When you’re preparing a natural childbirth kit to bring with you to the hospital or birth center, it’s easy to go overboard with unnecessary stuff and fluff. Let’s discuss those essential natural childbirth kit items that you won’t want to leave home without.
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
Table of contents
Natural Childbirth Kit Item #1: Birth Plan/Preference
The hospital is often abuzz with people coming and going. Ensure that the doctors and nurses are all on the same page about your preferences by sharing your written birth plan. Don’t forget to review it with your doctor or midwife in the weeks leading up to your due date. Then, hand and a copy to your nurse once you’re admitted to the Labor & Delivery unit. (Learn the basics of how to write a slam-dunk natural childbirth birth plan.)
Since we’re talking about paperwork, you may want to bring along the labor notebook from your natural childbirth class, too. Some light reference material encourages your partner to stay calm by helping him remember the labor positions and breathing techniques. If needed, he’ll be prepared to step in and confidently offer ideas for new labor-coping options.
Natural Childbirth Kit Item #2: Birth Ball
A birth ball is one of the most versatile natural birth tools out there. You can sit on it and sway, rock, or do hip circles. Use it to support your upper body when you’re kneeling or leaning forward during labor. Or, lean into the ball to provide gentle counter pressure on your back. Whatever you do, be sure to bring it along on the big day.
Natural Childbirth Kit Item #3: Music & Speakers
I can’t imagine coping with natural childbirth without music. I’m a big fan of guided imagery and relaxation scripts, which I listen to throughout my pregnancy and then use again in labor to help me relax during contractions. Some moms prefer soothing tunes like Enya, while others go for pump-you-up music like the Rocky soundtrack. Whatever your fancy, be sure pack your favorite tunes, a device to play them on, and a speaker to project the sound. (Opt for some kind of speaker rather than headphones or earphones which may irritate you when you’re already uncomfortable, can’t be used if you labor in water, and have limited battery if wireless and an annoying wire if wired.)
Natural Childbirth Kit Item #4: Massage Tools
Basic massage tools are an absolute must. Not only do they help work deep into tired muscles, but they’ll save your partner’s hands during a long labor. No need to purchase anything fancy — tennis or lacrosse balls, rolling pins, and other simple tools will do the trick.
Don’t forget to toss in some rice packs to heat up in the microwave, as well as a gel ice pack or two. Heat can help take the edge off of contractions in early labor, while cold is great for persistent back pain.
Learn how to make your own rice packs: DIY Easy Heated Rice Sock
Natural Childbirth Kit Item #5: Food & Drink
Birth is hard work, and both you and your partner may need some extra energy if the labor gets long. Pack healthy, easy-to-digest snacks that you can eat quickly. Crackers, bananas, granola bars, and applesauce are all good options that tend to be easy on the stomach. Don’t forget water bottles for your partner (the hospital will provide you with water), and possibly an electrolyte drink like Gatorade for a quick pick-me-up.
Natural Childbirth Kit: Additional Items
We’ve covered the top 5 essential natural childbirth kit items that you won’t want to leave home without. But of course, you’re sure to have personal items that are meaningful to you. Supplement your kit with essential oils, balms, and toiletries as needed. Add in any special clothing or comfort items that will help you feel secure. When the time comes, you’ll be prepared to breathe deeply and enjoy the process of welcoming your little one into the world!
Kopa Birth’s online birthing classes allow you to prepare for natural childbirth in the comfort of your own home, 24/7. Enroll today in our free online childbirth class to learn more about preparing for natural childbirth.