There are so many milestones that a pregnant mother will experience. Some of them are exciting, such as your baby's first little kicks and the first time you hear your little one's heartbeat. Others are not so pleasant, such as morning sickness and early contractions. One of the most exciting thoughts that I'm sure every pregnant woman thinks of is the day they get to finally meet their baby. While you wait for that day, it may be wise to start packing your hospital bag. There are many hospital bag essentials that you should pack, and today I'm going to give you a list of things you should pack in your delivery bag.
The purpose of a hospital bag is so that you have everything you need ready to go for when the moment comes when you go into labor. Some of the hospital bag essentials are for your newborn baby, but a lot of it is also for you. It is important that you have everything ready so that you don't have to rush at packing a delivery bag while you are in labor. If you have been wondering about what you should put in your hospital bag, this article will hopefully answer all your questions.
Hospital Bag Essentials: Prep For Baby Checklist
To begin packing your hospital bag, start by choosing what you'll want to bring for your baby. There are so many different hospital bag essentials for your baby that you'll want to pack. Here are some ideas.
An Outfit For Your Baby
Although the hospital will provide an outfit for your baby, you may want to bring along an outfit for your little one. If you don't know the gender of your child yet, bring along something that is neutral-colored. You may want to bring along a couple of different sizes of clothes since you probably don't know how big your baby is going to be.
A Car Seat
Make sure you have the car seat ready for when you drive your baby home. Make sure it is a car seat that is approved for infants. You should have the base properly installed in your car. Most hospitals won't let you go home if you don't have a car seat. Besides, it is unsafe to travel with your baby if you don't have a car seat.
Diapers and Wipes
The hospital should provide diapers, but if you are wanting organic or chemical-free diapers, you should bring your own diapers. Bring along some other supplies as well, such as wipes, shampoo for your baby's first bath, and any other supplies your baby may need.
Pack a blanket for your little one so that he or she doesn't get cold. Even if your baby won't need it in the hospital, you may want to wrap it around your little one on the ride home.
Hospital Bag Essentials: Items To Pack For Yourself
After you have packed for your baby, it is time to start packing for yourself. While not all of these items are essential, a lot of them are good to have. If you have anything else that you'd like to pack in your hospital bag, feel free to add it in. You want to be as comfortable as possible when at the hospital.
Pack some slippers in your hospital bag so that you stay comfortable all through and after labor. Make sure you choose slippers that fit you perfectly. The last thing you want are slippers that are too tight or loose. Also, bring along some flip-flops for when you take a shower.
A Robe Or Comfortable Pajamas
Along with your slippers, you'll want to pack something comfy to wear either during or after labor. If you aren't going to wear the hospital gown that the hospital provides, consider wearing a robe or some other loose outfit. Remember that labor can be messy, so be prepared for your clothes to get ruined. As for after labor, you may want some comfy yoga pants and a loose T-shirt. Pajamas may also work well. Also, don't forget to pack something that you'll want to wear home. Postpartum clothes are a great option.
A Camera Or Phone (With A Charger)
You will most likely want to capture some pictures of your baby after he or she is born, so remember to pack a camera with you. If your phone takes pictures, you could bring that instead. Remember to bring a charger if you have a phone. You certainly don't want your phone to lose its battery.
While you may not be up for putting on your makeup, you may still want to freshen yourself up after labor. After all, you want to look nice for when visitors come or when you take your photos. Makeup-removers are great to have, as they remove any makeup you have on and they cleanse your skin. Be sure to choose the kind of makeup-remover that doesn't require you to rinse your face. The purpose of the makeup-remover is that you can cleanse yourself while you are in bed. Bring along a mirror so that you can easily see what you are doing. If you think you'll be up for it, you can pack some makeup with you.
In addition to bringing makeup-removers and makeup, don't forget to bring a toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, a brush, and other necessities. Bring along some moisturizing lotion too. Your skin can become very dry during labor, so make sure you bring along some lotion to moisturize your skin.
If you will be breastfeeding your baby, you'll want to remember to pack a nursing bra in your delivery bag. Although a nursing bra isn't necessary for breastfeeding, it makes life a whole lot easier. Instead of you having to take off your shirt, all you have to do is unclip your bra so that your baby can nurse. A nursing top is also a good item to pack in your bag. If you'd like some more privacy, consider packing a nursing cover.
You probably won't feel like eating during labor, but after labor, you probably will. Pack some snacks that won't go bad, such as crackers, chips, or trail mix.
Your Birth Plan And Notebook
If you haven't written your birth plan, now is the time to do it. A birth plan is a simple, clear, one-page statement of your preferences for the birth of your child. It allows everyone who will be involved with the birth to know exactly what to do. Things to write down include who you want to be there for the birth, if you want skin-to-skin contact, any preferred positions you want during birth, and anything else you think you would like to happen when delivering your baby. Prepare for the unexpected, such as if you need a C-section done. Write down things like "If a cesarean becomes necessary...", and finish the sentence with your preferences. Once you have your birth plan ready, pack it in your delivery bag.
A notebook is also a good item to pack. It allows you to write down things such as the details of your labor and delivery. You may want to use the same notebook that you will be using for keeping track of your baby's feedings. Years from now, this notebook will be treasured by both you and your child.
Music, A Book, Or A Magazine
Having something to do during labor will help the time go by quicker. Music, a book, or a magazine are all great items to pack in your delivery bag. Make sure the book or magazine is something you are interested in, yet not too hard to understand. You want something that is easy to read. If you wear glasses, make sure you bring them along with you. If you plan on listening to music, bring along an iPod with earphones.
Hospital Bag Essentials If You Are Having A C-Section
If you will be having a C-section, plan on packing most of the same hospital bag essentials that I went over above. Here are some things you should pack and the reasons why you should pack them.
I mentioned slippers earlier in this article, but slippers are especially important if you will have a C-section. After a C-section, you won't want to bend over and put on socks or shoes. Slippers are easy to get on and they are very comfortable.
A Loose Robe Or Gown
A loose robe or gown is recommended because pants can hurt your stomach after a C-section. Although some people have said they were fine with wearing pants and leggings, you'll probably feel most comfortable in something not pressing against your stomach.
Something To Do During And After Labor
Although moms who give birth vaginally generally stay in the hospital for about two days, the C-section recovery timeline has you staying in the hospital for approximately four days. This means that you will have plenty of extra time, so be sure to pack something for you to do. Books, magazines, music, and games are great items to pack.
Bleeding is common after a C-section, so make sure you pack extra-absorbent pads. An alternative is to pack absorbent disposable underwear.
Copies Of Your Cesarean Birth Plan
A cesarean birth plan is similar to a regular birth plan. In it, you will write everything about how you want your cesarean birth to be. You may want to write about whether you want the doctors to talk to you during the surgery or not. Many mothers like all the details, but others don't like to know everything. Consider writing down what you want to know, such as when your baby is getting pulled out, and what you don't want to know, such as when they will stitch you back up. In addition to writing these details, let the doctors know how you want to be cared for after delivery. Also, write down if you want any medications or not. Make sure you make copies of your cesarean birth plan. You may want to give the birth plan to multiple nurses.
When To Pack A Hospital Bag
Now that you know about the hospital bag essentials, you may be wondering when to pack a hospital bag. You can begin packing your hospital bag at any time you want. It is recommended to have it packed by 36 weeks. Even if you plan on having a home birth, you'll want to have a hospital bag packed so that you are ready to go if there is an emergency.
Packing a hospital bag can be an exciting time during your pregnancy. You know that your baby is coming into the world soon and you'll soon be able to meet him or her. However, you may also be wondering what you should pack. In this article, I went over the top hospital bag essentials that you should include in your delivery bag. These hospital bag essentials will help you get through delivery smoothly. I hope today's article on hospital bag essentials has helped you understand more about packing your hospital bag.
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