WHAT SHOULD YOU PUT IN YOUR HOSPITAL BAG?
With such an exciting chapter about to begin for you and your baby, it is always a good idea to prepare in advance.
It is recommended that you start packing for your due date about two weeks before. Your baby’s big arrival will have you flustered, and you will be thanking yourself for being well-prepared!
HOSPITAL BAG CHECKLIST FOR MUM
- Two Front-Opening Nightdresses Having a front-opening nightdress will allow for quick and easy breastfeeding. The flow of the nightdress will not restrict your movement or cause any discomfort either. Plus, it is always nice to throw on some clean clothes to feel slightly more refreshed.
- Slippers or Flip-Flops Avoid the cold floors with your trusty slippers or flip-flops. These will come in handy, if you are wanting to stretch your legs and roam the hospital hallways.
- Warm socks, 1 or 2 pairs Most hospitals will provide you with socks to use during and after labour. It is always nice to wear socks of your own that you know are comfortable and will keep you warm.
- A few pairs of comfy underwear If you’re not a fan of the hospital mesh underwear then it is recommended that you bring a few pairs of your own.
- Heavy-duty sanitary pads After birth, you will experience some bleeding, and it is always better to come prepared. The hospital will provide you with some sanitary pads, but bringing extra will help you avoid you having to ask for more or having to wait. These are also handy to keep at home for when you’re back from the hospital.
- A Dressing Gown Or Shawl Choose a loose and comfortable gown to pack into your hospital bag. The looser the sleeves, the better - this will make it easier for the nurses to check your blood pressure. Packing a gown will keep you warm and will be helpful, if you would like to stretch your legs around the hospital.
- Breast Pads, Nursing Bras For Breastfeeding And Cream/Vaseline (For Tender Nipples) Having the right nursing bra will help you in times of breastfeeding. Pack ones that are comfortable and that will support your tender breasts. The breast pads will absorb any leaks that may occur once your milk has come in. Packing nipple cream or a box of plain vaseline, could help you if you find your nipples to be tender and chapped after breastfeeding.
- Phone And Charger Pack your phone and charger to stay connected with your loved ones. Having your phone can help pass the time and taking all those newborn baby pictures will drain your battery quickly!
- Toiletries And Cosmetics Keep your toiletries neat and simple - pack the essential personal items to avoid cluttering up your room. Pack essentials, like your toothbrush, face wash, body lotion or massage oil, and lip balm to keep you feeling refreshed.
- A comfortable outfit to wear home A comfortable outfit will help your journey home dramatically! Pack a loose top, loose pants and something to keep you warm for the most comfort.
- Hospital File Or Notes Keep a file of your hospital admissions, letters from your doctor and any other notes that would help your birthing journey. It will provide peace of mind knowing that all of your necessary documents are all together and organised.
- Journal Or Notepad Packing a journal or notepad is a great tool to have once your baby has arrived. It will help you keep track of feeding patterns, sleeping times, and nappy changes.
- Birth Plan (If You Have One) Your birth plan will help the doctors and nurses assist and guide you along your birthing routine. It will also help your partner stay on track and know what you need in terms of support.
HOSPITAL BAG CHECKLIST FOR BABY
- Three Full-Body Onesies You should pack extra onesies for your baby in order to keep them comfortable and fresh. Choose the ones that fasten in the front to assist with easy nappy changing. There now a number of onesies that fasten around the baby’s belly button, as it will take some time to heal and, well, fall off. Getting a pack of this kind will work best.
- Baby wipes designed for delicate newborn skin A few diapers will need changing once your baby arrives. Packing baby wipes designed for delicate newborn skin will be handy for a gentle touch on the skin, which will help the baby avoid any skin irritations.
- Ten nappies for newborns You will need a few nappies for changing. It is recommended that you pack a few preemie nappies too, incase your baby is smaller than expected.
- Hat and blanket A hat and blanket will keep your baby warm. The hospital may provide you with one of their blankets, but packing your own is great for extra tucking and warmth on your way home.
- Going-home outfit A fresh outfit for your baby to go home in should include socks or booties, mittens, a hat, a babygrow or onesie, and weather permitting items like an extra jersey. Make sure that the outfit is comfortable and easy to manoeuvre for when you put your baby in its carseat.
HOSPITAL BAG CHECKLIST FOR YOUR PARTNER
- Phone And Charger During labour or once the baby has been born, your partner will want to call loved ones with the good news.
- Snacks And Drinks Labour can be long and there may be some times where you have to wait. Keeping snacks packed can give your partner that extra boost when they are starting to get hungry and to avoid the back and forth from the hospital cafe. Drinks, especially some with sugar or even some energy drinks might also be allowed in case either your partner or you run out of steam during the labour hours. Talk to your doctor about this beforehand and ideally ask them to send you a letter explaining that you can have these drinks so you could show this to your doctor and nurses during labour.
- Camera And Charger You will need to document this momentous occasion with a few pictures and videos. Keep the charger packed to avoid any mishaps of missing that perfect picture due to a flat camera.
- Change Of Clothes And Some Toiletries After some time at the hospital and going into labour with you, your partner will want to freshen up with a change of clothes and toiletries. These are handy for births that take some time.