Mama, are you wondering what pregnancy hospital bag essentials you shouldn't be without? We spoke to Marie Louise AKA The Modern Midwife, for her expert advice about the hospital bag must-haves you'll need to help you prepare to push, push, push!
Marie had a home birth, but she still packed a hospital bag just in case! Whether you're planning to give birth at home or at hospital, it's still important to pack a hospital bag just in case. Keep scrolling to find out more about the pregnancy hospital bag essentials she included in her personal hospital bag when planning for the birth of her daughter Georgie...
1. When You Were Pregnant With Your Daughter Georgie, At What Point In Your Pregnancy Did You Start Packing Your Hospital Bag?
I planned for a home birth but still packed a hospital bag as I always advise women to do. Birth can be unpredictable and it's important to be prepared for as many eventualities as possible, which is why no matter the type of birth you plan you should still pack a hospital bag.
I started packing fairly late at 36 weeks but I had everything in her nursery, just not ready to go by the door until then. I was quite relaxed about it all and I knew babies didn't need much so I was happy to leave it until then. I had my home birth as planned and didn't need a hospital bag, but knowing it was ready when I went into labour did give me peace of mind.
2. Did You Create A Hospital Bag Checklist And Was This Helpful?
I already had one for women that take my online antenatal course, so I just referred to that if I'm honest!
3. How Many Bags Did You Take With You And Will Mamas Need To Bring One For Themselves, Their Baby And Their Partner?
Hospital bag essentials for mum can be rather overwhelming and in all honestly babies don't need a huge amount! It's more about making sure Mama is well equipped with the simple but important things like comfy maternity knickers, a nightie that unbuttons down the front for those that have chosen to breastfeed, lip balm, hair ties etc.
The vast majority of mums and babies are discharged around 24 hours after giving birth. If for whatever reason women and their babies need to stay longer people can always drop stuff off or you can order extra bits online ready for when you get home.
I only prepared one bag for me and the baby and I got my partner to pack his own. I think its important for birth partners to take responsibility for themselves as Mama has a lot to think about. That said, sometimes women prefer to pack their partner's bag because that gives them peace of mind that it's done. Every woman and her birth partner are different.
You can purchase Marie's book 'The Modern Midwife's Guide To Pregnancy, Birth & Beyond here.
4. Looking Back On Your Birthing Experience, What Were The Top 3 Items That You Were Thankful You Included In Your Hospital Bag?
I had a home birth but three of my top items were:
- Extra comfy maternity knickers: I used the disposable ones.
- A jug to pour water while I peed: It really helps take the sting out.
- Snacks and a few water bottles dotted around the house: I left snacks on my bedside tables, the car, the lounge and baby changing bag in the days leading up to birth. I knew before birth that breastfeeding would make me a different kind of hungry, the "I need food in my mouth right now" kind, so I left snacks everywhere and ate at all hours.
5. What Are The Most Useful Items To Include That Mamas May Forget To Consider?
Usually a little bit of luxury. I say to women bring your best shower gel (maybe from the Christmas gift set that is still in the box) or luxury samples. After you've given birth you deserve to moisturize with a decent body cream and wash your hair with a luxury shampoo etc.
Bring in a little treat just for you. The other thing to do is make a little box of self-care and leave it under your bed. It doesn't have to be extravagant but filling a shoe box with some treats like your favorite chocolate, some soft socks, maybe a candle or some bath salts when you're ready dip in and out of it during the postnatal period.
Self care is key! It's not all about the baby, Mama also matters and the more she honors her needs, takes an extra 5 minutes to have a soak in the bath or enjoys her favorite chocolate the better. The most important thing a baby needs is a well-looked-after Mama.
6. Was There Anything That You Didn't Use In Your Hospital Bag And Are There Any Items That Mamas Don't Need To Include?
There wasn't anything I didn't use as I was minimal with my packing, but overall you don't need to overdo it with the clothing. A few changes for your baby, a blanket and a muslin or two should do the job.
Your Hydrating Hospital Bag Essentials
If you're about to start packing your hospital bag, we've got your body care covered from top-to-toe as it's important that you keep your skin hydrated and protected post-birth. Our luxurious Hospital Bag Bundle includes everything you need for nourished and supported skin from top-to-toe after the arrival of your baby.
Gently cleanse your skin with our Megamama Shower Milk, perfect for your first post-birth shower or bath that will help soothe and hydrate your skin. Supercharged with our iconic and adored Omega Rich Skin Stretch Complex and Vitamin E, this gentle body wash will help keep your skin supple, soft and protected.
Whether you decided to breastfeed or are just experiencing sore nipples, our Keep Calm Nipple Balm is formulated to provide instant comfort and relief to dry, sensitive nipples. This 100% natural oil and butter blend soothes nipples throughout pregnancy, breastfeeding and beyond and is vegan, cruelty-free and perfectly safe for breastfeeding - so there's no need to remove before baby latches on!
Thank you so much to Marie for her useful tips on what to include in your hospital bag! To find out more about Marie you can head to her website themodernmidwife.com, or her Instagram page @themodernmidwife for expert advice on pregnancy, birth and the post-natal period. You can also sign-up to one of her online courses here.