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Making a birth plan

A Birth plan is a record of your preferences about what you might like to happen during labour and birth.

Some of the things to consider are

  • Your preference for place of birth (home, birth centre, hospital)
  • Who you would like to accompany you in labour and birth
  • Your preferences for managing with labour including use of water, massage, hypnotherapy, gas and air and other types of stronger pain relief such as an epidural
  • Other preferences such as positions for labour, the type of monitoring you might have for you and the baby, bringing in music
  • If you or your partner would like to cut the cord
  • If you would like to have skin-to-skin with your baby immediately after birth and delayed cord clamping
  • How you plan to feed your baby

For more details about Birth Plans and things to consider please see the links below:

What to bring in with you

As you approach 36 weeks of pregnancy, we encourage you to start packing a bag ready for you and your baby regardless of where you are planning to give birth.

You will normally stay in hospital from six hours to two days following the birth of your baby—therefore you need only bring enough clothes and other personal items for this length of time. If you stay longer you can ask friends or relatives to bring extra things for you. Whatever you decide to bring is your personal choice. We have put together some suggestions below.

For you

  • Any hospital notes, a copy of your birth plan and list of contact telephone numbers
  • An old t-shirt for labour or any comfortable clothing (including something to wear in the birthing pool if you wish – bikini top old t-shirt)
  • Pair of socks for labour
  • Personal items—toiletries, tissues, pillow, water spray, lip salve
  • Toiletries including soap, toothbrush, toothpaste and lip balm
  • Hair bands or clips for long hair
  • Energy tablets
  • Snacks, magazines, newspapers, puzzle books (for you and your partner)
  • Change for the carpark and snack machines
  • Breast pads
  • Maternity pads and disposable knickers
  • Towel/face cloth
  • Support bra to wear while breastfeeding
  • Dressing gown, slippers, nightwear
  • Music
  • Camera
  • Comfortable clothing to go home in
  • TENS machine if required

 For your partner

  • Comfortable clothing (remember it gets very warm in the unit)
  • Snacks (please note only mothers receive hospital meals in the maternity unit)

For your baby

  • Baby grows or gowns—baby grows are the best for warmth and comfort
  • Vests and cardigan
  • Hat ( for first 24 hours)
  • Baby bath towel
  • Nappies approximately 6-8 per day
  • Cotton wool/ and or non perfumed baby wipes
  • Baby blanket
  • Weather appropriate outfit to take baby home in
  • If you choose to bottle feed you will need to bring enough pre packed bottles of a newborn formula with you to last the length of your stay at least one ‘starter pack’ of first infant milk containing 6 bottles and 6 teats. These are disposable, sterile, single use bottles and provide the safest option when formula feeding your baby whilst in hospital. You can buy them from most local supermarkets. Please note that we are unable to store opened formula milk on the wards so please do not bring in large bottles of milk for your baby.

We recommend you use a car seat for your baby when travelling by car. Ensure that you know how to fit your car seat correctly.

Please do not bring valuables into the hospital. You are responsible for all items that you bring in.