Just under five percent of all women have their baby on the day predicted by their gynecologist, the remaining 95 percent give birth to their children two weeks before or two weeks after the calculated due date. While this isn't a big deal and is within the normal range of fluctuations, it can quickly become stressful if labor suddenly starts - and the hospital bag hasn't even been packed. It is recommended here that pregnant women should have gathered everything they need for the delivery room and the first few days after the birth by no later than the 36th week of pregnancy. In the following checklist for expectant parents, the most important things for the upcoming hospital stay are listed in detail.
In order for a newborn to receive its birth certificate in the clinic, you must either present your marriage certificate or – if you are not married – your birth certificates and, if applicable, an acknowledgment of paternity. If you have a family register, you must also pack this in the hospital bag as well as the following important documents:
At the latest when the contractions start, you will be very grateful for the ready-packed hospital bag: In order to make your stay in the delivery room as pleasant as possible for you, you should definitely bring comfortable clothing - otherwise the hospital will give you a classic nightgown provide. Therefore, it is better to take the following with you:
Since you cannot know in advance how much time you will actually spend in the hospital, you should pack the essential hygiene items you need for daily personal hygiene, such as:
So that you can keep friends and family members up to date, you should also pack your charging cable in the hospital bag in addition to your smartphone. You can use your phone to take your baby's first photo, but a good SLR camera can usually take even better photos. Another useful and practical companion is the breastfeeding pillow, which you can use before, during and after the birth to optimally support your body and your baby.
After birth, your newborn will be taken care of in the hospital with everything it needs. However, if you want to leave the clinic, it is your turn to provide your baby with everything you need. Starting with clothing, changing things and safety shells for your car. So that you are prepared for all eventualities on the way home, we recommend the following basic equipment for babies:
Once the hospital bag is packed, you can already pack the diaper bag for your unborn baby. Depending on how long your journey home takes, mishaps can quickly happen on the way. For this reason, you should carry all the essential items you need to change diapers - from the changing mat to wipes to plastic bags (for the dirty diapers if there is no garbage can nearby). So that you do not experience any nasty surprises, the following things should not be missing in the diaper bag:
There is no question that a diaper bag must first and foremost be practical. Nevertheless, you should think carefully beforehand about which model is right for you. Especially if you want to use the bag when your child no longer needs it, you are spoiled for choice: For example, if you generally prefer large handbags, shoppers or shoulder bags are well suited - but you are more the backpack type, to keep your hands free you should opt for a diaper bag that you can also carry on your back. This makes sense especially if you often carry your baby around in a sling on your body - then a shoulder bag would only be a nuisance.
The closure is also crucial if you have to quickly change your child's diaper. Especially when your baby doesn't want to lie still and you have to hold it with one hand, zippers can be very cumbersome. Magnetic fasteners, press studs or Velcro fasteners are the better choice here, so that you have all the important things (diapers, wet wipes, pacifiers, drinking bottles, etc.) that are in the bag to hand as quickly as possible.
The material of the diaper bag is at least as important. If you choose a chic leather model, you should be aware that the bag is very robust, but also prone to stains. In addition, the material has to be impregnated regularly to protect it from rain. Changing bags made of easy-care materials such as cotton, PVC, nylon and polyester are more suitable here. They have the advantage that they are all washable or water-repellent.
Many diaper bags come with accessories, such as a changing mat (padded and washable), a bottle warmer or even a small bag that you can close. Depending on which model and which brand you choose, the number of parts included in the overall package varies. It is therefore worth checking the accessories before you decide on a diaper bag.
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