What the heck should I pack in my bag for birth?!
Is this question popping into your head as you approach the final weeks of pregnancy? Are you googling different lists and they all seem so different and everyone has different ‘’must haves”? Because that was me, and that’s also the same situation for a whole lot of parents-to-be. You find yourself questioning if slippers and a bathrobe are really really essential.
I’m going to be another one of those blog posts trying to advise you on what to pack. But I’m going to do it a little differently. Because your needs may not look like mine or your cousin’s girlfriend. I am going to try and encourage you to think about basics needs you may have during birth and postpartum, and pack accordingly.
So here we go!
First and in my opinion most important need is: comfort. Believe me when I say that being comfortable in the environment you give birth is a MUST. It can literally have an effect on your birth outcome. Just like for the birth, during your early postpartum days, comfort is of very high importance. Everything you bring in your birth bag, should have the purpose of bringing you comfort. So, ask yourself, what makes you feel comfortable? Is lighting a big thing for you? Are you attached to your pillow? Do you think you will want to labor completely naked or do you want to bring a comfortable bralette? Make sure to think about comfortable clothing for postpartum. High rise undies and a good nursing bra or loose bralette are always a must.
Now it’s time to think about what’s in your birth plan? Is there specific comfort techniques in there that you need equipment for? Like a tens machine, a rebozzo, a heat pack, essential oils, massage equipment…? So many options, so figure out what you want in labor and don’t forget to pack the things you need.
I would also suggest snacks! Depending on where you give birth, you are usually allowed to eat if you have not received an epidural. I recommend keeping hydrated and eating light snacks because you will need that energy when it comes time to push your baby out. Bring snacks that you like and drinks that will keep you energized. I like Gatorade and protein bars.
You also need to think about recovery. Now every hospital/birth center provide different things so it’s a good idea to check with them before packing these things. You will need pads or adult diapers. I personally really like these pads, they are organic, very long and comfortable. You will also need a peri bottle (to use when you pee). Another thing that I recommend bringing but is not necessarily a necessity is a perineal spray that has healing essential oils. This made a huge difference in my postpartum and in a lot of my clients.
Next will be things for your baby and your partner. Your baby will only need very few things: hats (x2), footed pyjamas (x2), diapers and wipes, and blankets. In postpartum, you will spend most of the time with baby doing skin to skin so they will rarely be dressed. Even when not doing skin to skin, they can just be wrapped up in a blanket. For your partner, ask them to pack their most comfortable outfit x2 and that’s pretty much it!
I think I have covered most of what you need to pack in your birth bag. Just keep in mind COMFORT and pack things that make you feel that way.
This is something we will cover in our prenatal appointments together if you hire me as your doula! I am available virtually or for Ottawa and Gatineau as a doula.