It’s in the bag: packing for your baby’s birth

By admin
20 June 2014

Whether you’re preparing for the birth of your first baby or your firstborn’s baby brother or sister, we give you a handy list of everything you’ll need on your big day.

Most of you pregnant SuperMoms probably have older children at home so the birth of this baby won’t be your first experience of packing a birth bag. However, it’s amazing how much you forget between the birth of your first baby and their younger siblings. For you who are about to “go and collect” your firstborn’s baby brother or sister at the hospital and the moms who are making the trip for the first time, here’s a list of everything you’ll need on your special day.

There are so many things you need to think of when you’re getting ready for a new baby, it’s nice to know packing your hospital bag is something you can take care of in advance. Joann Lugt is a registered midwife practising in Cape Town. She offers antenatal classes to new parents and says the content of your hospital bag depends on whether you’re planning a natural birth or a Caesarean section.

For a natural birth, these things will come in handy:

  1. The right clothes: This includes comfortable slippers, a gown to use when walking around the labour ward (especially if you’re planning to have an active birth without epidural), warm socks, disposable maternity panties or old underwear, a bra which is easy for breastfeeding and at least two sets of nighties for before and after the birth. Make sure the nighties can open in front for easy breastfeeding. Also include an outfit to wear on your way home – this should still be a maternity outfit, as it will take some time to lose your tummy.
  2. A toiletry or vanity bag: This should include lip balm for dry lips, a hair elastic if you have long hair, face cloths, maternity sanitary pads, breast pads, and all the other things you usually take with for a weekend away such as a toothbrush and hairbrush (though make-up might not be necessary for this trip!)
  3. Massage oil: This is helpful if your partner is planning to rub your shoulders or back during labour. Lavender and rose geranium essential oils can be blended with a basic oil such as sweet almond, grapeseed or olive oil to give a pleasant smell.
  4. Something to keep you occupied during early labour: A magazine or iPod with music might come in handy.
  5. Snacks for you and your husband or birth partner: Labour can take more than a day and you don’t want your support having to rush away to find something to eat. Lugt recommends you freeze three bottles of water to sip on while you’re in labour, as it can help you keep cool. Clear fruit juice is also handy.
  6. Camera, with batteries fully charged!
  7. Your ID book and medical information.

If you’re planning a Caesarean you won’t necessarily need so much water or snacks as it generally goes much quicker than natural birth. You could also leave the massage oil at home.

And don’t forget, you’re going home with another person who also needs some space in your bag!

Bring this for your baby:

  1. A baby toiletry bag: Include bum cream, disposable nappies, surgical spirits to clean the umbilical cord, cotton buds and cotton wool, and baby wash.
  2. Clothes: Pack a vest, baby grow and receiving blanket for when you take baby home.
  3. And last but definitely not least (and one that people tend to forget): A car seat!

Checkers Baby

These products and much more are available at Checkers. Click here for more information about Checkers Baby.

-Dalena Theron

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