Updated: Oct 25, 2021
Rosie Weatherly, is a Nurse, Midwife, Calmbirth educator and Mum of three has written this fantastic guide that we wanted to share with you.
Rosie provides couples with up to date, evidence-based and scientifically proven birth education. She offers face to face courses in Ballarat and surrounds, online courses, one on one as well as refresher courses.
When it comes time to pack their hospital bag, women often ask me ‘what do I really need?’.
The single biggest thing you need, is support! Emotional and physical support to help you through the ‘labour of love’. Its vital you have confidence in yourself and the birthing team around you (support people and hospital staff). Remember- SAFE SUPPORTED LOVED.
Here is a list of all the things that I believe will most likely get used, rather than be lugged around to be unpacked again once home.
With exception to your labour items, generally your partner can go home and collect any non urgent items such as more clothes for you or baby while you remain in hospital. So there is no need to over pack.
Ideally you will have your hospital bag packed around the 35-36 week mark (maybe even in the boot of your car), so its one less thing for you to do. I always have a small bag packed throughout my pregnancies for emergency hospital stays- just with a set of PJ’s, toiletries and thongs. Its also in a place easily explained to my husband, so even he would be able to find it if necessary!
Remember to wear very comfortable clothing for labour (and old! Incase you decide it’s easier to bin them rather than wash!).
Most hospitals in Australia offer between 2 and 5 night stays, depending on how you birth your baby.
Please chat to your care providers regarding any of the following items incase they already provide them for you!
What you might like while you are in labour?
Birth preference plan (a copy for your care provider/midwife and support people)
Aromatherapy essential oils & electric aromatherapy diffuser (check hospital policy)
Music (check if you need to bring a speaker), earphones
Camera (with full batteries)
Mantras or affirmation cards
Cosy comforts (photos, favourite pillow, special jewellery)
Heat packs (check your hospital if they allow) and eye mask
Hand massager so your partner can continue to massage for a looooong time.
Bathers for partner (& for woman while laboring in the bath/shower if wanted)
Change of clothes/underwear for partner
Small snacks & drinks for both mum & partner (things such as fresh/dried fruit, bliss balls, muesli bars, small nourishing mouthfuls are best)
Hair ties & lip balm
Drink bottle - with a straw is best. A drink such as a Gatorade/labour energy drink can be useful too.
Loose change for out of hours vending machine
Once your baby is born-
Thongs or easy to slip on shoes/slippers
loose fitting PJ’s
big undies- think granny style high waisted, cotton
maternity bra (no underwire), or singlets
comfy loose clothing that is easily assessable for breastfeeding (buttons are good, or a BF top, tracksuit pants)
toiletries (toothbrush, paste, shampoo, conditioner, soap, hand moisturiser, hairbrush)
maternity pads- at least 2 packets
breast pads- one packet (I would also recommend a packet of the Rite Aid hydrogel breast discs, or the Silverette Silver Nursing Cups)
disposable nappies if using 1x packet (require 6-8/day)
Wipes x1 packet
3 singlet’s 0000, 3 suits/nighties 0000, I jumper/cardigan, beanie x1
wraps x2, Blanket x2
*Tip- It’s a great idea to put the clothes you will want to put on after your first shower, together with underwear & a pad, and babies first outfit (plus beanie), in a small seperate bag, so you or your partner are not digging through your whole bag.
*another tip- put the hydrogel disc pads in the fridge. They are heaven when they are cold!
*and last but not last tip….buy baby singlets with snap buttons in the croutch and suits with zips! You’ll thank me later!
- Rosie Weatherly,