Things are getting exciting if you are starting to think about what to have ready for the birth of your baby. This is the first time you need to pack for both you and your baby and there are lots of different items you might like to take.
We have put together this comprehensive list for you so you don’t forget anything.
Packing your pregnancy bag is a job best done by around 36 weeks unless you have reason to think you are going to go early. The lists below are suggestions – you might not want to take everything.
It may work best to pack different bags – one for when you are in labour and the hours after and then another for your hospital stay. If you are going to be transferring to a maternity unit that one could stay in the car (with the preinstalled baby capsule!).
First up we asked some Kidspot mum’s for their hot tips and Suze reckons “It’s important you find out whether the hospital you’re going to will provide nappies/wipes/singlets/blankets etc for the baby. Some provide everything, others a few of these things and others provide nothing at all.” Good to know!
Another Mum advised to ‘put some oil on your baby’s bottom before you put on that first nappy. It is wonderful when it comes to the baby’s first poo. My goodness, when I think of trying to clean that sticky poo off my first baby’s bottom!! Second baby, with the oil on, it just wiped straight off. You will need to keep putting it on for a day or two until the meconium has all gone. Best oil are carrier oils (not scented) – olive oil, apricot oil, etc.”
Finally have a text or message group all set up so you can easily keep everyone up to date with your progress.
Now for packing the hospital bags.
What you will need
- Maternity bra/s
- Nighties or PJ’s that can unbutton for breastfeeding (or lift up easily)
- A light robe – it’s pretty warm in hospital so your big fleecy robe will likely be too hot.
- Casual day clothes for in the hospital but also to wear home. Your maternity clothes are probably best as you will likely still have a jelly belly. If you have a caesarean you will definitely need a comfy waistband.
- Slippers or comfy shoes
- Jandals for the shower
- Breast pads
- Maternity pads (your hospital may supply these but pack some just in case)
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Hairbrush and spare hair elastics
- Shampoo and conditioner
- Lip balm
- Massage lotion
- Wheat pack (hospitals prefer these to hotties)
- Socks – although the hospital might be warm it’s best to insure against cold feet
- Undies – make sure they have decent crotch to stick the sanitary pads to. You might like to get knickers that come up high to support your jelly belly and also sit above any potential caesarean scar
- Any medications you have been taking – show your admitting doctor
- Storage containers for glasses, contact lenses, hearing aids, or dentures
- Ear plugs
- Coins for parking unless you use a parking app or credit card
- Mobile phone and charger
- Something to wear in the birthing pool if that is your preference
- Your birth plan if you have one
- Any paperwork you have been asked to complete
What baby will need
- An outfit to go home in and a blanket to tuck them into the car seat with
- Approved car seat. Hot tip – practice installing this a few times before you leave for hospital.
- Newborn nappies
- Muslin wraps and muslin wipes
- 2-3 onesies / bodysuits, singlets, socks, booties, hat and a warm top. Choose natural fibres where ever possible.
- Olive, apricot, almond oil for coating baby’s bottom before the first nappy goes to make cleaning easy
For a nappy that’s big on quality and low on price, Countdown’s Little One’s nappies make a great choice. They have a stretchy waistband which is soft and gentle, as well as elasticised leg cuffs to ensure there is less leakage, and a super-absorbent core and soft breathable inner lining to help baby stay comfy and dry.
Little One’s nappies also feature a fit indicator on the front of the nappy that lets you know when it’s time to upsize and a handy wetness indicator. Little One’s are available in a wide range of sizes. Look out for the cute dots on the packs next time you’re in your local Countdown or online at countdown.co.nz/littleones.
What your support person will need
- Swimming togs – for assisting you in the water/shower.
- Change of clothes – they may be there for a long time.
- Copy of your birth plan
- Mobile phone and charger
- List of phone numbers to send a text
- Change for vending machine, phones and parking
- Camera, charger and spare film if that’s their thing
- Books, newspapers etc for reading during a long labour
- Healthy snacks for both of you
- Cash/credit card