Which Hospital bag should I use?
You probably won’t need to buy a special bag to take into hospital with you, I took three bags all together, one for before and after labour, and another for baby. One piece of advice i would give to anyone, is if they have a Trolley Bag to use that instead, I wish I had thought of that before! In most cases your birth partner will be able to help with the bags, but with current restrictions changing all the time you may find yourself like me, having to go in to hospital on your own and you don’t want to be lugging a bunch of heavy bags behind you whilst in labour! Once your bag is packed leave it by the front door, and let your birth partner know where it is in case they need to grab it at last minute.
What essentials will I need for during labour?
Here’s a starting point for what you’ll need in labour:
- Birth Plan & Maternity Notes
- A comfy, loose outfit for labour. The HAPPY MAMA Delivery Gown was really soft and comfy, and great for breastfeeding and skin to skin contact.
- Book, Magazines, Music, something for the early stages of labour.
- Phone Charger and Plug
- Portable Mist Fan to keep you cool.
- Healthy snacks and drinks.
- Babycare TENS Machine if you intend to use one, i would certainly recommend this, it really helped me in the first stage of labour and not all hospitals will provide one. You don’t have to buy one either, I used Elle TENS 7 Week Hire and was impressed with the service, you receive the machine a couple of weeks before your due date, and you can test it out beforehand. They also allow a few weeks if your baby is overdue which mine was, once you have finished you just remove the batteries and pads then pop it in the pre-paid envelope they provide for you to return.
- Nursing Pillow if you have one.
- A wash bag with toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, soap, hair bands, shampoo, etc. Flip Flops are also handy in case you will be using a shared bathroom on the ward. I treated myself to a BirthBag Essentials Set, you will have all of these items in your house already, but the handy little sachets are so much easier for packing.
- Aromatherapy oils if you have been using these during your pregnancy
- Birthing Ball if they do not provide one at the hospital, you should be able to check this with your midwife.
- Any medication you’re taking.
- Cash for car park or vending machine
What essentials shall I pack for after the birth?
Once you’ve been through the hard part and you get to relax with your new arrival, you’ll need a whole lot of other things such as;
- Large Maternity Pads, and lots of them!
- Breast Pads
- Dressing Gown & Slippers
- Going home outfit, I recommend some comfy leggings and a maternity top
- iPad or tablet.
- Maternity Nightie or pyjama top
- Nipple Cream if you are planning to breastfeed
What will my new baby need?
Remember, your new baby will need a bag too! They’ll need;
- Bodysuits or vests
- Hats as they will be wearing these most of the time whilst in hospital
- Scratch Mittens
- Organic Cotton Pads (I would recommend using pads instead of cotton wool balls)
- Newborn Size Nappies
- Blankets or Swaddle
- Musling Squares
- Car Seat – make sure you know how to fit the car seat beforehand.
Will my birth partner need anything?
They may be with you in the hospital for a long time, possibly even overnight, so they will need a bag too. Things that they may need are;
- Change of clothes
- Snacks and Juice
- Wash Bag
- Cash for Car Park or vending machine
- Books, iPad, Magazine
Wherever you’re planning to give birth, keep a list of important numbers in your purse. You’ll need to include:
- the hospital or midwifes phone number
- your partner or birth partner’s phone number
- your hospital reference number (on your card or notes).
I hope you have found this list useful and it has provided you with some guidance during this magical time!
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