You’re finishing the 37th week of your pregnancy. And it’s time for you to expect any signs of your baby to arrive. Because at 37 weeks, your pregnancy is considered to reach a full-term.
So you watch every sign. But nothing happens whatsoever.
Then another week goes by. Still, nothing happens. And if there’s no sign of your baby delivery in another week or so, the hospital will suggest you have an induction.
That’s what happened to me when I was expecting my first baby. I was booked to have a labor induction at the end of my 40th week. Because there was no sign of my baby’s arrival.
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Hospital bag that you need to prepare for labor induction
When you go for labor induction, you’ll think that you’re gonna have a normal delivery, won’t you?Â
But in my case, things happened differently.
After being induced twice within 24 hours with hardly any dilation at all, I had to bear the pain for more than 32 hours. Still no dilation.Â
So, after 34 hours since the first induction, I had to go for a C-section. Because my condition was getting very weak. And there was an indication that my baby was getting stressed as well.
Now, when you have a C-section, the hospital will normally keep you 3-4 days after the delivery. As for normal delivery, they usually keep you for 2 days.
Obviously, I don’t want you to go through what I went through. I truly wish you have a smooth normal delivery. However, it’s best if you’re prepared for whatever circumstances.
Therefore, the hospital bag that you should get ready ideally has everything you may need.
Before we go to the list, I should say that I don’t know what normal labour pain is like. Because I didn’t have it. But from what people told me is that the labour pain due to induction is multiple times intense compared to normal labour pain.Â
So, you may want to have things that can help you distract from the labor pain, if not relieve the pain.
For you, mom
1. A lovely hospital gown of your choice
This first item is not really a must. Because the hospital will provide for you anyway. But, it’s nice if you can have it. Especially, if you’re having your first baby. Because your delivery will feel very personal. And also your hospital gown can be your keepsake.
Also, you can choose the one with the front opening to make things easier for when you need to nurse your baby.
You can pack 1-2 gowns in your bag.
2. Nursing pyjamas with front openings
After the delivery when you had your first wash/ shower, you would want to change into comfortable pyjamas with front openings. One set of pyjamas should be enough.
3. Dressing gown
You must choose the dressing gown according to the season you are in. I had my first baby in summer, so the weather was very warm if not hot at times. So I packed a dressing gown in cotton in my bag.?
The dressing gown came handy when I had to go out and about to the bathroom. Or when I had a little walk to stretch my muscles around the ward.
You don’t need to pack more than one dressing gown.Â
4. Oversize top/ shirts/ blouses with front openings
You can put 2-3 pieces of your favorite tops/ shirts/ or blouses. Don’t forget to choose the ones with the front openings. So that it’ll be easy for you to breastfeed your baby whenever you need to. Unless of course, you decide to just bottle feed your baby from the very beginning.
5. Comfortable maternity leggings/ sweatpants
I understand that clothing and fashion are very personal. But for the sake of practicality and comfort, I’d say you should pick and pack your maternity leggings or sweatpants in your hospital bag.
You won’t need more than 2 pairs of leggings/ pants.
You may not need the socks at all. But after the induction, your body may feel cool due to the pain. So a pair of socks can give you warmth and comfort.
Take 2-3 pairs of socks if you’re having your delivery in cool/ cold seasons like autumn, winter, or spring. And you can pack 1-2 pairs of socks with you if you’re going for induction in summer.
7. Essential oils diffuser
One can argue that this item is not necessary. But if you’re like me who has a very sensitive nose and finds good aromatherapy can calm and relax your mind, please take your favorite essential oils with you.
You can take a diffuser and your chosen oil with you. Just make sure you choose the aroma that really suits you well.?
The essential oils are good to help ease the pain by distracting your mind from the pain.
8. Massage oil/ cream
A few hours after being induced, you’ll feel intense pain. As time goes by, the pain can get stronger and stronger. A gentle massage on the back or even on your feet can hopefully help distract you from the pain.
Having earphones with you to listen to whatever you like to chill out and rest will be super helpful to sidetrack your mind from the labor pain.
10. A book or magazine
You may find it difficult to concentrate on reading when the pain gets intense. But it’s always good to have an option.
For this item, I leave it to you to decide how many you need to add to your bag. Just bear in mind that you’re gonna have bleeding post-childbirth (lochia) which can be very heavy.
I personally took about a dozen comfy underwear with me.
12. Sanitary pads
I’d say you should get a few different types of sanitary pads. A normal type for you to use during the day, and a heavy type for nighttime wear.
For me, I used to change the pad whenever I went to the toilet, I ended up using around 4-5 pads within 24 hours.
13. Nursing bras
Make sure you get good quality bras that you can wear comfortably with nursing pads in.
2-3 bras should be enough for you.
14. Nursing pads
Whether you decide to breastfeed or not, your breast will produce the milk anyway. So 2-3 days after the delivery when your breast starts producing milk, even more, nursing pads will become handy for when the milk is leaking.
Whenever you change the pad, damp a small hand towel with warm water, use it to wipe and compress your breast for a little while. Then dry your breast before you put a new pad.
This can help to relax the breast muscles and lessen the discomfort due to the increased milk production.
You can put around 12-16 disposable pads or 3-4 washable pads in your hospital bag.
15. Nipple cream
Oh please don’t forget this nipple cream. Because I didn’t pack this with me when I had my first baby with the thought that I wouldn’t need it yet. It turned out that I needed it right away after my baby started feeding.
For some reason, the nipple became dry and sore that I was struggling to feed my baby. It was until the next day when my husband brought it that I felt much better.
So don’t copy my mistake. Put a good nipple cream quickly in your bag.
16. Breast pump
The first few days your baby may still find her/ his way to latch on your breast. There’s a chance that she/ he can’t feed as much as the milk produced in your breast.
To help the milk flow out better, you’ll need to use a breast pump. Or you may find it difficult just as I did with my second baby. I forgot to buy the pump before I went for labour. So the first few days I struggled a lot. My husband had to run around getting the pump.
17. Small hand towel
This will come handy for wiping and compressing your breast.
18. Water bottles
This one is just an empty used water bottle. You need it to clean yourself after you pee and poo. Rinsing with water is better than just wiping yourself with toilet tissues.
Washing with water will help clean the lochia from your vagina too. Basically, you’ll be more hygienic.Â
19. Body butter/ cream
I found that my skin was so dry after childbirth. I don’t know why. Especially around the tummy area.Â
So a good body butter/ cream can help moisturize your skin so that it won’t be dry and feel itchy.
This one is self-explanatory I suppose ?.
21. Makeup kit
You’ll definitely need this if you want to take a good picture of your first day being a mom ?.
Your hospital may have the tissues. But it’s nice to be prepared.
23. Mobile phone charger
This is obvious, isn’t it? Because you’ll need to send a message to your family and friends to spread the good news of your baby arrival. Not to mention taking tons of your baby pictures.Â
So you’ll need your phone to always have the battery charged up.
24. Snack bars/ energy bars
Although the hospital will always have food for you. Sometimes you will prefer a snack bar that you love as a treat.
This one is another treat for you too.
26. Some money
You never know when you may need to buy anything. Perhaps a nice cake from the hospital cafeteria.
For your baby
27. Babygrows/ sleepsuits
Forget about fancy baby outfits. When you just had your baby, you’ll want to simplify everything. That includes caring for your baby.Â
So babygrows/ sleepsuits are the best choices for your baby’s outfits. You can pack about 8-10 pieces of them in your hospital bag.
28. Baby vests
You’ll only need to take baby vests about the same number as the baby grows/ sleepsuits.
29. Baby blankets
If possible, get baby blankets that are made of 100% cotton so that they’ll be good for the baby’s skin.Â
You may want to take 2-3 blankets. One for you to swaddle your baby, one for you to use as a blanket. And another one for a spare.
30. Diapers/ nappies
Make sure they?re newborn sized diapers/ nappies.
As an idea, you may need to change your baby 4-5 times a day. So, you can take about 20 pieces with you.
31. Baby wipes
Another self-explanatory item.
32. Small bowl
You can get an ordinary small plastic bowl.
This bowl will be useful when you want to change your baby. So I would put some water in the bowl, wet the cotton wool in it, and clean my baby’s bum and genital area with a ball of wet cotton wool. Then I’d dry my baby with a towel.
I used to use cotton wool more than I used the baby wipes, especially during the day. Because I think pure water is best for a baby’s skin.
33. Cotton wool
As explained above.
This is another self-explanatory item, isn’t it? ?
35. Baby towel
Chances are you won’t need to wash your baby in the hospital. But it’s always good to be prepared.
36. Baby bottle
When I had my first baby, I was adamant to exclusively breastfeed him. However, the first few days my baby had difficulty latching on. Plus, it seemed my breast milk was not produced as fast as my baby’s demand.Â
So my baby was hungry and constantly crying that the hospital suggested to partly bottle feed my baby.
37. Baby pacifier/ dummy
This one is not necessary. It’s up to you. I had this in my hospital bag for both times I delivered my sons.Â
Interestingly, my first baby was ok with it and used the pacifier/ dummy. In fact, it seems the pacifier/ dummy helped him soothe himself to sleep. But my second baby used to hate it that not only he spat it out whenever I gave the pacifier to him, he would also cry.
Final thoughts on what you need to take in your hospital bag when you go for labor induction
When you’re scheduled to have a labour induction because your baby is overdue, you may want to take a look at your hospital bag again.Â
Because there are few extra things that you’ll wish you have during your bearing labor pain.
Little distractions here and there through your senses such as nice smelling essential oils, or relaxing music will be something you feel grateful for.
I pray that everything goes well with your induction process and that your baby will arrive well and fine.
If you find this post helpful, feel free to share it and pin it. You’ll also want to check out my other posts that you’ll love.
- How to cope with baby blues when you just relocated
- Top tips for a speedy C-section recovery.
- The most essentials for your baby in the first 3 months
- Self-care ideas for new mums far from home.
- Journaling for new mums: why and how you should do it.
- Journal prompts for new mums far from home.
Thank you for taking the time to read.
All the best.