My hospital bag was part packed at 36 weeks and luckily so, as Maximus was born at 37 weeks and 5 days. A lot of first time mums aren’t sure of what they should be packing in the hospital bag (I just winged it). The idea is not to under pack or over pack, so below is a list of the main bits I packed. These are things that were needed and what I couldn’t have done without.
- Bath Towel – My hospital didn’t offer bath towels. After the birth I had a case of jelly legs and couldn’t have a shower, so instead I had some midwife sponge me down (you really do lose all dignity in child birth!). At that point I was too tired to care. I’d recommend taking a towel for your body and one for your hair.
- Toiletries – In other words your tooth brush, tooth paste, shampoo & conditioner and shower gel. Just remember that if you have had any stitches you wont be able to use any fragrance product down below. I highly recommend taking lip balm as labour leaves you with very dry lips, especially if you have been sucking on Gas and Air.
- Nightie/PJ’S– I made the huge mistake of only taking a nightie with me. In hindsight I should have taken a nightie for the labour and pyjamas for on the ward. I ended up having to wear a hospital gown which as we all know is not the most flattering garment.
- Socks– Every site I went on pre baby told me to pack a pair of socks as apparently child birth is a chilly business. I personally didn’t have this issue as my room was the perfect temp and I was a little preoccupied with the excruciating pain to think about my cold feet 🙂
- Sanitary Towels– You will need the nice thick maxi pads. I went over board and brought a few packs but didn’t end up using half of them. I think next time ill pack one or two and send my hubby out if I need any more.
- Entertainment– Be it a phone, kindle or a tablet, if you end up staying over night as I did then believe me you will not be sleeping. Danny was allowed to stay with me and I kindly let him have my bed to sleep. I was far too pumped up with adrenaline to contemplate any sleep.
- Knickers and Bras – An obvious thing to pack. I would include a nursing bra or two if you intend to breast feed.
- Money– You never know how long your going to be on the ward, you may need to top up parking or stock up on mags and high sugared treats. Some hospitals also charge if you need to purchase baby milk. Crazy to think would they really let your baby starve if you didn’t have the cash (Good Old NHS).
- Flip Flops– For in the shower, self-explanatory really.
- Vests – I would take maybe 4 of these in case baby has any accidents (Sick, poop or wee).
- Baby Gros– Same as above. You can always send your partner home if you are within travelling distance.
- Hat– It does get slightly chilly on the ward late in the night.
- Nappies/Sudocreme – I took a couple of size 1s and 2s (Newborn). My little warrior was born with chicken legs and we ended up using micro nappies for the first few weeks.
- Wipes- Its not really advised that you use wipes at all on a new born baby’s bum, their skin is very sensitive and quite stretchy. For all mums who have already given birth you will know that it is a very tricky business to change a baby’s first pooey meconium bum using cotton wool and water alone :). If you choose to use wipes from the off then you must make sure babies bum is completely dry before putting on your nappy or you run the risk of a bad case of nappy rash. I used Water wipes from the second or third week and this happened to me. Not nice for mum or baby.
- Snow Suit/Car suit– You must be very careful with your chosen snow suit (if having a winter baby). In the car seat you will need to make sure the straps are on tight enough.
- Car Seat – Whether you own a car or not you will need to have a car seat. I believe the hospital wont let you leave with your baby unless you have one.
- Baby bottles and Milk– I had naively thought that breast feeding my baby would come very naturally to both me and Max and it really didn’t. He was born with a slight tongue tie which made it difficult for him to latch. Make sure you are prepared for all scenarios.
I’m sure I have missed a few key items of my list. The above is the main gist of what you need.
I’m slightly sleep deprived right now so I think I can be excused.