Hospital bag for pregnancy
What to pack for hospital?
If you are in your last few weeks of pregnancy, now is the time to pack your maternity bag for the hospital. It is a good idea to have your hospital bag packed and ready by the time you reach 36 weeks of pregnancy since your baby can be born any time between 37 and 42 weeks. Even if you are planning a home birth you may still want to have a maternity bag prepared in case there is an unexpected change in circumstances.
Check what your hospital provides and what you need to bring in yourself. You may want to include a few items to create a comfortable and more personal environment, such as a pillow or a picture. Just remember that the space next to your bed, especially on the postnatal ward, is limited so you may have very little storage space.
Below is a maternity bag checklist of the essential items for yourself and your newborn baby.
- Maternity notes and birth plan
- Personal belongings, eg: music, massage oil, pillow, camera, loose change, mobile phone
- For labour: lip balm, dextrose tablets, flannel/wipes and socks
- Soap, shampoo, hairbrush, toothbrush, toothpaste
- Other toiletries
- Maternity pads/sanitary pads
- Disposable or ‘old’ knickers
- Nightwear, preferably with buttons down the front for breastfeeding
- Dressing gown
- Slippers/flip flops
- Comfortable clothing
- Breast pads
- Cotton wool
- Nappies - newborn size 1
- 5 vests
- 5 baby grows
- Scratch mittens
- Bottles and milk if bottle feeding
Father or birthing partner
Fathers and/or birthing partners may also want to arrange a bag with a few toiletries, something to eat/drink or a book/game to keep them occupied. It is sometimes necessary to have parking money at hand and it will help to make sure you know how to fit the baby’s seat, if you are travelling home by car.