Updated 19 November 2014

Your hospital essentials

Having a baby comes with a checklist of essential items needed during and after the birthing process. We help you make your delivery and recovery a comfortable one.


Shopping and collecting everything that you and your baby will need in the hospital can be quite daunting. Here are our checklists for what we recommend you pack.

Your labour bag
This contains the items that you will actually need whilst giving birth.

  • Nightdress or old T-shirt to give birth in if the hospital does not provide for this
  • Small sponge or face cloth
  • Warm socks as your feet may get cold during labour
  • Cream or massage oil
  • Your birth plan
  • Notebook and pen
  • Lip salve
  • Massage tools that relax you
  • Music
  • Hot water bottle and ice-pack
  • Camera or video camera
  • Snacks and beverages for you and your partner

Your hospital ward bag

  • Front-opening nightdresses – two or three
  • Dressing gown and slippers
  • Toiletries and make-up
  • Tissues
  • Breast pads (two packets)
  • Nursing bras – at least two
  • Maternity sanitary towels - at least two packs
  • Underwear – stretch or disposable
  • Plastic bags for dirty washing
  • Bath towels x 2
  • Reading material
  • Day clothes to go home in (not your tightest jeans!)
  • List of phone number for your partner to call friends and relatives

Baby’s bag

  • Newborn disposable nappies – two packs (depending on what the hospital provides)
  • Barrier cream such as petroleum jelly (if the hospital does not provide this)
  • Wet Wipes
  • Surgical alcohol – one small bottle – to clean the cord
  • One warm receiving blanket to take baby home in
  • Clothes to take baby home in – babygro (stretch suit), vest and booties
  • Car seat for baby

(Ilse Pauw, Health24)


Get a quote


Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Live healthier

Up for grabs »

Win with NuSeed Win with MySmartkid Win a Canderel hamper

Win a LED 3D smart TV

Stand a chance of winning a Samsung UA55H8000 Smart 55 inch Curved LED TV valued at R20 000 from Save Hyper!

Medical marijuana »

'I used cannabis oil to cure my cancer' Could your doctor could be high? Dagga in medicine?

Medicinal dagga: the dangers can't be ignored

There is not sufficient evidence to support the potential medicinal benefit from cannabis use cautions an academic from Stellenbosch University.