What to take with you for labour and birth

As you get closer to your due date it makes sense to have your bags packed and ready to go.

You’ll probably want to pack 2 bags, one with things you want for the actual labour and one with everything you’ll need afterwards – including something for your new baby to wear going home.

What to pack for labour

Your labour bag might contain:

  • an old nightdress (front-opening ones are easy for breastfeeding) or an old T-shirt
  • a music player and headphones
  • a dressing-gown and sandals or slippers
  • a hairbrush and hairbands if you have long hair
  • a wash bag with toiletries
  • a toothbrush and toothpaste
  • a mobile phone and charger
  • a camera
  • drinks and snacks for you and your partner
  • a water spray or a plant spray with a fine nozzle, and 2 facecloths for cooling your face and skin

What to pack for after the birth

Mum packing nappies and baby clothes for after the birth
Remember to pack your baby's nappies, vests and sleepsuits for after the birth NHS Health Scotland

Your bag for after the birth might contain:

  • 2 nightdresses or pyjamas
  • comfortable day clothes which are loose-fitting (front-opening clothes are easy for breastfeeding)
  • underwear, including large, close-fitting pants to hold maternity pads – you may find disposable pants useful for the first few days
  • a nursing bra
  • maternity pads or night-time sanitary pads
  • breast pads
  • tissues and cotton wool balls
  • unscented toiletries and cosmetics – if there’s no scent they won’t interfere with you and your baby bonding with each other
  • nappies, vests and sleepsuits for your baby

Translations and alternative formats of this information are available from Public Health Scotland.