Before going into labor, it is always a good idea to be prepared and organized. Even if you have a planned delivery date, you can easily get flustered and forget items when on the way to the hospital. If you suddenly go into labor, it is very likely you will forget something, so this is why it is a good idea to plan what to take and have everything ready in advance, or at least by the time you reach 36 weeks of your pregnancy. Keep in mind that space will be limited so you can’t pack too much either. There are, however, some items that you should take with to the hospital, as well as steps to help you feel prepared for this joyous occasion.
Pack Your Bags
Some people like to pack two bags, one for the delivery and immediately after the birth, the other for the time you are in the postnatal ward. An important item to make sure you remember is your birth plan, not all mothers have one, but it does help the doctor or midwife know your preferences and wishes should something occur. Along with this, be sure to bring your maternity records or any other important documents with you to the hospital, a clear record of your pregnancy will ensure the doctor knows exactly how to handle your labor. Along with that you should have a photo ID and any insurance information necessary. While these items are not necessarily essential to the labor itself, they are crucial to your stay in hospital going smoothly.
You should also pack a dressing gown, slippers that are easy to put on and take off, and an old nightdress or t-shirt for the actual delivery. Some women have found that their feet get cold during labor and have suggested bringing along a pair of socks just in case. The hospital may supply you with socks but it is probably a good idea to bring some as well. Remember to pack underwear and toiletries that you may need such as toothpaste and a toothbrush, deodorant, hair brush, lotion or massage oil, lip balm or any other items that will help you feel comfortable throughout the process. Some women like to use a birth ball to assist with labor, if you know that you would like to use one then be sure to pack your own as not all hospital will have one. You could also take some snacks and drinks to help you keep up your strength during a long labor. Isotonic sports drinks or glucose tablets are a great idea as well. If you like listening to music or reading books or magazines, then pack a couple of those to keep you relaxed and your mind occupied. You want to be as comfortable and relaxed as possible as well as appropriately prepared, the best way to do this is to start early and have a checklist, with that you are sure to have a great labor!