Things to pack in your hospital bag

Pregnancy was one of the most exciting times in my life. Yeah!  I was absolutely excited about being pregnant and obviously enjoying all the extra attention I started getting overnight !.  I was looking forward to the birth of my daughter right from the moment I felt her first kick in my tummy. From the fifth month of my pregnancy I started buying things for her and for me. By the time I finished my 7 month my hospital bag was packed and ready. I told you I was really excited!

There were a lot of little little things that I wish I packed and some I wish didn’t pack the first time. I learnt my lessons the first time and I was well stocked for my second delivery.  So I thought sharing my list would be quite helpful especially for the first time mammas! Here’s a list of all the things that I would recommend you pack in your hospital bag :

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FOR THE MOM :

    1. 3-4 comfortable pretty hospital/night gowns. Yes 3-4.  You never know when you are going to have those visitors even though you may not want to see any of them the first couple of days. And also to have a spare in case you mess up one. If you are comfortable in yoga pants and t-shirts then you can pack them instead or a combination. I preferred harem pants and t-shirts.
    2. Towels : 2-3 hand towels and 1 body towel
    3. Recovery kit : Medicated wet wipes, Extra long maxi pads, simple cotton pads (Plain cotton pads are a must!), 5-6 maternity under wears (Disposable or the loose fitting ones) and a robe. If you’ve had an episiotomy then ice pads or hydro gel pads are a live safer. Look for it!
    4. Nursing set : 4-5 Nursing bras, a nursing cover, nursing pads, sore gel if you get sore when feeding
    5. Toiletry kit: This kit was such a dose of confidence booster. I always made it a point (or at least wanted to!) to be well dressed when I knew visitors were coming. When every person that walks  tell you, ‘wow,  you look great or you look so fresh or you don’t look like you just delivered’ or whatever kind words they choose will be such a dose of energy booster! It cheered me up and I began to go up-beat about it and started believing it! It certainly made my recovery more cheerful. So you kit should include some basic items and some feel-good items. They are :
    • Wet wipes, Face wash, Body wash, Shampoo/Condi and Moisturizer,
    • Comb, Clips, Hand mirror, Lens / solution and Deo
    • Kohl, Concealer, Lip Gloss ( Seriously. Why don’t you want to look good if you can!)
    • Tooth brush, toothpaste and a pair of flip flops
    1. Pillow and a blanket: I took my pillow right into my labour room for my second delivery. These are some of the small things that I missed my first time. Hospital pillows may be good, but you never know if you will be comfortable in them. For my first delivery I spent a lot of time between my contractions just hating my pillow. It was too big and hard and I could just not hold onto it to squeeze…you know. You really don’t want to waste your energy that time cribbing about a pillow! For the second delivery I took mine straight into my labour room. It helped!
    2. Massage stick:  No kidding. This is very useful when you are in labour and after labour as well. It is very essential to relax and recoup your energy between those dreadful contractions. After delivery sometimes every part of your body may just kill you – so this comes handy then.
    3. Gadgets: Take your phone, iPod or your iPad. I’d also highly recommend that you load them up with lots of music, your favourite movies, sitcoms or whatever that can distract your mind when you are in labour. Especially since you never know how long you are going to be in the hospital. I took 3 hours to deliver my daughter and 2.5 days to deliver my son. Uh!  Don’t forget your to take your charger and headphones.
    4. Camera / Phone : You’ll need a fully charged camera to take lots of pictures when you are in labour or just delivered to capture the very first shots of your baby !  If some hospitals permit, you should also capture the birth of your little wonder thru pictures or video. These are precious shots to cherish and a pride to never let go off for the mamma!
    5. Documents : Your Insurance papers, photo-id, your pregnancy file, emergency contact details and a wallet with some cash. Though someone is always going to be with you,  its good to tuck these in your bag with you.
    6. Snacks : Yes, I mean snacks. You probably can buy this a couple of days before of your due date.  You won’t be allowed to eat anything once your labour kicks and you never know when you will be delivering. I delivered both my kids in the wee hours of the night and after all the pushing and exhaustion I felt very hungry after my sedation wore out.  In case the hospital kitchen is closed or you don’t feel like eating that food…some snacks might come in handy.
    7. Brother gift/ Sister gift: If you have an older one you should pack some books or toys for her/him when they come to the hospital to visit you. I’d highly recommend that you buy some new toys/books to surprise them when they come so confused to meet you and the new baby!

FOR THE BABY :

  1. Diapers. I bought two different kinds for back up.  Just in case the baby gets a rash in the first kind.
  2. Cloth Nappies 8-10 pieces at least – You may want to consider this if baby’s skin is too sensitive for diapers or if you don’t want her use rash creams from day one. It’s a good option to throw in some cloths nappies into your bag.
  3. Rubber sheet : If you are using cloth nappies
  4. Destin or a rash cream
  5. Wetwipes
  6. Nail clipper (babies have really sharp nails when they are born!)
  7. Swaddle blanket : 2 -3
  8. Onsies / Jablas : 8-10 , Mittens, Socks, Cap.
  9. Wash cloth to wipe baby clean everyday
  10. Feeding bottles for nb :  2-3 bottles for back up. In case you are not able to feed or if the baby resists a bit initially you may want to use this. You can probably buy the formula at the hospital pharmacy.
  11. Nursing pillow : I’ve heard that this is a boon. I personally  preferred sitting on a chair with arm rest and feeding my baby
  12. Car seat : This is mandatory if you are in US or EU.

Hope this list gives you a good idea of what to pack in your bag! Here’s wishing you an easy delivery and a quick recovery 🙂