Hospital Bag Checklist

Between 33 and 36 weeks it's time to pack up a bag ready for dad to whip in the car as and when baby decides it's time to make that grand entrance.

Before you start packing, it's worth giving the hospital a call to find out what they do and don't supply. Some wards are able to provide you with things like nappies, formula & maternity pads where others simply don't have the budget. You may get a few to start you off, but you could be expected to bring your own stash.

It can be quite daunting thinking about packing your hospital bag; you don't know if you will be in for an hour or 10 days, what size your baby will be, if it's your 'bits' or your tum that will be sore...?!

To lighten the load we have put together a checklist of hospital bag essentials. Take a peek & feel free to add your own suggestions in the comments.

Your Labour Kit

  1. Maternity Notes ready for your midwife.
  2. Lose Fitting Old Clothes - Clothes you are happy to chuck away if you need to...it can all get a bit messy! Make sure they are 'easy access' too.
  3. Socks - Many women complain about cold feet during labour so pack a toasty snugly pair.
  4. Lip Balm- Again many women find labour & the warm heat of a maternity ward can crack & dry out their lips so come prepared.
  5. Snacks & Drinks - Giving birth is tiring stuff, you can eat during the early stages of labour so take some decent snacks, glucose tablets & isotonic drinks to keep your energy levels up.
  6. Hairbands and Clips -To keep your hair in check and out of your way.
  7. Entertainment - Labour can take hours and it builds gradually, so keeping your mind occupied (be it with a book, apps on your phone or an iPad movie) helps to pass the time.
  8. Water Spray - For a refreshing mid labour spritz.
  9. Hot water bottle or tens machine if you have chosen to use one in your birth plan.
  10. Money (specifically change) for the vending and coffee machine.

Your After Birth Kit

  1. 1 pack of Breast Feeding Pads -Even if you chose to bottle feed, you may still leak a little until your milk dries up.
  2. 10 pairs of big soft cotton granny pants.
  3. 2 packs of Maternity Sanitary Pads.
  4. Lanisinoh Cream - If you do chose to breast feed, this cream will be your best friend!
  5. 2 Nursing Bras - Whether your feeding or not, your boobs will swell when your milk comes in so pack a couple of larger, supportive but wire free bras.
  6. Ear Plugs & an Eye Mask - A busy ward can be a noisy place making sleep even more challenging than just dealing with a wakeful newborn.
  7. Phone & Charger - Ready for the big text announcement!
  8. Wash bag - The usual shampoo, body wash, toothbrush, hair brush but take travel sizes.
  9. A Clean Towel - That first bath/shower after giving birth... it's heaven, treat yourself to a fluffy towel to wrap up in after.
  10. Lose Fitting PJs or Night Dress, a Dark Coloured Lightweight Robe & Slippers.

Your Baby Kit

  1. A Baby Blanket
  2. 5 Baby Vests Size - 0-3 months
  3. 5 Baby Sleepsuits - Size 0 -3 months
  4. 1 pack of Newborn Nappies
  5. A plastic bag - To put dirty clothes in.
  6. A Super cool Baby Hat - They keep baby warm & make for a darn cute first picture!
  7. A pair of Scratch Mittens.
  8. 4 Muslin Squares.
  9. A Camera - Make sure it's well charged.
  10. A pack of Cotton Wool Balls - baby wipes are not recommended for newborns as their skin is so sensitive.

If you can choose organic baby clothes for your new baby that is great! (read here to find out how organic cotton benefits babies) If not, make sure you wash all of babies clothes before you pack them using a non biological detergent.

Your 'Going Home Hooray!' Kit

  1. Baby Car Seat - If you can afford an isofix base it really takes the faff out of getting in & out of the car!
  2. Comfy Clothes - No tight jeans or high heels, you are likely to still be in maternity clothes, it takes a good while for that bump to go down!
  3. Baby's First Outfit - Something totally adorable :)

For those experienced mummy's out there...what 'non essentials' should our new mums-to-be pack? Have we missed anything off?

Let us know your thoughts below!