3 proudly Mzansi apps for first-time parents
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Becoming a first-time parent is an anxiety-induced journey with no map telling you which path to take.
I remember having sleepless nights months before my first-born was due. Do I have enough nappies? What if he doesn’t take to breastfeeding? The questions played on repeat in my head until I fell into an exhausted coma.
I’m not a fan of self-help books and manuals; I’m a firm believer in winging it. But when a friend suggested I get a copy of Baby Sense by Megan Faure and Ann Richardson, I thought: ‘why not, let’s give it a try’.
For the next year after my son’s birth, that book became my Bible of sorts and a lifesaver. It let me know if he was hitting all his milestones. How to sleep train him and wean him off the breast once I was back at work.
Back then, we didn’t have the wealth of resources we have now. It was either you buy a book or scout the internet for parenting blogs.
Now all the information is readily available by downloading an app, but how do you know which one to choose and if it will work for you? The key is to find one that is backed by real professional voices.
We’ve found three proudly SA apps that tick these boxes.
Developed by Baby Sense co-author Megan Faure, the locally-developed app offers innovative, science-based tech-enabled parenting. Faure is also the authority when it comes to childcare.
Recently shortlisted as a finalist for the UK App of the Year at the UK App Awards 2021, Parent Sense offers a holistic framework for baby care, helps you accurately track and analyse your baby’s sleep and feeding patterns and is packed with know-how and sage advice to get you safely through the unique minefield of baby’s first few years.
“Babies simply don’t have the communication capabilities that we as adults rely on for understanding. Instead, they are experiencing the world through their senses,” said Faure.
“Identifying your baby’s sensory personality helps you to know and understand them better. Your baby’s sensory personality drives sleep and feeding behaviours and impacts on developmental pace and successful weaning.”
Download it here: https://parentsense.app/
Developed by Mediclinic Southern Africa, Mediclinic Baby is user-friendly and free to use. It boasts a host of features and tools that don't only prepare parents-to-be for their new arrival but helps them in the early stages of their little ones' life.
- Vaccination reminders
- Track your baby's milestones
- Postnatal information
- Customisable baby profile
- Exclusive promotions and competition updates
Most arguably, the best thing about this app is the photo to the video function, which captures your growing belly and turns the images into a video of your nine-month journey. (With Facebook & YouTube Sharing).
Download it here: https://apps.apple.com/app/mediclinic-baby-pregnancy/id627879877?ls=1
Purity has taken a different approach to parenting apps by enabling first-time parents to journal their bundle of joy’s milestones and development. Yes, it also has expert baby advice and gives you access to 24-hour medical support.
What sets it apart from the others is that it offers guidance right up to the preschool years. You’d also be pleased to know that Purity’s panel of experts, compliments of Hello Doctor, include:
- a paediatrician
- a dietician
- a psychologist
- a gynaecologist
- a financial expert
- dad coach
While commenting on the launch of the app, Mpho Toolo – managing director of Tiger Brand's Baby Division – said: "This is the culmination of two years' work. We spent many hours talking to parents, trying to understand their challenges along the parenting journey."
"We also poured over local – as well as international – materials, aiming to see how these were providing the required assistance. We are extremely proud of the end product, and we trust that our parents will find that this is the answer they have been looking for.”