If you’re planning a home birth, you will need to gather up supplies for your birth. While your midwives will bring all the stuff they need to do their jobs, they won’t provide a lot of what you need when you are giving birth. That is up to you!
Many midwives sell birth kits, and/or provide you with a list of supplies to have on hand. I bought almost all the stuff on my midwives’ list the last time, but found some things just weren’t necessary. On the other hand, there might have been a couple of things I enjoyed that weren’t on their list.
Curious what should be in your home birth kit?
Please note you may not need to buy all of these items. Some you may have around the house, but you should gather them up and have them available for the birth.
- 15 – 20 large chux pads
- 15 – 20 small chux pads
- 1 - 2 dozen gauze pads
- 2 – 3 pairs of sterile gloves
- 1 bottle isopropyl alcohol or witch hazel
- 2 peri bottles (one for water, one for oil)
- 1 crock pot
- 2 large bowls (one for placenta, one in case you’re sick)
- 2 newborn hats
- 1 nasal aspirator
- 2 – 4 washclothes (sealed in a bag and baked to sterilize)
- 3 – 4 towels (sealed in a bag and baked — to keep you and baby warm/dry after birth)
- 3 – 4 receiving blankets (sealed in a bag and baked — to keep baby warm after birth)
- 3 - 4 sheets (sealed in a bag and baked — I’m not sure what this is for?? My midwives requested it but we never used it)
- 2 large, black garbage bags (one for trash, one for laundry)
- 1 set of clean sheets for your bed
- 1 drinking straw (so people can give you drinks easily)
- Olive oil or another oil in one of the peri bottles, for perineal massage
- 1 fish net (in case you, ah, poop in the pool during a water birth…)
- 1 large tarp (to go under a birthing pool)
- 1 birthing pool (if desired)
- 1 hose with sink adaptor (if needed for water birth)
- 1 pool cover (if needed)
- Herbal after-birth bath (if desired)
- Herbal pregnancy/labor tea or juice (something to drink during labor)
- Light snacks (frozen grapes have been suggested)
- Any comfort measures you want — tennis balls (for counter pressure), music, candles, essential oils, etc.
Okay, so that’s a lot of stuff. But that’s okay! Much of it — like garbage bags, straws, a crock pot — can be gathered from around your house.
The disposable supplies are mostly for your midwives and the birth itself. They’ll keep your sheets clean and make sure things that need to stay sterile, do. The crockpot and wash cloths are for perineal compresses (you may not need this if you have a water birth). The rest is explained above or self-explanatory.
Look for another post next week on what to expect at a home birth, and how some of these supplies may be used!
What was/is in your birth kit? Was there anything not on this list that you found helpful?
Top image by eyeliam