Welcoming your new addition to the family is always a memorable experience. The time you carried your precious cargo for 9 months, days and moments leading up to the preparation, and finally the birthing day are all erasable moments in a mother’s life. Because of this, the preparation required can be overwhelming as there’s much to check off your list.
To help you prepare weeks before your anticipated birthing date, here’s a list of items that you need in your hospital bag:
- Hospital Bag
You need a hospital bag to put the products required in it. You may already have a bag that you can use, however, after reading the list of items required in the bag, you may have to reconsider. This is because the bag has to be big enough to fit items, compartmentalized, and one that’s designed in a way that’s easy to access during the hospital stay.
Depending on the hospital room you’ll be in, you may have closet space and shelves. However, if you don’t have space to unpack, an easy-access bag is crucial to avoid constant packing and re-packing while trying to keep your insides from falling out.
- Baby Gift Box
You can welcome your new baby into the world by preparing a gift box of essentials, which contain bath towels, onesies, mittens, hats, baby oil, baby lotion, and baby bath soap for example.
The Green Mumma provides gift boxes and products that are eco-friendly and gentle to your baby’s crisp and fresh skin. An eco-friendly gift box for your baby is a wonderful way to begin introducing your baby to sustainable products, which is a practice your child will appreciate in life.
- Nappies and Wipes
Once your baby enters the world and exits the perfect habitat that they enjoyed, nappies will immediately come into effect. Thus, your hospital bag needs to have sufficient nappies to last the entire hospital stay. To be safe, just bring a whole box as you don’t know how often your little bundle’s bowels will be at work.
You can explore the different types of nappies that are friendly to your baby’s skin, such as cloth nappies. Take note that wet wipes will be needed to clean your baby before changing them into a new nappy.
- Baby Blankets and Receivers
Once your baby is born, they’ll be wrapped in a receiver. Once the first wash takes place and they’ll get dressed, a blanket may be wrapped around them.
The receiver is important to place on your lap or over your shoulder for your baby’s drool and spit-up. Visitors coming to see the baby can also hold the baby when they’re wrapped in a receiver. This is to avoid direct contact with the newborn. At this point, your visitors must be sanitized and, hopefully, are familiar with the no kissing baby rule.
- Feeding Bottles
Even if you plan to breastfeed, you can still pack a few bottles for your baby.
The nature of birth is that the process is unpredictable. Your baby might have difficulty latching, you might not be in the position to feed, you may be separated with your baby, you might not produce milk, or you might just be downright depleted. In such cases, babies are fed from the bottle or a syringe.
Your hospital bag should have the documentation that’s required. The requirements vary from each place and you have to find all the records that are expected from you.
Documentation may include birthing records, payment slips, scans, and doctor notes that you may have received during pregnancy check-ups and consultations.
- Maternity Pants
Stretchable maternity pants are comfortable for post-birth wearing since these are aerated, don’t stick to your skin, and are light-weight.
The last feeling you need is the feeling of heavy or itchy material after having gone through a process that leaves your sore and, in some cases, injured. For example, if you undergo a C-section, the pants can stretch over your wound without causing any discomfort.
Furthermore, you can find sustainable, re-usable maternity pants that’ll contribute to the resourcefulness of your budget, which may be stretched during the process of pregnancy and birth.
- Maternity Pads
Blood loss is to be expected for at least a few weeks after giving birth. Although it may feel as if it’s for eternity, the blood loss will stop. In the meantime, pads will be your best friend.
Maternity pads are different from regular sized pads since it’ll be able to retain more liquid. Cloth pads are a resourceful option as you’ll only need to wash these and re-use over the period that you experience blood loss.
- Nursing Bra
While you’re in the hospital, you may not need to wear a bra because why add on to the physically uncomfortable sensation of giving birth? However, on the day of discharge, you can wear a nursing bra that provides easy access for your baby.
A nursing bra has an opening in the front, which means that you don’t have to lift your bra, making you feel uncomfortable. This way, your baby can comfortably feed, too.
- Nursing Pads
Nursing pads help protect your bras from leaking. Leakage can affect your tops, which means that you have to constantly change attires. To avoid constant purchasing of these, you can purchase reusable pads.
- Massage Oil
Slipping in a massage oil in your bag means when you have quiet moments, your close family members or friends can give you a foot massage or a back rub.
After all, you would’ve experienced a physically, mentally, and emotionally birthing journey that requires healing and as much relaxation as you can get.
You’ll need comfortable slippers for your room. Slippers are easy to wear as you may not have the strength to wear shoes that require tying or pulling.
You may want to pack a separate pair of slippers for showering purposes.
A bathrobe is one of the most comfortable attire to wear during your hospital stay. It makes sanitary changing less complicated and you don’t have to spend time taking off pieces of clothes for doctor examinations.
If you have a C-Section wound, you’re guaranteed that a robe will not disturb the area compared to a pair of pants or leggings.
- Feeding Pillow
A feeding pillow is a C shaped pillow that fits around your waist. The purpose of this pillow is to place your baby in the horizontal position on the pillow, making the feeding process more comfortable. Your baby can also sleep on your lap while on the pillow.
In the case that you’ve had a C-section, the pillow doesn’t interfere with your wound as it’ll be placed right above the incision.
- Your Pillow
You need to be as comfortable as possible during your hospital stay. Packing your home pillows guarantees that you’re comfortable since hospital pillows can sometimes resemble a rock covered in cloth.
Bringing your pillow is also recommended as this gives a sense of familiarity in a foreign space, helping you relax.
- Toiletry Bag
You need to stack your toiletry bag with products that’ll help you freshen up during your stay in the hospital. Products to include in your toiletry bag are soap, toothpaste, lotion, essential oils for relaxation, wet wipes, hairbrush and comb, lip balm, and hair ties.
Natural-based products, such as coconut and lavender, will contain scents that may help you relieve anxiety and relax during fatigue periods.
You’re allowed to bring in snacks for the time that you spend in the hospital. You can bring in your favorite snacks while you look forward to the first meal that you’ll have post-birth.
After a laborious journey, snacks and meals may be one of the highlights during your hospital stay.
You may have a long wait between the time you enter the hospital and when the labor process begins. To keep you occupied, you can pack a book to read.
When the baby arrives, there will be quiet moments when they’ll be asleep and you don’t have visitors. You can fill in that time by getting lost in a story if you have the strength that is.
- Phone and Charger
Your phone can come in handy for communication purposes as well as entertainment. During those quiet moments, you can enjoy a chat, a show, or listen to music.
Your phone can also capture photos of your precious bundle and record memories of the special day.
- Going Home Attire
When you get discharged, you might feel like changing out of your bathrobe and into comfortable clothes. Loose-fitting clothes, such as t-shirt and baggy cotton sweatpants, are the better option for tight-fitting clothes.
If you’re breast-feeding, remember to pack a top that isn’t complicated for the baby to access. V-neck tops or dresses are recommended.
Your hospital bag is going to be full of essential items and products that make your hospital stay more comfortable. From your baby gift box, nappies, wipes, blankets, receivers, bottles, pants, pads, bras, massage oils, slippers, robes, pillows, toiletry bags, books, gadgets, documentation, books, gadgets, and a change of clothes, you must plan to avoid forgetting these important items.
A checklist is handy so you can write down all the products that are required, plan where you will access these, who can help you organize the bag, and how you’ll arrange these in your bag for easy access during the stay.