Expert Advice

Remember to Take the Essentials!

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Contractions happening, breathing happening, shoes on, partner ready, car in drive, hoping for good traffic…what are you missing? Oh, right — remember to take the essentials in your hospital bag so your birthing center or hospital birth is the one you imagined as you wrote your birth plan.

Making a hospital bag checklist gives you something to help you plan for your hospital or birthing center stay. Packing your hospital bag a couple of weeks in advance gives you time to repack, and pack again, as your desires or health change. Babies are notorious for coming ahead of due date, so unless you’re having a scheduled induction you may have to pick up and fly when you think you still have days or weeks to go.

In the rush, it’s easy to forget the essentials. From paperwork to eyeglasses to birth plan, you’ll want to have whatever is important to you, with you.



Do you know which forms you need to fill out and what documents you must have to move the intake process along as fast as possible?

Sitting in a wheelchair managing contractions while your partner negotiates without proper documentation isn’t pretty. Being separated while partner negotiates but compassionate nurses roll you away into Labor and Delivery isn’t so great either.

It could be the first crimp in your birth plan, and it’s avoidable with a little advance planning.

Once you’re settled in your room with partner by your side, those special scents or oils or vitamins listed in your birth plan could help just the way you imagined, or could leave you longing for them if they were forgotten.

Know how you wanted Usher to sing “Good Kisser” to you while you brought baby into the world? If it’s not in your hospital bag…

What about your requests for immediately after the birth? If your birth plan lists oral vitamin K or other special requests that aren’t birthing center or hospital routines, remember to bring them.

Along with everything else, a copy of your birth plan helps your birth team know what your preferences are so they can help give you the birth experience of your dreams.


To learn more about the essentials, download our free Birth Plan eBook now. After  three years of research, collaboration with more than 100 childbirth experts and resource centers from Healthy Child Healthy World to the American Association of Neonatal Nurses, the Best Ever Baby Birth Plan Guide is available for a free download.

This new resource for pregnant families is a compilation of top tips and advice from more than 20 nationally-recognized experts in the field including renowned pediatrician, Dr. Alan Greene and GraceFull Birthing founder, midwife Elizabeth Bachner.  These trusted experts offer thoughtful guidance for whatever type of birthing experience parents want, in whichever setting they choose.


Published: August 19, 2015 | Reviewed by: Kim Walls, Natural Products Expert, Elizabeth Bachner, LM, CPM, L.Ac., Midwife | Last reviewed: August, 2015

Kim WallsRemember to Take the Essentials!

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