Packing a hospital bag for your labour can be a bit stressful. What on earth do you take?? It can be hard when you’ve never packed a hospital bag for labour before, because it’s actually quite a personal thing and what is essential for one person will be different for someone else. This time I have to pack a hospital bag for an elective caesarean, which actually I’ve found a lot easier than last time!
Even though I’ve done it before, packing my bag this time has taken a lot of thought, but I think that’s because I packed completely wrong last time when I ended up in hospital for 5 days, and had an emergency caesarean. Some items were completely useless (bikini for water birth, high neck nightie that I couldn’t breastfeed in and pyjamas that I couldn’t wear due to catheter). Some items were amazing (hot water bottle for contractions in my back and lip balm as my lips went dry with the gas and air) but won’t be needed this time round.
At least having been through the experience before, I have a much better idea of what I am going to need. I am also going to have a spare bag in the car in case I need to stay in longer than anticipated so Craig can just grab it quickly and not have to scrabble round my wardrobe trying to find stuff!
Here’s what is in my hospital bag for an elective caesearean:
Essentials for Mum
- Big knickers
- Nursing bra
- Sleep bra
- Nursing nightie
- Maternity pyjamas
- Nipple cream
- Reusable breast pads
- Leggings x2
- Vests x4
- Going home outfit (a comfy dress that I can breastfeed in with leggings to go over my scar)
- Flip flops
- Socks x2
- Dressing gown
- Maternity pads
- Disposable breast pads
- Toiletry Bag containing: hairbrush, hairbands, cotton buds, toothbrush, toothpaste, mirror, make up, make up remover/moisturiser, cotton pads, deodorant, face wipes, femfresh wipes, shower cap, flannel
- You’ll be given some special soap to buy that you need to use before and after the operation to help prevent infection.
- Phone charger
- Ipod and headphones
- List of phone numbers (in case phone doesn’t work)
- Alfie present from baby brother
- Bag for dirty clothes
- Maternity notes
- Close Caboo sling
I’ve then packed a separate bag for the baby. I’ve just used my usual changing bag for this (bought for me by my amazing friends as a baby shower gift – I love it!)
Essentials for Baby
- First outfit to take to theatre (Baby Jones vest, baby joggers, nappy, hat, cord tie)
- Sleep suits x4
- Vests x4
- Newborn hat
- Going home outfit
- Cardigan x2
- Newborn nappies x1 pack
- Water wipes x2 packs
- Cord tie
- Muslin x3
- Blanket x2 (1 cellular, 1 fluffy)
One tip I learnt from my mum friends is to pack the baby stuff in ziplock bags. This means it’s easier for Craig or the midwives to find complete outfits/changes of clothes if they need to so you’re not moving everything round trying to get those tiny baby socks at the bottom on the bag!
I have tried not to go overboard with baby bits this time round – but I will have another bag in the car with more just in case we need to stay in for longer. As with any birth, you never know what is going to happen, so I think it’s best to plan for a couple of nights stay, but due to lack of space on the ward, I don’t want to take everything up with me.
So there you have it – my essentials to take in a hospital bag for an elective caesarean. I’d also recommend a pillow or cushion for the car journey home to help protect your scar against bumps on the journey home.
Below is a handy image you can download to your phone with the list so you can save it somewhere handy to refer to whenever you need it, or send on to other people you think might need some inspiration!
What did you pack in your hospital bag? Were there any must haves, or things you packed that you didn’t need at all?
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