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hospital birthing gown

(49 Posts)
LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 13:50:44

I feel a little stupid posting this question, but I'm appalled at all of the 'birthing gowns' for sale and their ridiculously high prices. I would rather just wear a normal cotton hospital gown that can be changed as many times as need be and then slip into my comfy gown after I've given birth & cleaned up. Did your Midwife Led Unit provide said gowns?

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 13:51:46

(*my own comfy gown from home)

I just bought my own cheap nighties or xxl mens tshirts. Much more comfortable and they are only a few quid so I didn't mind chucking them away.

Bluestocking Thu 24-Jan-13 13:53:38

Birthing gowns? I've never heard of such a thing. I wore a T-shirt and sweatpants until I had to take the sweatpants off, then a theatre gown because I was taken through to theatre for a forceps delivery.

GuffSmuggler Thu 24-Jan-13 13:53:43

What is a birthing gown!?! Everyone I know wore whatever they liked unless going into theatre then they give you a hospital gown....

GuffSmuggler Thu 24-Jan-13 13:54:22

Xpost - sounds like another way to get money out of unsuspecting pregnant women!!!

BonaDea Thu 24-Jan-13 14:04:00

Definitely a way to weedle more money out of us. can't you just wear an old tshirt or shirt of DP's then change into a 'normal' nightie when done and dusted?

I haven't decided what to wear yet, but do want something which buttons down quite far, so that I can have some skin to skin without having to completely strip off. But don't think that has to be anythign more sophisticated than a large shirt or buttoned t-shirt (in a dark colour!).

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 14:32:07

Exactly my thoughts - a 'birthing gown' is a horrid way to extract money from first time mums. I only came across them when I was looking online for a nice nighty for breast feeding.

I assumed that for labour I could just wear my own normal maternity clothes into the hospital and then they would provide a regular, super-soft-from-being-washed-5,000-times, hospital gown to change into. I don't particularly want to wear my own clothes for the bloody mess of it and I'm sure I'll end up starkers anyway (so a hospital gown would be easiest to rip off!)

But no one that I've talked to in RL has been given a hospital gown. Which I find very odd. Isn't that what they're for?

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 14:33:29

Note - I was never intending to purchase a 'birthing gown', but it triggered some RL conversation because I thought the idea of it was so absurd. Hence, discovering that my friends weren't given hospital gowns.

Sometimes the MWs will give you scrubs to wear if you haven't got anything suitable, but you are expected to bring something yourself.

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 14:43:43

Also, the reason I decided that I wanted to wear a hospital gown is because I've been trawling all the cheap stores (M&S, Primark, H&M, Debenhams, charity shops, etc.) for an inexpensive nighty that I could wear during birth and toss afterwards. But no one seems to sell anything that buttons down far enough for post birth skin-to-skin. And of the one I did find that might've worked, it was white and inevitably floral printed.

Hospital gown is therefore the way to go. (And afterwards I can slip into my amazingly comfortable Seraphina bamboo breast-feeding lounge pjs!)

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 14:45:23

Thanks TeWi - I'm foreign and I suppose it's just handled differently in the UK. I just assumed the hospital or MLU would provide a hospital gown!

sleepyhead Thu 24-Jan-13 14:46:07

I wore a Primary nighty about 2 sizes above my normal one. It did the job and came through remarkably unscathed, so much so that I've been wearing it on and off for the last 6 years and am contemplating using it for dc2's birth in a couple of months!


sleepyhead Thu 24-Jan-13 14:46:40

Primark blush

DeDevilTail Thu 24-Jan-13 14:49:31

I was given a hospital gown. I think it was because I was having an epidural so easier access to my spine. But in sure if you ask for one it won't be a problem.

TurkeyDino Thu 24-Jan-13 14:50:09

I got a hospital gown. Twice wink

They just gave me one near the end of labour. Not sure why. I have all of my lovely post birth photos wearing an attractive gown stamped with 'nhs property'.

Now that I think about it I have no recollection of putting the gown on either time.

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 14:51:38

I thought Primark would be my friend in that way, sleepy, but none of the options they're currently serving up would be in any way suitable for skin-to-skin. In fact, most of what they're selling at the moment are (tiny, even the largest size) vests and pj bottoms.

I did find a pack of gigantic black knickers for super cheap, though!

(Can you all tell that I'm on cervix watch and bored out of my mind waiting for this baby to arrive???!)

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 14:56:15

grin @ NHS property

Thanks for your responses, everyone. (And for keeping me company!) When we arrive at the hospital, I'll ask for a gown. If they cannot provide one then I'll just do it nekkid. wink

HappyJoyful Thu 24-Jan-13 14:58:52

The whole concept of them annoyed hell out of me too, and the cost.
I agree wholeheartedly with an oversized Primark (preferably black / dark blue) nightie, I got one that buttoned (given size of it) practically down to my waist so fine for skin to skin. Though now am thinking in my mind I was still in hospital gown for most of the time.
Yep and avoid paper knickers, luckily had had that tip many a time from friends, again, large (black) granny pants are your best friend.
Ahh just seen your post, primark not got any at moment - umm, tesco's / asda ? somewhere must have a big nightie

megandraper Thu 24-Jan-13 15:01:52

You'll be lucky to get a hospital gown!

With DC3 I rushed into hospital without a labour bag (she came early and I hadn't packed one yet) - I just managed to grab a few items before rushing out of the door.

Post-labour, I discovered I'd only brought pyjama bottoms and no top. The clothes I'd come in were irretrievably bloody/sweaty. They didn't let me have ANYTHING to wear! I had to pretty much beg them to even let me have borrow a suit for my baby.

I had to wear a sweaty, gaping one-button cardie to preserve some sort of decency until visiting hours the next day (in the AFTERNOON) when DH could bring me something to wear.

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 15:07:57

Yikes bedhopper - that's terrible!

Tesco's doesn't have anything at the moment, Happy but I haven't tried ASDA, yet - good suggestion!

If I can be bothered to make the journey I might also try TK Maxx again, since their stock shifts on a regular basis.

In reserve, what about a man's button-up shirt?

With DD I wore scrubs because I forgot to take anything, and with DS I wore a shirt. They were both equally comfy!

binkybonk Thu 24-Jan-13 15:16:04

I wore a plain black slightly saucy nightie that I'd had for some time. It's ready for its second airing anytime soon. In the first pics you can see it as a black bit of fabric across my stomach as all other flesh is exposed...smile
When it came to skin-to-skin/ first breastfeed, I obviously felt everyone in the room had seen it all before and just pulled the whole thing down, no tasteful unbuttoning for me wink

CountryCupcakes Thu 24-Jan-13 15:35:22

I just assumed that I'd be given a hospital gown the same as for DD's 1&2. 40weeks pg so theres no way I'm venturing to the shops now. One of DH's old T's will have to do. Off to re-pack my hospital bag...

toffeelolly Thu 24-Jan-13 15:38:42

just one of my own nightdresses . a cheap one so you can bin it. never would like a hospital gownwink good luckwink

SeeYouSoon Thu 24-Jan-13 16:15:49

I just stripped off grin

SneezySnatcher Thu 24-Jan-13 17:01:34

I took my own. Was offered a gown but, even in the throes of labour, I didn't want my arse hanging out (wasn't bothered about fanjo)!

Mine was from mothercare. 2-pack. Button down the front for BF/skin-to-skin.

I'm wearing the same one for this DC too blush.

ChiefOwl Thu 24-Jan-13 17:09:06

Mothercare used to sell nighties that button right down the front think they were bf ones... I think they only give you gowns when you need to go to theatre

KFFOREVER Thu 24-Jan-13 17:11:28

Went shopping today for nightie post birth and what a nightmare. Found it very hard to find a buttoned front nightie. Found a couple in m&s but not so happy with the style. For birth im going for an old nightie at home.

I bought a couple from Primark in Nov to give birth in. Maroon cotton with a lace trim. V unattractive grin

craftycottontail Thu 24-Jan-13 18:49:56

Have you seen this in M&S? £12.50


I was thinking of getting it for labour as buttons down all the way (assuming they aren't fake buttons!) and is cheap enough to chuck if it gets manky.

KFFOREVER Thu 24-Jan-13 19:12:56

Crafty i think thats the one i bought today. Not very nice looking but it has buttons so should do the trick.

Mutley77 Thu 24-Jan-13 19:34:21

I'd ring the mat unit to check if you're expecting them to provide a gown as I'm sure they won't - they didn't provide me with sanitary towels when I went in as an emergency with bleeding in late pregnancy - something I considered an absolute essential.

I can't see that a gown would be any more helpful to bf in than a t-shirt/nightie as they button at the back....

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 20:19:46

Not if you wear them backwards, Mutley! In my home country the hospital gowns are designed to be worn either way, so I'm just going on past experience that apparently doesn't hold tight in the UK. How shocking that they wouldn't provide a sanitary towel for you - doesn't seem right. Must've been a horrible experience.

I've been inspired by Binky (thank you!) and have added to my labour bag one of my favourite black nighties. It's bamboo, so super soft and it's incredibly flattering comfortable. It's not got a button down front, but it's cut low enough that I can just pull off the straps and push the top down for instant skin-on-skin. <no modesty>

I'll probably end up nekkid anyway grin

dinkystinky Thu 24-Jan-13 20:20:53

Cheap big tshirt did the trick for DS1's birth - for DS2 I was naked (birthing pool birth and couldnt stand the feel of fabric on my skin)

IWantToGoToThere Thu 24-Jan-13 20:22:39

I bought a dark blue 2-pack from Mothercare with DS1 and they buttoned down the front for skin to skin and breastfeeding. To my surprise, they washed up really well and I ended up using them to sleep in post-birth for breastfeeding at night etc and I've been wearing them all through this pregnancy and will use them for delivery of DS2 in a few weeks.

So, don't automatically disregard the more expensive ones - especially if you plan on having more kids

Mrsaurtherpendragon Thu 24-Jan-13 20:22:43

Hospital gown for both DD, I refused to buy something to chuck afterwards! grin

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 20:32:47

Oh, I didn't consider the Mother are ones the expensive ones - they were actually only £26 for a 2 pack, but I hated them when I tried them on. (Probably because I'm a pj person and I already have several pairs of breastfeeding pjs for after birth - but they aren't particularly practical during birth!)

LazyMachine Thu 24-Jan-13 20:33:17

*Mothercare <curses autocorrect>

Athrawes Thu 24-Jan-13 20:52:55

I took off all my clothes and walked around butt naked until i had the epidural then lay on the bed equally naked. The midwives and staff are going to be looking up at your most intimate parts getting stretched and squished and watching you poo and curse, a wee bit of booby and tummy flesh is hardly going to shock them!

milkyjo Fri 25-Jan-13 10:11:06

Matalan do button down nighties. I bought 2 for my first pregnancy 2 sizes larger (not maternity). I thought I'd be chucking the one I gave birth in but ended up taking it home and it washed really well. Nice soft cotton and I'm wearing them still! Great for breastfeeding. Here are some they have at the moment although it looks like they've only got the ones that button halfway - still plenty of room for baby: www.matalan.co.uk/fcp/categorylist/dept/womens_womens-nightwear?resetFilters=true#filters=TERTIARY_FILTER!nighties&productsPerPage=40

milkyjo Fri 25-Jan-13 10:11:44

Filter the page to nighties if its easier.

bumpitybumpbump Fri 25-Jan-13 12:38:48

I have just bought a two pack of nighties from Mothercare online - they are predictably pink and floral but provide easy boob access for feeding and a bit of space for skin on skin (although not much). I figured I'd wear one for birthing and then change into the other one afterwards (and probably bin the first one). I was going to take my normal dressing gown to hospital to wear afterwards but definitely won't be letting it near any of the gorey action!

I have heard that you get quote hot and sweaty (sorry clueless first timer) so I thought something cotton for the action woudl be a good idea.

I am planning on having an epidural so that's a very good point about needing access at the back - maybe I'll bring a shorter t-shirt too just in case!

rrreow Fri 25-Jan-13 14:09:51

I wore one of DHs old tshirts. We took it home and washed it, and there were still some blood stains, but I wasn't allowed to either throw it away or wash it again on DHs command he's so sentimental grin .

But then DSiL was house sitting for us a while back and went on a bit of a cleaning/laundry spree and she put it in the laundry! shock That second wash actually got rid of all the staining and it has now been relegated to a sleep tshirt. It's actually got holes in it now but now I've got attached to it and don't want to get rid of it...

Do Marks and Spencers still have their 'granny nightie' section? They have some lovely nightwear but I'm sure the button-down-the-front nighties are still hiding somewhere. They might work?

QueenofClean Sat 26-Jan-13 09:00:51

I wore a black vest top & pj bottoms for labouring in. I was induced after waters breaking and not going into labour on my own.

Vest top came off just as I started pushing to get skin to skin contact.

For after delivery I got some lovely button up nighties in Primark - perfect for skin to skin & breast feeding.

Watching the video back of DD2 birth I look bloody awful so aiming for DC3 to look a lot a bit more presentable!

ratbagcatbag Sat 26-Jan-13 09:09:56

Ooh thanks for matalan link, there's one near me so will be going soon to have a nosy. loved the butterfly baby doll, although not practical at all

Twattybollocks Sat 26-Jan-13 11:56:47

Just buy a cheap Primark nightie to labour/give birth in, as long as its comfy and clean its fine. You will probably want to throw it away afterwards anyway, although I've washed mine and kept it for the next baby, tightwad that I am.
I did have a hospital gown given both times as I had an epidural and it was the most bloody uncomfortable restrictive item of clothing I've ever worn!

Stixswhichtwizzle Sat 26-Jan-13 21:02:12

I laboured in a bikini top. Post birth I put on BLACK (very important!) nursing pj's

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