In the last few months of pregnancy, there are a few things to think about. Remember the signs of premature labour (more information in A Healthy Start for Baby and Me, available from Best Start www.beststart.org). You may also go into labour a week or two before or after your due date. The following are some things to have ready before baby is born.
1. Calling your health-care provider
- Health-care provider’s phone number
- Hospital phone number, if you are having a hospital birth
- Be ready to tell them…
- When did contractions start?
- Have you had bloody show?
- Have your membranes ruptured (water broken; note time and appearance)?
- How long are contractions (How many minutes are there from the beginning of one contraction to the beginning of the next contraction)?
- Other symptoms (nausea, back pain)?
- Phone number for people you need to contact before leaving home
2. Your suitcase packed with the following (for hospital births)
- Nightgown or pajamas
- Housecoat and slippers
- Sanitary pads (super absorbent and/or specifically for postpartum or overnight use)
- Nursing bra
- Toiletries (soap, shampoo, etc.)
- Joy of Parenting
- A focal point, backrub tools, massage oil, music and something to play it on, etc.
- Birth plan
- Disposable diapers if you want to use them in hospital
- Your own pillow
- Don’t forget your Health card and any supplementary insurance plan card
3. An extra bag for coming home (bring this to the hospital at discharge)
- Mom’s homecoming outfit (fits third to fourth month of pregnancy)
- Undershirt or onesie
- Baby’s homecoming outfit (sleeper and hat)
- Light to heavy blanket (depending on the season)
- Baby’s car seat!
4. At home have the following:
- Meals ready for the week or two after you come home
- Laundry caught up
- Help with household duties and new parent relief
- Baby’s room ready (see the section “Getting Ready for Baby”)