Wednesday 14 March 2018

22 Essentials to Pack in Your Hospital Bag for Delivery

I started to pack in my Hospital Bag for Delivery from 8 months onwards. There was frequent buying of stuffs and filling different bags and making compartments within.

I made a comprehensive list of what all I would require for staying in the hospital for 2-3 days and packed accordingly. I was given a tiny list from the hospital as well but it was insufficient in a variety of manners.

With my experience I can say that you need to pack 3 bags - mom, dad/guardian and baby.

You may feel it is too much, but in order to excuse your husband/guardian from unnecessary shuttle from hospital to home, pack a bag for him too.

Another word of caution is that 2-3 days before your estimated delivery date, make your husband or guardian see your packing and familiarize themselves with the bags because frankly the mom will be in a "half-dead" position and no nurse/doctor will ask her for items.

Now when I look back, I feel every pregnant women must pack their "Hospital Bag" with utmost seriousness and it is fun too!

So, lets begin!

1. Official Documents

Keep your and husband's identification cards, papers, hospital room booking slips, previous bills, doctor prescriptions, medical details, etc. in a safe folder and carry it.

2. Diary/Notepad

Carry a notepad and pen for writing some instructions, routine or anything from the nurses and doctors about baby-care after discharge from hospital.

3. Pre-Natal Vitamins or Any Other Medicine

4. Baby Romper/Bodysuit/Sleepsuit

Pack atleast 10 rompers/sleepsuit/bodysuit or anything you would want to cover your baby with. Sleepsuits are a good choice especially when hordes of guests touch and pick up baby. Full length dresses protects them from the germs.

5. Bibs

Pack several bibs in order to save your dress and baby's clothes from getting dirty during breastfeeding or when baby vomits or spits. 

6. Baby Booties/Shoes/Socks, Caps, Mittens/Gloves

These are important regardless of your baby being born in summer or winter. Baby is accustomed to a high temperature of a woman's body. They have come out from a home that was 30 degrees Celsius. Our habit of living under fan, cooler and air-conditioner may adversely affect a baby. 

Secondly, newborns don't have to be dressed with very fancy looking stuffs. Buy simple and comfortable ones.

7. Diapers

There are several sizes of diapers available in market. Pick the one that is called infants or newborns or new baby.

8. Blankets

Carry 3-4 blankets or swaddle cloths. As soon as the baby is born, the nurses will wash and ask for a blanket from your house to swaddle. So keep this blanket, a set of clothes, booties and diapers on the top of your baby bag.

9. Baby's Going Home Dress

The very title gives such a cute feeling in the gut. I packed the most lovely looking dress for the day we were going to be discharged from the hospital and carrying the newborn for his/her first visit to home. 

Make sure all clothes, bibs, socks and swaddles are cotton, washed with a little antiseptic liquid, dried and then taken to the hospital. Do not make the mistake of packing brand new clothes with tags on for the newborn. Clothes in shops are touched by numerous people, stacked in shelves for days, and are given a touch of starch for tightness in the fabric. As you wash them the starch, fragrance, etc. will be released and you will yield a much softer cloth suitable for the newborn.

10. Baby Toiletries

Even if the hospital bathes your baby with their products, it would not be a bad idea to carry some items with you as well like baby soap, oil, moisturizer, cleaning wipes, etc.

11. Towel for Mom

This is of utmost importance especially if you are going in for vaginal delivery. Sudden burst of water bag can be controlled with this towel while reaching your hospital.

12. Mom's Clothes

While the hospital has its own dress, I still carried and urged to wear my own clothes. So I took dresses and undergarments for each day and a good one for going home. 

Make sure it is not fitted but loose because after delivery you won't shrink back overnight and will continue to look like pregnant. So carry comfortable and loose fit clothes. 

Same goes for the clothes for dad /guardian. Pack a day dress and a night for them as well.

13. Front-Open Bra

This kind of bra is helpful for easy access at the time of feeding.

14. Toiletries for Mom and Dad/Guardian

Pack a kit which will contain tooth brush, tooth paste, soap, shampoo, face wash, moisturizer, combs, shaving kit, etc. Pack a pair of low-heeled slippers or footwear for mom. No need to walk on the hospital floor bare feet.

15. Makeup

I felt no hesitation in carrying some light makeup with me because I scheduled a newborn photoshoot at the hospital and many friends and family were visiting us. So it is not a bad idea to look presentable.

16. Sanitary pads

As soon as your baby will be delivered, you will bleed for a minimum of 1 month. So keep 1-2 packs of sanitary pads with you. 

I doubt tampons will be a good option but ask your doctor about using tampons if you had a vaginal delivery. In most cases, doctor will say no because you just got stiches down there.

17. Breast/Nursing Pads

These are special absorbing pads round in shape to be filled inside the bra for soaking excess milk production and not letting embarrassing wet patch showing on the clothes of mom.

18. Nipple Cream

New mom is not habitual of a baby sucking her nipples. Dry and sore nipples will be an irritant. Therefore, carry nipple moisturizer. I chose to go the natural way and made my own from milk fat/ghee. I did so because nipple cream once applied will not be wiped off before feeding baby. However, there are some good and safe options in the market.

19. Sanitizer

We bought a huge bottle to be used before handling the baby. Offer to your guests as well.

20. Snacks, food or confectioneries

These will help calming your and your husband/guardian's nerves. It is going to be one terrific night or day and most probably food will be of least priority. But your husband/guardian definitely needs it.

21. Camera

Needless to say that you have to capture the most wonderful day of your life. Amidst the stress and sweat, days and years later you will forget the pain (ok! you will remember) and cherish the pictures in which your baby is mere 1 hour old, 6 hours old or less than 24 hours old.

22. Chargers

Phone and its charger are a must.

Hopefully these must-haves have been helpful enough for guiding you in your packing.

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