What to pack in your hospital bag: mum, baby & partner
Waiting for spontaneous labour can be an anxiety-inducing few weeks. Having your hospital bag packed early can help ease some of the stress so you know you can grab-and-go when it's time to make the trip to the hospital or birthing centre.
Similarly, if you've got a planned section, or induction booked in, the last thing you want to be worrying about is making sure you've remembered clean undies, so keep reading to find out some of the essential items you'll want to make sure you've packed in advance.
There are a couple of ways you can organise you hospital bag for birth. Some people like to go with a bag for each person: mum, baby, and partner. Whereas another option is to have a bag for pre and post-birth.
To help you get organised, we've listed out everything you might need for each person at the hospital, keeping everything pre-birth at the top of the list, and the post-birth items underneath. Remember you may not want or need all of these items, depending on whether you're having a winter or summer baby, your planned (or unplanned!) length of stay in hospital, and your birthing preferences. But you can use it as a rough guide.
What to pack in mum's bag
Magazines or books (especially if booked for an induction/section)
Nightie, baggy t-shirt, crop top/bra (for labouring in)
Flannel (great as a cold compress during the later stages of labour)
Lavender oil (great stress reliever)
Other massage oils
Headphones and phone (for listening to music, or positive birth affirmations)
Scrunchie and headband
What to pack for after birth
Baggy clothes and pyjamas
Nursing bras (if choosing to nurse)
Button down shirts/pyjamas (if choosing to nurse)
Large comfy underwear
Toiletries such as:
Shampoo and conditioner
Micellar water for a quick freshen up
Bedew almond oil cleanser (my personal favourite face wash)
Makeup (if you fancy it!)
Toothbrush and toothpaste
Contact lens cleaner and storage case
Flipflops/sandals for the showers
Peppermint capsules or oil (great for post-birth trapped wind)
What to pack in baby's bag
3 or more vests (long and short-sleeved depending on the weather forecast)
3 or more sleepsuits
Blanket (or two). Remember not to overdress your baby for the car journey home. Cover with blankets instead of padding them out in thick outerwear
Cotton pads or sensitive water-wipes
Bottle-feeding kit (pre-made bottles are great for hospital stays)
Colostrum syringes (if you've pre-expressed or would like to during your hospital stay)
What your birthing partner should pack
A copy of your birth plan
Phone and charger
Change of clothes
Change of underwear
Snacks and drinks
A post-birth plan of action (who should they call first?!)
No matter whether you pack at 20 weeks or 38 weeks. Having an idea of what you need to bring can help check one thing off of the list of things to do before baby arrives. I do wonder whether we can truly ever be ready for the birth of a baby but having some of the essentials in place can help make the process that little bit easier.
Good luck with the birth of your baby and if you're interested in any of our newborn photography packages please do get in touch!