Hospital bag checklist for labor and delivery

Hospital bag checklist labor delivery
The other day, I got in over my head and decided to run around with my son. Of course, I fell short of breath at night, got cramps on my feet, and just couldn’t wait to lie down. At that moment, it dawned upon me that I am only a month away from my due date. If she has taken after her brother, we might wait for a little longer, but this girl is sitting low already and seems much more eager to get out. So I packed my hospital bag.

Here is a practical hospital bag checklist from an experienced mama:

  • One set of clean clothes for the mother
  • One set of clean clothes for the baby
  • Toiletries: Hair brush, toothbrushes for the parents, travel-sized toothpaste, shampoo and shower gel
  • Slippers: The comfortable sort you can wear in the bath. I don’t like flip-flops indoors because I can’t wear socks with them.
  • Comfortable socks to keep feet warm.
  • Nursing bra, nursing pads and lanolin nipple cream for nursing
  • Pajamas for my husband: whoever is going to stay overnight at the hospital
  • My notebook and pen
  • Extra hairbands (I have long hair)
  • Moisturizer for lips and hands (you dry up from thirst)
  • A digital watch to time the contractions if necessary
  • Breathe Right: Last time I tried to breathe in and out through my nose while pushing and felt really uncomfortable when my nose got stuffy. This time I’m counting on the Breathe Right.
  • If you are planning to keep it, your container for cord blood

Things to pack later: {I couldn’t put in my bag right now and made a note of on the door}

  • My glasses and my contact solution: The doctor said, it may be harmful to keep my contacts in my eye while pushing.
  • Camera and camcorders
  • iPod
  • My handbag: I have my ID, wallet and cellphone in it. Except for the glasses, I usually also have my camera, notebook, pen and iPod in there already.
  • Chargers for phones, camera and camcorder
  • Car seat: We’ll install the base in a week or two.

Things I didn’t pack on purpose:

  • A bunch of clothes or pajamas for me or the baby, nightgowns etc.: It was easier for me to just use the nightgown and baby clothes given by the hospital. If you you don’t know if your hospital provides these or you want to use your own, you may need to take a few of these too.
  • Diapers: They give diapers at the hospital
  • Panties for mom: I used only hospital panties last time.
  • Food and drinks: They don’t let you eat or drink anything once you get the epidural anyway. If necessary, there is a cafeteria and vending machines at the hospital.
  • Make-up: I am the kind of person who is too lazy to put on make-up on a regular day. There’s no way I would bother with it after birth.

Other than this, we also made an emergency plan, sent it to family members and hung it up on our fridge. I put my comfortable winter clogs by the door, so I don’t have to bother with bending over and trying to put on my boots. I can just slip on my clogs. We’ll only know whom we can leave my son with at the last minute. If my daughter arrives late as well, the house is already going to be full of people anyway.

Emergency plan:

  1. The numbers of the hospital I will give birth at, the closest hospital, my OB/GYN and all family members have been saved into our cell phones.
  2. The address of the hospital I will give birth at, which moved a block north last week, has been memorized and the different routes we can take there have been checked. We’ve made an appointment for a tour of the hospital.
  3. We looked at our old birth plan papers. It’s more or less the same. We put them back in our wallets.
  4. We e-mailed all the information in #1 and #2 to all family members. I hope they’ve read them, printed them and saved all the necessary numbers.

Added: It’s a little early but when I was changing the bed sheets, I put a mattress protector and disposable bed pads under the sheets.

Knowing that my hospital bag is ready, I can freely run around more with my son now.

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