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Hospital bag - help!

(30 Posts)
FredFlintstonesSister Tue 28-Jan-14 16:18:37

I'm 26+3 and trying to pack a hospital bag. My plan was to take my new changing bag for labour and just after, and leave a backpack at home with some other stuff incase I'm in for a while. We only live 10 mins from the hospital so it's not a big deal for DH to go home for stuff as long as its already packed! Just checked the nhs website for suggestions on what to take and it's just so much stuff! It includes 3 changes of nightclothes just for labour! And 24 maternity pads!!! And 3 bras!!!! Surely I don't need all of this straight away? I have checked previous threads on mumsnet but still can't get my head round what I really need. Don't think evian facial spray is really me... Will I need a suitcase and will there even be somewhere to store one? My brain is fried - help!

Snobble Tue 28-Jan-14 16:25:28

I think it just accounts for worst case scenario. I wouldnt think you'd need 3 bras as the pads should soak up any leaking you'd have etc?

I have been advised by a few friends however to just bring a small travel suitcase and no valuables.

Im guessing the mat pads are probably going to be required however.

Cant remember where it was now, but i read somewhere i'd need 20 baby grows! I know they get mucky easy.... but still? Lol.

cravingcake Tue 28-Jan-14 16:46:36

I had a few bags, a small one for labour/birth & immediately after (toiletries, pj's, snacks, first clothes for baby). One with baby stuff (a few babygrows, vests & nappies), one for on the ward for me (pj's, pants, pads etc). These 2 can be left in car for DH to get or taken in with you. And an extra one which was left in the car/home which had yet more stuff that i may have required if i needed to stay in longer (feeding bras, comfy pj's etc) that i knew my DH wouldnt be able to find if i asked him to so just put together for ease (wasnt needed).

spritesoright Tue 28-Jan-14 17:15:23

I don't understand the breast pads one. It took several days for my milk to come in last time. But maybe quicker this time?
And 20 baby grows is just silly.
Similarly we live really close to the hospital but I hate the idea of having two bags - what if stuff I really need in one is in the other. I'm just stuffing it all in to one medium sized suitcase and I will patiently suffer the 'looks' from the midwives.

AppleYumYum Tue 28-Jan-14 17:23:11

That is a crazy list! even half that much is too much! You only get a little bedside table locker.

Maternity pads get two packs for hospital (the brick style ones as you'll appreciate the padding on your undercarriage!) and then have more packets at home waiting, they are the one thing you need more than you think and I ended up sending DH out to get more for both my births. You should change often to keep area clean esp if you have any stitches.

In hospital the baby won't go through that many nappies, colostrum doesn't cause many wet nappies and you'll prob just have a few explosive meconium poos, so no need to take up room with an entire pack, just put in 10 maximum. Some square cotton wool pads. I took 3 changes of baby clothes (vest & sleep suit/baby gro with feet combinations) plus a hat and then going home stuff - blanket and a little suit with a hood to go on over the clothes as it's a bit nippy this time of year.

1 bra is plenty, your milk won't come in till day 3 so until then no crazy leaking, take a few breast pads in case though (Lansinoh or Tommee Tippee are the best).

On the ward nice to have a dressing gown, slippers, and comfy, stretchy clothes to change into after birth. Most important is a 5 pack of nana style cotton undies, black as they will get blood on them. For birth just a loose T-shirt or night dress you don't mind getting dirty will do, or your bathers top if you are going to try the pool - they have gowns if you really need to change again. Toiletries/make up and yes variety of nice snacks as sometimes food is dire or they give you a sandwich at 5.30pm for dinner then nothing else and you'll be ravenous! midwives do like you to have some sweets for energy to suck in labour, I liked having ribena to drink too. You'll want your phone charger and I took a small camera, not our big expensive one (DH bought it in for a few photos then took it home).

You can always pre pack going home bag with your outfit and for your baby and have in boot for your DH to bring in when he collects you.

Good luck!

FredFlintstonesSister Tue 28-Jan-14 18:03:24

That sounds a bit more like it! Do I need to bring my own towels for showering?

TimothyClaypoleLover Tue 28-Jan-14 18:12:41

You never need as much as they tell you. First time I packed as though I was going for a week away. Second time round just took the bare minimum. If you live close to the hospital it will be easy for DH to pop home and get anything you have forgotten.

Babies only need couple of changes of clothes and handful of nappies. Agree, only one bra and couple of breast pads as milk doesn't come in straight away. If you want to you only need to take the clothes you are wearing as I changed into nightie on arriving at hospital and then just put my faithful leggings and shirt I arrived in back on for going home. Flip flops for padding about hospital were great. Toothbrush and few toiletries but you might not want to bother with make-up as putting my face on was the last thing on my mind after the birth - unless you want the Bounty photo shoot!

And yes, you will need to take your own towel.

jazzyjenbo Tue 28-Jan-14 18:22:05

I had a 1 large bag (gym bag style) with clothes for me and baby and then 1 bag with toiletries in it.
Hospital bag for you
2 pairs of pj's
1 nighty
10 pairs of big knickers (they will prob get dirty so just throw away)
1 bra
Dressing gown
Towel bath and hand

Hospital bag for baby
5 vests
5 baby grows
Hat mitts
Little toy
Nappies (about 10 per day)
Wipes (they insist on cotton wool but believe me u can not get the poo off with water!!)
Nappy bags


About 30 mat pads.. U can go through 2/3 per hr post birth
Toilet wipes (softer than paper on ur bits)
2in1 shampoo
Body wash
Make up
Hand mirror
Small bit of baby shampoo

I also packed a small baby changing bag and put it with the carseat for my hubby to bring in when we were coming home from hospital.
.. Clothes for me
.. Coming home from hospital clothes for baby

jazzyjenbo Tue 28-Jan-14 18:25:11

Missed of afew breatpads and also baby milk if ur not b/f.. They wont giv u milk unless u hav probs b/f and ur baby hasnt fed.

Coveredinweetabix Tue 28-Jan-14 18:42:28

I lived 45 mins from the hospital and was going in for an induction so had loads of stuff and no one batted an eye lid. They actually had supermarket trolleys just inside the door of the labour unit to put your stuff in.
I had a similar list to Jazzy except that I also included a pillow & lots of snacks (needed as gave birth at 4am having not kept anything down for 48 hours and wasn't given any food until lunchtime). For DC2, we also took a change of clothes for DP in case I vomited all over him again/he just felt a bit grotty having been up all night & in the same outfit.
In the baby bag, I had one freezer bag with a babygro & vest in labelled "less than 7lbs" and one saying "more than 7lbs". At home, I'd left things in clear piles so that I could give DP instructions as to exactly where to find things. I was inspired to do the latter by a friend who sent her DH home to get her grey trousers & he turned up with the skinny grey jeans she'd only been able to wear on skinny days pre-pregnancy as opposed to her grey maternity tracksuit trousers!

PastaandCheese Tue 28-Jan-14 19:04:58

Don't knock the face mist..... I can't tell you how hot I was in labour last time. Like hell's kitchen. I mainly thought about the paper fan i'd been given as a favour at a wedding abroad years ago wishing I had it with me!

I agree most of that list is nonsense and I'm a light packer but I have got face mist and a paper fan this time!

I agree with your plan re two bags but maybe leave the spare stuff in the car to save your DH having to repark if you do have to stay in and need it.

FredFlintstonesSister Tue 28-Jan-14 19:16:08

Ok, definitely think the bag I had planned to take is too small. Going to go for a rucksack packed with things for labour and immediately after, and a gym bag in boot with everything else. What should I do pjs wise? Currently wearing bottoms size 14 but was an 8 pre pregnancy. Usually wear "low rise" but figure c-section is not compatible with this style! I have visions of Jammies falling down or not fitting over massive maternity pads!

FredFlintstonesSister Tue 28-Jan-14 19:18:19

Oh, and I've just added fan to the list. Not really knocking face spray, I just really hate getting my face wet! Someone suggested facecloth as an alternative - bathroom in room so DH can run back and forth keeping it cold and wet!

PastaandCheese Tue 28-Jan-14 19:31:40

And a straw..... It's hard to hang over a birth ball and drink from a bottle. A straw takes no room and solves this practical issue....!

In the absence of the much longed for fan the only thing I got out of my bag in labour was the straw. DH says he's just bringing a straw in his top pocket this time.

On reflection I'm the worst person to give advice on this topic aren't I?! I didn't even make it into my nightdress as baby was coming quickly so it didn't really occur to me aside from the odd wail that I did have one in my bag.

Do you have any pj bottoms with a tie on them so you can adjust them according to size and around any section scar?

FredFlintstonesSister Tue 28-Jan-14 19:43:34

Straw added to list ( frantically scribbling). I do have one pair of draw string pjs but they're white! Perhaps not that practical... Had a quick look in tesco today for a cheap, dark pair but no cigar. I'll have a look in m&s and New Look tomorrow for some.

AppleYumYum Tue 28-Jan-14 20:07:47

Yes I forgot, definitely take your own pillow, in a coloured pillowcase so they don't mistake it for a hospital one. I hate the crunchy plastic covered ones they have, you usually only get one on the bed and it is nice to have a little piece of home.

My hospital had towels, they fetched some for me when I had a shower in my labour room before being moved to pn ward. Then after that there was a big linen trolley near the midwives station which had towels, gowns, baby blankets, sheets for the baby cots, burping cloths etc. Have you had a tour there or any antenatal classes, the midwives can prob tell you what they have there (towels, nappies, cotton wool sometimes provided etc)

Yes to whoever said those wet toilet wipes, I took a pack this time around, so much softer and cool on the nether regions wink

PotatoPolly Thu 06-Feb-14 20:59:47

Very grateful for this thread, exactly what I've been looking for! Thanks for all the advice!

HorraceTheOtter Fri 07-Feb-14 14:59:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

traininthedistance Sat 08-Feb-14 09:50:31

Oh and re size of pyjamas, remember that the uterus doesn't shrink down immediately afterwards so you'll still need maternity size bottoms for a week or so. I didn't have a section but assume it's similar in that it takes the uterine and tummy muscles a while to contract back. And you won't want anything constricting over the tummy or near the CS scar. So definitely bring the larger pyjamas!

boopdoop Sun 09-Feb-14 08:53:54

If you are near a primary they do black or navy drawstring lightweight pj bottoms for £6... I think I might live in them for a while after the birth!!

boopdoop Sun 09-Feb-14 08:55:14


ch1134 Sun 09-Feb-14 13:00:17

3 x nighties (mine kept getting covered in blood)
lots of maternity pads
lots of black pants
2 x dark coloured tracksuit or pyjama bottoms
comfy vest/ t-shirts
shampoo and conditioner, comb, moisturiser
phone/ camera + charger
travel pillow to sit on in the car home
sports bottle for drinking water
CDs/ MP3 player

5 x vests
3 x sleepsuits
a pack of newborn nappies
3 x muslin squares
cotton wool for changing nappy
hat (maybe a couple as sizes vary a lot)

FredFlintstonesSister Sun 09-Feb-14 15:27:08

So would that be for 3 nights stay? I think I might e underestimating how long I'm going to be in for!

ch1134 Sun 09-Feb-14 16:25:03

That was for one night! Well, into hospital at 6am, baby born at midnight, on ward at 4am and home 6pm... So Sat morn to Sun eve. But would have lasted me if I'd stayed maybe a few nights I'm sure

NickyEds Mon 10-Feb-14 15:06:45

I think everones got it more or less covered - snacks were really good- cereal bars and percy pigs were all OH ate for 30 hour labour that started at 6am so he didn't eat for even longer. In fact I'd pack a little bag for birth partner- snacks, phone and charger, money, deodrant, change of underwear and top and their toothbrush. And definately a straw!
I took a towel but after being in pool I needed more and hospital provided- they won't leave you soaking wet!!!

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