As your guess date approaches, packing a birth bag is essential. Around 36 weeks is a good time to start collecting things to have ready. We have put together a list of favorites for you.
- Snacks: Bring your favorite snacks for you and your partner. Think of things that are mild and easy to eat. Some good ideas are trail mix, protein bars, dried fruit, honey sticks, nut butter, instant oatmeal, and yogurt.
- Fluids: Bring a water bottle to keep near you at all times. Your partner can help remind you to hydrate through labor. It is also ideal to bring a few alternatives to water for both of you such as, coconut water, emergency-c, juices and natural popsicles.
- Clothing: For laboring, bring comfortable nightgowns, a robe, t-shirts or pajama tops. If you plan to labor in the tub and/or shower, you may wish to bring a sports bra or swimsuit top. If your partner would like to support you in the tub or shower, bring a swimsuit. Bring a pair of slippers and cozy socks.
- Lip Balm: In labor your lips tend to get very dry, especially during pushing. Have it ready to use and easily accessible.
- Hot Pack: Heat can be a wonderful comfort measure. You can use an electric heating pad, microwavable rice pack or hot water bottle.
- Music: Think about making a labor and birth playlist. This may be soft, slow songs, spiritual songs or even fun upbeat music. If your place of birth does not have speakers, pack your own.
- Essential Oils / Lotion: Bring your favorite oils and a plain lotion with you. Some recommended oils are peppermint (for nausea), clary sage (to help strengthen contractions), lavender (for relaxation). The lotion can help with massage.
- Hair Accessories: If you have long hair, you may want to put it up at some point during labor to get it out of your face. It can be nice to bring a headband too.
- Chargers: Be sure to pack phone chargers. If you are bringing a camera, bring a charger and extra batteries just in case.
- Clothing: Bring comfortable clothes to wear home. Something loose and easy to get on and off. Be sure to pack a change of clothes for your partner as well. If you are breastfeeding, bring a nursing bra.
- Baby Clothing / Blankets: For the ride home you will want an outfit for baby (onesie, footie pajamas, socks and a hat). Also bring at least 2 blankets.
- Toiletries: Pack a small toiletry bag for you and your partner. Just the basics is fine, toothbrush, toothpaste, face wipes and a hair brush.
- Car Seat: You will want to have your baby's carseat installed in your car at around 37 weeks so you are prepared to bring him/her home. You want to make sure that it is installed properly so give yourself plenty of time.