning freebies & samples
The £200 pounds worth of vouchers is only on certain products and more of a gimmick for example £5 off a tommy tippee machine
Any single pregnant ladies out there want to share their maternity / paternity leave with me ?
I'm such a misery guts When I saw this thread my first reaction was to suggest links to The Miscarriage Association and SANDS.

Back in the day, Gordon Brown would chuck you a cold hard £500, no grubbing around after discount vouchers for us, we went straight out and bought a free bugaboo
WRT child tax credit bare in mind they will only backdate by a month. Therefore even if you may be over the household salary limit, it may be worth applying anyway and repaying it.

This was the advice of my accountant and since I file a self return every year anyway it had little impact on me. But it is worth considering for anyone else who's household income may vary (for example Mrs may decide to take longer maternity leave, you may not be on fixed hours, commission related pay, etc).
I did a bunch of the bounty box stuff for the last kid, and am now not as keen to sell my child's info to marketers. Not sure why I changed my feelings on free stuff.
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