Most people will go to a hospital to give birth. If this is you and it is your first baby, you are likely to stay in for at least twenty-four hours after giving birth. This is of course if you have had a normal, uncomplicated delivery. If, on the other hand, you have had a cesarean section, you are likely to stay in the hospital for up to four days (or longer if there are any complications). While you are there, you are going to need some basic items to care of both you and your new baby. You will need a hospital bag, which should be packed and ready to go around three weeks before you are due to give birth. After all, you never can tell when baby is going to make an appearance.
What to Pack?
There are certain items that are considered essential when it comes to packing a hospital bag for giving birth, but there are other items that you do not need to bring yourself. Then there are some that can make the experience of giving birth a bit more enjoyable (if this is indeed possible).
The birthing center or hospital will provide you with a gown, but you can bring your own loose nightdress if you prefer. You are also likely to be provided with disposable underwear, basic toiletries, and thick sanitary pads for after the birth. You will also have access to birthing balls and massagers, if required. The center will also provide diapers, wipes, and blankets for your baby as well as formula if you are not breastfeeding.
What you absolutely need to pack is your ID and your insurance card as well as your birth plan, if you have one. Any other necessary documentation should also be packed, and make sure you have a charger for your phone as you will definitely want to share the good news once your baby is born.
Your hospital bag can contain assorted items that will help to make you relaxed while you are in labor. Think things such as a soothing playlist, a book or magazine, a comfortable pillow, massage oils, and your favorite toiletries. Remember to pack a few changes of clothes as well as nursing bras and pajamas or a nightdress that opens at the front, which will make it easier for breastfeeding. Pack some healthy snacks for yourself and your birthing partner.
You will also need some items for baby, such as a coming-home outfit. Consider bringing some mittens or a set of baby nail clippers to trim those sharp nails. When a baby is born, they will usually have sharp fingernails that can scratch the face, causing disturbed sleep. You can trim the nails yourself, or how about bringing a lightweight swaddle made by CozeeCoo (https://www.cozeecoo.com/), the experts when it comes to the safe sleep swaddle.
While the hospital or birth center will likely provide blankets for you to swaddle your baby, a dedicated swaddle sack is much easier to use and less restrictive for baby.
Remember to bring a car seat for the trip home.
What You Should Not Pack
You should never pack any valuables in your labor bag. You do not need to bring cash with you, nor do you need your jewelry. It is best to leave your precious gems at home to avoid the heartache if they were to get lost.
Do not pack candles because you are unlikely to be able to use them. You will be able to use essential massage oils, and some centers may allow a diffuser.