Whether it’s your first child or you have done it before when it comes to packing a hospital bag for mother and baby it’s good to check what is needed so here are a few tips to help you out. Even if you’re having a home birth it’s still good to have a hospital bag at the ready just in case for any reason you will need to go in. It’s also good to have the hospital bag at the ready by the time your 36 weeks just in case. Maybe get someone to double check your hospital bag or get them to pack it with you so you don’t miss anything. After your bag is packed keep it near the door or in the car if you can so you will be ready straight away.
Hospital Bag for Mum.
Your pregnancy folder as it has your pregnancy history which will be needed at the hospital.
Your birth plan so then the hospital will know what it is you want, if you have a few copies then you can give it to the mid wife and anyone else that is helping you so then you should get exactly what you wanted as your birth plan.
A dressing gown as you might be there for some time and you will want to be comfortable also if you need to go anywhere in the hospital it will come in handy, also after you give birth your dressing gown will come in handy if you need to go anywhere.
An old top or nightdress as labour can be quite messy especially if your holding your baby straight after they are born, so it would be better to wear something old and something that is easy to get on and off.
Your feet might get cold in labour and when on the ward, so you might want to pack some socks to keep your feet warm.
Slippers or flip flops You might want slippers so it’s more comfortable when walking around. You might want backless slippers so they will be easier to get on and off and so you don’t have to bend down and flip flops for in the shower.
Things to pass time with, so you might want to take something you enjoy like a book to read or maybe your phone to play games or to talk to someone to help pass the time, as sometimes it can be a bit of a wait for baby to arrive.
Phone charger in case you want to listen to music or take photos once baby is here, its best to keep your phone charged.
Earplugs and eye mask if baby isn’t ready to come yet then you might want to try and get some rest and it can be noisy on the labour ward so you might want to take ear plugs to help you sleep.
Your own pillow there will be pillows at the hospital, but some people prefer their own pillows and find them more comfortable so maybe pack your own as you’re going to want to be as comfortable as you can.
Massage oil or lotion Some people like there back rubbed or to have little massages when in labour so it might be nice to have a massage oil that you can use when pregnant, BUT make sure to check that you can use it when pregnant as some massage oils you can’t.
Birth Ball the hospital might have birth balls but you will need to check they have the right size for you or you can take your own, birth balls are meant to be a lot of help with labour also remember to bring a pump so your partner or a nurse can inflate it for you.
Lip Balm your lips can get very dry during labour so to stop them cracking you might want to take a lip balm.
Hairband or a clip when you’re in labour you will be hot and sweating so if you have long hair you might want to tie or clip it up so it’s out of your face.
Water Spray or sponge you will get very hot during labour so having a sponge for your forehead or water spray will help keep you cool.
Snacks and drink you need to stay hydrated and keep your energy up so having snacks and drinks is a good idea and you might be sometime in the hospital.
Things mum needs after labour
Something to wear going home if you don’t need to spend the night in hospital it will need to be loose and comfortable, possibly even still your maternity clothing as it will take a while for your tummy to go down.
Night wear After you have had baby you will need something loose and comfortable so maybe a night dress so it’s easy to go to the bathroom. If you are breast feeding, then you might want a night dress that does up from the front so you have easy access for feeding time. Even if you are meant to be going home the same day as having baby it would be best to pack a night dress just in case you need to stay in overnight.
Normal Bras or nursing bras I would recommend taking two or three bras if your breast feeding, then nursing bras if you’re not breast feeding and then normal comfortable bras as you will still be very sensitive.
Underwear I would suggest cheap, old disposable underwear after baby is born and I would recommend taking several pairs with you as they will get messy and make sure they are big enough for the maternity pads as they are bigger than standard sanitary pads. Cotton knickers can be helpful if you have had a caesarean as that won’t rub and irritate your wound.
Maternity Pads its best to take quite a few maternity pads as it can get quite messy and you want to keep yourself comfortable. They are more absorbent and softer than standard sanitary pads and after birth its normal to bleed quite a lot, so you might need to change every few hours but it will slow down within a few days.
Toiletries i.e. hairbrush, deodorant, tissues, hairclips or hair ties shampoo, conditioner, face wash, body wash moisturizer. You won’t need your big everyday toiletries unless you are staying in for a while so I would recommend buying the holiday size toiletries or the small empty bottles that you can put stuff into to save you space in your hospital bag and on your ward. You will sweat a lot more than you normally would after birth so don’t forget your deodorant. your skin will be dry after labour so don’t forget to pack moisturizer. You might also want a carrier bag for your dirty clothes.
More snacks and drink giving birth uses a lot of energy so best to have some snacks to keep your energy up and drinks to stay hydrated.
Hospital Bag for Partner
When you’re in labour you will want your partner with you, and they won’t want to miss anything so its best to pack them a few things as well, so they don’t have to leave.
Swim wear if you’re having a birth in the birthing pool then you might want partner in there for a bit with you to help with anything you need, so they will need swim wear.
Snacks and drinks, they might also get hungry so will also need snack and drinks as they will also need their energy to help you.
Camera to take photos so you have memories
Something to pass time maybe a book or play games on their phone.
Phone charger so they can capture the special moments and to let people know baby has arrived.
Clothes just in case you’re in hospital longer than expected or in case baby has an accident while being changed.
Spare contact lenses if they wear them as it can be a very long day so best to have some handy.
Small pillow just in case your partner wants to take a nap or just to be comfy so they might want to bring a pillow
Hospital Bag for Baby
Things to pack for baby
Two or three vest and sleepsuits, it’s best to use button-up sleepsuits and they are easy to get on and off baby. Or even better why not have baby dressed in style with a personalised baby grow.
Socks and hats babies get cold easy so it might be warm on your ward, but baby might still get cold so pack some hats and socks to keep baby warm cos even when you’re doing skin to skin baby can still wear the hat and socks
Baby Blanket the hospital might offer you a blanket but you might want to take your own personalised baby blankets just in case. You can use the blanket to cover you and baby when having skin to skin time and you will need to use the blanket when leaving the hospital.
Nappies new-born babies can go through 12 nappies in a day so you might want to pack double if you are staying in overnight.
Wipes when using baby wipes, I would recommend the ones that are sensitive to baby or you can use water and cotton balls, but it might feel a like it’s too much when you have just had a baby.
Muslin Square and bibs to use for cleaning up after baby. You can put these over your shoulder to stop the milk baby brought up and dribble from going on your clothes.
Going home outfit I would recommend something easy to get on baby so an all in one outfit and also recommend taking a jacket if it’s warm as it might be a bit chilly for baby and if its autumn or winter I would recommend packing a coat and booties or a selection of personalised baby clothes.
Car seat although this isn’t for the hospital bag it something you will need to take your baby home in, you should make sure you have the right car seat for your car and that it has been installed properly.