Around the 34th week of pregnancy, you should pack and prepare your hospital bag for when your precious little one finally arrives. The last thing you need when contractions hit is to be running around grabbing all the essentials before heading to the hospital – not only will you be rushed but guaranteed you are going to forget an important thing or two.
All that being said, if your doctor has indicated that your pregnancy is high risk or there is a chance of going into labor early, you may want to consider packing that bag sooner than the 34th week.
Here is a quick and easy guide to what you should be packing in your hospital bag:
You are going to want your photo ID and any hospital forms you have filled out ready for as soon as you check in. Be sure to also bring your health insurance information with you as well. If you have written a birth plan, pack that as well.
There are the obvious toiletries such as a hairbrush and hair ties, toothbrush and toothpaste, deodorant, lotion and facial soap but you may not think about needing menstrual pads for after the birth and – if you wear corrective lenses – you’re going to want your contact case and glasses.
Any loose and comfortable maternity clothes you wore during the pregnancy are perfect for postpartum dressing and completely appropriate for wearing home. If the idea of a starchy, scratchy hospital gown does not vibe with your idea of comfort, bring an old nightgown and robe – also accept the fact that these articles may get ruined during birth.
• Labor Relief
Labor is tough so you may want to bring along items to relieve the discomfort such as lip balm, sugar-free candy (sugared candy will make you thirsty) and an exercise ball if you are able to get up and out of bed.
• Comfort Items
Labor can be a long haul, so pack some items to make you as comfortable and cozy as possible such as a good book, some relaxing music or your favorite pillow.
• Infant Car Seat
Okay, so an infant car seat is not going to fit in your hospital bag but you still need to have one and, importantly, you need to know how to properly buckle your baby into it.
• Coming Home Clothes
Babies are born in all shapes and sizes so bring a couple of outfits in newborn and 0-3 sizes for that wondrous moment when baby and family finally get to come home. Make sure they are weather appropriate.
Again, babies come in varying sizes. Pack both newborn and size 1 diapers in your hospital bag.
Is there anything we missed on this list? What else would you pack in your hospital bag?