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This post is part of the How To Prepare For A Second Baby blog series. During the last post, we talked about What Items You Shouldn’t Reuse With Your Second Baby. Today, I want to cover your hospital bag checklist and provide you with a downloadable PDF file of my Ultimate Hospital Bag Checklist. So if that sounds like one for you, stick around to the end.
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Once you reach your 3rd trimester it’s a good time to start preparing for the big event. And it’s likely those nesting hormones will have you doing just that.
One of the main things to think about is what to pack in your hospital bag. If you’re packing your hospital bag for the first time, then this list will hopefully be a huge help. If it’s your second or third time, it’s nice to refresh your memory on the essential items you’ll really wish you hadn’t forgotten.
Hospital Bag checklist
Before we jump in, there are a few aspects of packing for the hospital we should think about. Items for you, items for hubby/birthing partner, and finally items for your new baby. It’s easier to organise the items you need by breaking them down into separate bags.
Get your FREE Ultimate Hospital Bag Checklist in PDF form at the end of this post.
So let’s get started with the hospital bag checklist.
Your Main Bag
- Change of clothes x2
- Pajamas or nightwear x2
- Dressing Gown x1
- Big knickers (at least 5)
- Maternity/nursing bra x2
- Pack of Maternity pads
- Nursing/breast pads
- Nipple cream
- Socks (normal and warm ones)
- Slippers and/or flip flops
- Toiletries – Toothbrush, toothpaste, shower gel and washcloth, shampoo, hairbrush, makeup.
- Gadgets and charges
Labour & Birth bag
- Loose nightwear (preferably a nighty)
- Clothing for the birthing pool (if you’re planning a water birth – for me it will be a simple vest top)
- Super absorbent maternity pads
- Big knickers x2 (for after birth)
- TENS machine (if you’re using one)
- Any other items you may want – battery-operated fan, heat pack, flannel.
- Baby Grows x4
- Vests x4
- Baby Hat & Mitts x2
- Nappies (around 10)
- Muslin Cloths or bibs x4
- Cotton wool or wipes
- Baby Blanket
- Coming home outfit (if you have a special one planned)
If you’re not planning to breastfeed you will also need…
- Formula milk – I recommend buying the starter packs that come premade and include sterilised bottle teats.
Although I plan to breastfeed, in case it doesn’t go to plan I will be taking a few of these pre-made formula bottles –Aptamil 1 First Baby Milk Formula Starter Pack Ready to Use Liquid, from Birth, 6×70 ml
- Gadgets & Chargers
- Sweatshirt or jumper
- Money – especially needed for parking
- Snacks & Drinks
Snacks (source of energy)
- Energy bars
- Non-carbonated sports drinks or coconut water (to replenish some of those electrolytes)
- Bananas and other easily digestible food
- boiled sweets or gummy sweets (like jelly babies – to keep your sugar levels up)
- Sandwiches (for you and your partner)
- Bottled water (for you and your partner)
The above list is to last 24hours after birth, but it’s also worth keeping another bag packed and left at home with extra supplies in case you need a longer stay in hospital. This way, your partner can collect it for you, without you having to explain where everything is.
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- Try to get everything packed and ready by 37 weeks of pregnancy. At this point, if you go into labour a week or so early, you won’t have to rush around in a panic while also dealing with the first stages of labour.
- Keep baby’s clothing sets in clear plastic bags (zip locks or freezer bags). For example, put the first outfit after birth with a nappy in one, outfit for the following morning in another, etc.
- You can do the same with your clothing. Especially for your clothing to be worn after birth. This makes life a little easier for your birthing partner to find the items without rummaging through the bags and messing it all up.
- Pack your items for the following day at the bottom of your bags. You want to make sure all the bits you’ll need straight after birth are easily accessible at the top of your bag.
- Leave any water bottles in the freezer until you’re leaving for the hospital. They can be packed before you go and will stay nice and cold for a lot longer as they gradually melt.
- Make a separate list of things you need to grab last-minute – those water bottles, charges, etc.
There is one bit of advice I’d like to share, especially for first-time mums. When it comes to packing for the hospital, try not to overthink it. Although it’s easier said than done when it’s your first baby, but now I’m on my second I refuse to get stressed out worrying if I have everything I need packed.
If you forget something, it really doesn’t matter. What matters is that you focus on labour and birth, anything else can wait until the big event is over. The hospital is usually able to provide most things, especially if there is anything you’ve not packed for the baby.
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I hope you enjoyed reading my Ultimate Hospital Bag Checklist. Keep your eyes peeled for the final post in the series, Newborn Essentials Checklist.
Do you have any essential items going in your hospital bag that I haven’t listed above? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear what it is.