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32 weeks, thinking about hospital bag (but planning homebirth) what shall i pack?

(7 Posts)
nannyl Wed 13-Jul-11 08:38:43

Sorry if this has been done before, but i know its time for me to start thinking about what to pack.
Im planning a home birth, but its my 1st so obviously a fair chance I might end up in hospital anyway..... and IF i do end up in hospital it will be because of a problem so will probably be there for a day or 2 at least i guess?

Also the hospital is a good 45mins drive away, so popping back for stuff is not ideal... and we have 2 family weddings the other side of the country 5 days after my due date, so a fair chance no family at all around to bring in forgotten or extra bits either.

So what shall i pack? I plan to pack as if i am going to hospital, and hope not to need it!
Should i still pack a labour bag? though i guess it will be useful to have everything together for labour anyway even if i use it at home!

Are any maternity pads better (or worse) than any others?

owlbooty Wed 13-Jul-11 09:30:41

Hello smile I'm exactly the same as you only 4 weeks further along. I've had a bag in my car for a while now. You might not be in more than a few hours, it depends on your reason for transfer. If it's just for stitching or because of a suspected problem that turned out to be nothing, you might not even be in overnight. On the other hand as you say you could be in for a few days. I've packed for a 3 night stay as that's typical if it turns into a section.

I've put into it all the stuff that is recommended on the lists that you find online like this one.

The only things that aren't in it at the moment are my flipflops, a bath towel and the baby's car seat (which I will get DH to fit in the car when early labour starts as if I need to transfer to the hospital as an emergency he apparently will need to follow in the car with the baby)

When you have your home birth booking visit (mine was at the 36 wk appt) they may give you a list of things you need to prepare as well. B&Q do very sturdy waterproof sheets! Good luck!

mamadivazback Wed 13-Jul-11 10:00:45

Hi and congrats to you both smile, I had a hospital birth planned from the start so I read all the lists and there were LOADS! most of the stuff I found useless but this is all the stuff I used in the end. I know it seems a lot but realy it was'nt and I ended up having an emergency section so was in for 4 full days.

Labour bag-
Flexible straws
Small spray bottle
Birth notes
Change for phone

Hospital bag-
2 packs of always night towels
Pack of breast pads
2/3 pairs of PJ's
2/3 pairs of socks
2/3 pairs of big cheap pants
2 in 1 shampoo
Shower gel
Tinted moisturiser
1 change of comfy clothing
Flip flops

1 pack newborn nappies
3 vests
3 babygro's
Reusable fleece wipes/cotton wool
3 Muslins
Scratch mitts
Car seat

AnaisB Wed 13-Jul-11 11:19:54

Aside from the above, prepare a list of the things you haven't been able to pack cos you still need (toothbrush, camera etc) and depending on your DH or whoever will be there for the homebirth include where to find them. Write it big and pin it to your bag!

msbuggywinkle Wed 13-Jul-11 12:18:01

I pack a box for my home births, then if necessary it can all just be chucked in a bag. I found it felt better to have my home birth box packed rather than a hospital bag when I wasn't planning on going there.

I also found it great, whether at home or hospital to have a bullet point list of your basic wants for birth. Things like, skin to skin being very important to me, I'd rather tear than be cut, don't offer me drugs, my allergies, whatever you think is most important.

Secondtimelucky Wed 13-Jul-11 13:37:57

I'd suggest packing two separate bags. There are two types of transfer in relation to bags - you might transfer for more pain relief/some difficult stitching/difficulty pushing. In that case you could be in for one night, or even out later the same day. Or you might have a section or whatever where you are in for longer. I'd pack a small bag that you'd need for a short stay, and a larger one that can be stashed out of the way if you don't need it.

My hospital bag had:

-clothes, nappies and cotton wool for baby (check what feeding stuff you need if you don't plan to breastfeed);
-breast pads, maternity pads;
-toilet bag;
-flip flops;
-clothes for me;
-some cereal bars,etc.

It also had a big post it stuck to it saying what needed to be added at the last minute (camera, phone, notes, water).

This was my 'one night' bag. We're close to the hospital and had an older daughter at home, so I knew if I was in longer DH would be to-ing and fro-ing.

Maternity pads- yes, for the first few days I recommend the huge fat ones. Boots do some. They, er, cushion any stitches you may have to make sitting down easier! Don't go for slim ones, however absorbent you might think they are.

HighFibreDiet Thu 14-Jul-11 04:30:37

Good advice above. I planned home births for all the boys but went into hospital with ds1.

I would add breastfeeding bras to the list, as I hadn't bought any for ds1 (admitted to hospital at 37+2) and ended up having to send dp out to get them. He did brilliantly but bought me black bras which didn't necessarily go with the clothes I had packed to wear back home! Also if you do end up in hosp for a few days then lots of snacks are great because otherwise you are limited by the hospital food and the times they serve it.

Just remember that you can always discharge yourself - you don't have to assume that the midwives and doctors have your best interests at heart, most of the time they are just following hospital protocol or even just doing what is easiest! I'm saying this based on my experience, and wishing that I had challenged them when they said 'you do realise this means you can't have a home birth, don't you?'

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