What You Need In Your Birth Bag?
The time is finally here and your baby is coming! Do you have everything you need as you walk out the door? Read below for an extensive list of what you’ll want to pack for yourself, for your partner or coach, and for your baby.
What to Pack for Labor
First, you’ll want to have everything packed by the 36-week mark, just in case you go into labor before your due date. You may want two small bags: one for before delivery and one for after.
For your birth center birth, experienced moms recommend packing:
● Your wallet and/or purse with a picture ID, insurance card, and your hospital paperwork if you are preregistered
● Eyeglasses, a contact case, and solution if you plan to wear contacts
● A bathrobe, nightgown, nursing tank, nursing bra, slippers, underwear you don’t mind getting messy, socks, and a weather-appropriate change of clothes to go home in
● Something that will help you relax – your own pillow, a book, a stuffed animal, a picture of a loved one, or anything that will make your experience more comfortable
● Prepare for getting wet – if you desire to use water as a coping technique in birth, whether shower or bath, you may want to pack items you don’t mind getting wet, such as a swimsuit, underwear, sports bra, tank top, short wrap skirt, or shorts. Some labors last longer than others, so you may want a few items that allow you to get in and out of the water without getting cold
● Massage oil/lotion
● Essential oils and a diffuser, if you so desire
● A device to listen to your favorite music to during labor and headphones to cancel out the other noises
● A birth ball
● Chapstick, a toothbrush, deodorant, hair tie/rubber bands, a hair brush, and perhaps make-up
● Food: light snacks during labor, and a hearty meal for after birth
● A reusable cup with a straw to stay hydrated
● Undergarments such as Silhouettes or Depends, or heavy pads of your choice for use after birth
● Your cell phone and charger – to deliver the good news to all your friends and relatives!
● A journal and something to write with – to jot down memorable moments during labor, and after, including everything from funny things people said, to the weight and length of your newborn
*It is a good idea to have some over of these to help ease your discomforts postpartum - Ducolace, Ibuprofen, Afterease tincture and Arnica Homeopathic.
*Please carry 4 towels/blankets just in case for car births. It happens, plan ahead.
What to Pack for Your Partner/Coach
While you may be doing all the hard work, your partner needs to be ready too! Here are some recommended items that will allow your partner to do everything he/she can to be there for you:
● A charged camera with extra batteries
● Toiletries – since they’ll likely be staying overnight with you
● Comfortable shoes and a few changes of clothing
● A cellphone with a charger
● Snacks, meals, favorite beverages (coffee!)
● Money or a credit card – in case you need to run out for last minute items
● A bathing suit – if they plan to support you in the water
What to Pack for Your Baby
The day has finally come and you get to take home your beautiful newborn! Make sure you get him/her there safely and comfortably by making sure to have the following items:
● A car seat installed– you can’t take him/her home without one! You can visit your local fire station to check for correct installation if you are unsure
● A going-home outfit (make sure it has legs so your baby can fit safely in the car seat) – bring a newborn size and a 0-3-month option just in case it doesn’t fit!
● A receiving/swaddling blanket
● A hat
It may seem like a lot, but you’ll want all of the essentials for a smooth birthing experience. Make sure you see what the Frederick Birth Center offers their patients. You may be able to check a few of these items off your list already!