Prepped to Perfection: 6 Tips to Ensure Your Babysitter Is Prepared for Anything

Leaving your child with a babysitter can be stressful, especially if it’s your first time. While it’s important to find someone you trust, it’s equally important to prepare your babysitter for anything that may occur. No one likes to think about emergencies. However, planning for the worst can ensure small issues don’t blow up into major problems. 

Even small things like knowing the best toddler formula to buy if you run out can make a world of difference to your babysitter. With all this in mind, here are six steps you can take to ensure your babysitter is equipped to handle any situation that may arise while you’re away.

1. Create a categorized list of emergency contacts

A list of emergency contacts is a great start. However, put yourself in the shoes of a babysitter trying to figure out who to call. They may not know who to call first or who is most likely to answer. So, break down your emergency contact list into easy-to-understand categories. 

Include details like who to call first, who to call if the first emergency contact doesn’t answer, and when certain people will be available. It’s worth including the numbers of trusted neighbors, close family members, and your pediatrician in case you’re not able to make it home quickly. You should also ensure your babysitter knows how to use your home phone or smartphone in case of an emergency.

2. Include instructions on how to handle emergencies

Provide your babysitter with clear instructions on what to do in case of a medical emergency, fire, or natural disaster. Check that they are certified in basic first aid, and leave written instructions for anything you think may be more complicated.

3. Create a list of must-know facts about your child

If your child has any health conditions, allergies, medications, or other important needs, let your babysitter know up-front. Provide them with a list of dos and don’ts, including food restrictions and routines, to ensure your child remains safe in your absence.

4. Do a safety audit of your home

Check that all door and window locks are working and that there are no hazardous items within reach of your child. It’s also good practice to check your smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and power outlets.

5. Write out the house rules

Moving beyond emergencies, it’s important to fill your babysitter in on any house rules you expect your child to follow. This will give your child a sense of comfort and continuity as their bedtime, meal schedule, and other important routines will be predictable. Both your child and the babysitter will benefit from this consistency.

6. Make your preferred communication level clear

Every parent is different, so you can’t expect your babysitter to magically know exactly how often you want them to be in touch with you. If you want regular check-ins with pictures to show you what your little one is up to, tell them. If you’re happy to just be contacted when issues arise, let them know. By establishing your expectations up front, you can feel confident that they’ll keep you in the loop and feel comfortable turning to you if they need help.

Leaving your child with a babysitter can be daunting, but if you follow these tips, your babysitter will be well-equipped to handle any situation that may arise. By providing clear instructions and ensuring they’re qualified to handle emergencies, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that your child is in good hands.

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