When I was preparing for childbirth, I found packing my hospital bag was a bit overwhelming. I was not sure about a lot of things like when is it best to pack it, what goes in it, etc.
Anyway now that I’ve given birth, I can now share my 5 best tips. These are just general tips but if you want to know what items I actually packed in my hospital bag and which ones ended up being useful, click here.
1) Pack your hospital bag early, while you can still move around. 36-37 weeks is ideal. This period is far enough that you are likely mobile enough (in spite of having to waddle) to do some light packing. And it’s close enough that if you end up going into labour earlier than your due date, then at least your hospital bag is ready.
2) Pack the essentials only. Moms-to-be, especially new moms, have a tendency to overpack their hospital bags. However, just know that the hospital or birth centre will have a lot of the things that you and your baby will need, in case you forgot something.
3) Make sure your birth support partner knows your birth plan and what you packed in your hospital bag. Go over the items and make sure that he/she understands what they are for and why you think you will need them.
For instance, if you packed two pieces of clothing for the baby, let your birth support partner know which one is for in-hospital stay and which one will be the going-home outfit. This will help you not feel overwhelmed about little details at the hospital and simply focus on you and your new baby.
4) Place your hospital bag near your front door or wherever it is that will be easily accessible and visible to you. Don’t leave it in your bedroom especially if it’s located at the highest floor of your house or far away from the door.
I would even recommend to place it in your car right away but things could happen such as your birth support partner might be away while you go into labour. So the best way is to just place it where you or your birth support partner won’t forget it and can easily pick it up once it’s time to go to the hospital.
5) Don’t forget baby’s carseat. I’d recommend to have it installed in your car (or whichever car you’d be using on your way back home) around 36 or 37 weeks.
Bonus: You can use any bag as your hospital bag such as a carry-on luggage. For me, I chose to use the diaper bags that were gifted to me as I found them spacious and compact, and I was able to fit everything in!
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That’s it! Happy packing and best wishes on your labour and delivery, mama! 💖
Check out My Birth Story here.