What should you pack in your hospital bag when you have a baby? Advice for expectant and new mums.
I’m continuing my series aimed at expectant and new mums with some help on what should you pack in your hospital bag when you have a baby.
Lots of people will chip in with ideas, some whacky and some sensible.
And a good place to start is the maternity book you are given at your first midwife appointment.
It becomes a bible of all the information about you and your pregnancy.
But it also includes helpful information about things like diet and your hospital bag.
Many women don’t know this is in there, and so feel at a loss as to know what to put in said bag.
I have based this on my own experience and have asked lots of friends and other new mums what they found helpful to pack.
My list for expectant mums of what you should pack goes like this:
• Thick sanitary pads – these are a must for after birth.
• Big, comfy, dark coloured pants – the comfier and bigger the better.
• Nighties or oversized PJs – you might be a PJ wearer at home, but I found a nightie much more comfortable so there was less material around the point of baby exit! Plus, you might know you are having, or end up having a c-section – so you do not want a tight waistband or one at all around your middle.
• Cotton sports or feeding bras. Whether you are for, against or unsure about breast feeding – one thing is for sure, you are going to want those puppies to be as comfortable as possible when your milk comes in!
• Lip balm. Gas and air, hospital drugs and air conditioning will all dry out your lips. Not only that, but even if you want to stay hydrated, the physicality of birth often means you don’t get chance to drink what you should, and you can become really dehydrated. This makes your lips super dry.
• No more than 4 baby outfits. This is tough as you will probably have built up quite the adorable collection. But you shouldn’t take up all the room in your bag remember, not suitcase, with a fashion parade for he or she. This is easier said than done. But pick four (babies can poo and be sick a lot), so that you have a change or two. Your partner or family members can always bring more if you are going to stay in hospital longer. Infact they will, expect gifts from any visitors!
• Hair ties or bobbles – you might not have your hair up when you go into hospital. But if it’s annoying you and you want it out of the way you will want a bobble!
• Music – you can take your own playlist into hospital. Everyone gives birth in a private room, so if you want to play music or a specially prepared playlist through your phone or small portable speaker, go for it. Whatever helps and makes your birth your own.
• Snacks for your birthing partner. You may not feel like eating during and after birth (though think of it as a marathon and eat complex carbs at the start of labour if you can.) But we often forget about our husband/partner/birthing partner. They will be by your side for maybe many hours, so a flapjack might come in handy!
• Phone charger or camera.
This brings me to my last tip. It’s not about your bag, it’s about you and your precious time with your new baby.
In many hospitals you’ll find a ‘photography company’ visiting your bedside hours after birth.
I’ve always found this a bit intrusive. They take pictures of your newborn and you either want them or you don’t.
They can be quite costly, and you will be sleep deprived and full of hormones.
So have the confidence to say whether you want them or not and just take your own pictures on your own phone if you don’t.
Trust me – you will take a lot. So, make sure your phone doesn’t run out of battery!
And there I can help, without adding any pressure!