Homebirth supplies???

homebirth supplies

I just got a list from my midwife for supplies we need to buy for our upcoming homebirth.  She does have a “birth kit” set up through a website so I can easily just order everything together for about $30.

~1-2 dozen large “chux” pads (basically like flat, adult diapers… puppy pads work just as well, yea???)
~1 box sterile gauze sponges (4×4’s)
~1-2 boxes of large overnight sanitary napkins or a box of adult diapers (AWESOME)
~1 peri-bottle (small squeeze bottle)
~1 bottle of hydrogen peroxide
~1 sterile bulb syringe
~1 unopened bottle of olive oil or other oil for perineal massage
~2 large trash bags for soiled linens and trash
~large piece of plastic or plastic shower curtain or flannel-back plastic table cloth to cover mattress or floor

She also  mentioned to have the following available:

~thermometer
~flashlight with new batteries
~roll of paper towels
~camera/video camera with film/batteries
~3 washclothes and 4 large bath towels
~extra sheets, towels, and pillows
~heating pad or hot water bottle
~clothes and diapers for the baby
~1 large pan or bowl (for hot water)
~food and drink for labor (straws are handy too)
~Ibuprofen (NOT for use during pregnancy, fyi)
~Gatorade, Emergen-C, or some other electrolyte balancing fluid

Obviously I’m new at this so help me out! All the above is fine and dandy, I can do that. But what about things for ME? For labor and birth and postpartum. I don’t need to worry about packing for a hospital (knock on wood) and I can basically have anything I want at home…. so…. what should I get?!

I just randomly googled for homebirth supplies and found a couple kits. I’ve never heard of these and am wondering if they’d be useful or if I should be getting something else? Or nothing at all?

Labor Complex Homeopathic ($22.95): it says to use it during your last week of pregnancy. Contains:

  • Alteris Farinosa
  • Caulophyllum
  • Actear Racemosa
  • Arnica Montana

Labor Support Synergy ($14.95): this is just aromatherapy.. may help the uterus contract? Contains: Lavender, Jasmine, Clary Sage and Rose.

Candles sound nice… a music playlist… I have my “ICAN VBAC” bracelet and was going to buy these bracelets (from bringbirthhome.com), but they’re sold out:

I love the idea of having affirmations up around the house. Maybe birth art (that I haven’t started yet) or positive sayings. I love the “blessingway” that The Feminist Breeder had. It’s like having a shower, but it’s not about gifts–it’s about the mom. Friends each bring one special bead and you can make it into a necklace or bracelet for the mom to wear. You can also have them bring (or mail) a piece of cloth with a saying or a drawing or anything positive and awesome on it–to string into a banner and hang in the birthing area.

If you’ve had a homebirth, did you have anything special around the house? Did you buy anything extra? Any homeopathic remedies or herbs I should try?

13 comments to Homebirth supplies???

  • My sister isn’t planning a homebirth, but I would LOVE to get her one of those bracelets for her June delivery!

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  • Rachel N

    Earth mama angel baby makes some postpartum products that I really want to try next time. The bottom balm sounds like it would be soothing.

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  • Jen @ SlightlyCrunchyMama.com

    Get two peri bottles! You will want to use it for awhile and one will get old after awhile. Also, I thought that adding a few drops of Calendula oil to the water in the peri while rinsing helped healing.

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  • Ali

    Wash Cloths are great during labor if you want a cool cloth on your head and the MW will use one to help clean you up after the birth to check for tears. We went through a ton because I kept changing to a different room in the house and we left the cloth behind!

    Postpartum I wanted fruit really badly, so maybe have some on hand, I also drank a ton of watered down juice. (helps with going to the bathroom PP too!)

    In my peri bottle I used a little iodine and lots of witch hazel. (Get two bottles of witch hazel if they’re small, it goes quickly!) I also LOVED putting a frozen pad on (cover with witch hazel and freeze before the birth, then have someone get you one every few hours!) I only did a few of these but I wish I had done like ten! (I used infant and preemie sized prefolds rather than disposable pads).

    Also Earth Mama Angel Baby postpartum products are a must have. I didn’t want to spend the money but after the birth I ended up getting the bottom balm and wished I had had it from the beginning. I also wish I had had the booby tubes and nipple cream! Also get herbs for a few sitz baths.

    I also only had three nursing tanks (from target, they rock!) because I didn’t know how big my boobs would get, but they’re stretchy so even though the M were tight, they worked and it was a week before I could have someone get me some size L’s. So stock up on nursing tanks or have someone prepared to go get you some! It was horrible trying to have visitors and not having anything to wear while I was leaking all over the place!

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  • Mary Michaud

    I third the Earth Mama Angel Baby products. I haven’t tried the postpartum ones myself yet (will anytime though, due anyday! and my order just got here. 🙂 … but I gave the bottom spray to my sis-in-law and she raved about how much it helped and likewise started giving it herself as baby shower gifts (since a sweet lady gave me heating rice packs for my baby shower, i’ve tried to always include something for the mama for baby showers). I would get the bottom spray, bottom balm, postpartum bath herbs and monthly comfort tea — all if i could, but i’m limiting myself to the spray and tea (financial reasons, otherwise i would!).

    Do get juices/energy drinks too. I am stocked with my favorite Fuze, a few Vitamin Waters, and the midwife-suggested Recharge (which i tasted and don’t like, but will give a try). Have a sampling on hand, and teas too.

    And some kind of (portable!) heating pad – that rice pack i mentioned earlier was a lifesaver during the first few hours of labor. I might try to whip up some smaller flax seed packs too.

    And I’m going to try some version of the cooling pad (probably using mama cloth or flannel pads) like the previous commentor mentioned… soaked in herb tea or witch hazel as she suggested or some such and frozen.

    My midwife recommended having arnica or motherwort or some such on hand for after birth. I have some motherwort. I’d make sure your midwife knows what you’re planning to use, and she might have suggestions or resources.

    I’ve also been putting together a music playlist. Not sure if i’ll use it, but it’s made of songs that are upbeat, encouraging, and tend to have a “you can do this” “keep going” theme. 😉

    And bravado bras are a must.

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  • Zach

    We didn’t have a homebirth, but we labored at home for the first 63 hours of a 68 hour labor! (oy.)
    Things that were really useful for us were easy food to eat and make, a contraction timer on our smartphones, and a blow-up pillow for the bathtub. My wife labored for many hours in our small bathtub, and she got bruises on her knees from kneeling for so long. Some sort of pad there would have been good (eventually we used a towel, but a soft foam pad would have been much better).
    Right after the birth I fed my wife one of those little peanut butter and chocolate squeeze packets. She hadn’t eaten in I think 40 hours or something, so it was important!
    She was also incredibly thirsty, and particularly for Gatorade because she was so exhausted and hungry. The best present we got in the hospital was someone bringing us a 64 oz bottle of blue Gatorade.
    The sitz bath kit they give you at the hospital would be nice for you to have, too. I know it has been very helpful for my wife.

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  • kia

    One of my fave blessingway activities is to use the string to tie around your wrist as you recite the names of the women in your lineage. It is a great affirmation of your ability to have this birth as your mothers before you did so as well.

    My midwife’s kit was available at our local cloth diaper service – super easy. We were also required to get Rescue Remedy Spray, an herbal sitz bath (and the bath apparatus to use it on the toilet was in the kit) however my first one was in a bath my midwife gave me and the baby on our day 1 care, I had Recharge instead of Gatorade and even then it was diluted. Also, Orange Recharge is the best flavor IMHO. I also made popsicles of coconut water, cinanmon, and a dash of vanilla extract for electrolyte loss.

    Have an extra $40 around in case you need something last minute and have a friend who will do this for you and leave it at your doorstep without disturbing your labor.

    A big thing with the shower curtains or whatever you use is to off-gas them as much as possible before you need to use them. I left mine on a clothesline for a couple of days.

    Do have a small bucket around if you need it to vomit as you enter your active labor.

    For you have some fun comfort things around for after. I had a bomber of a brew from one of our microbreweries in our fridge for months. I think I enjoyed that a week after having the baby with some friends and good cheese while watching a soccer game.

    My midwife was hilarious and her list included food for me as well as yummy food for her and the 2nd midwife. During my long labor I made a peach cobbler, a chicken curry, and an eggplant parmigiana just to keep myself busy. Those midwives ate well.

    Now one of the sweetest things you can have after your little is born is an in-home post-partum massage. If you have friends still looking to give you that awesome gift… that is it!

    You pretty much have everything for babe since I imagine you still have Ryan’s baby things. For you – just whatever is going to comfort you and make you feel special as your hormone production switches off and restarts back in the adrenals, etc. Good food, soft nursing wear, EMAB post-partum items are just a few.

    WISHING YOU ALL KINDS OF LIGHT AND LOVE! You will rock this VBAC mama.

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  • I’m adding replies from twitter in case anyone else is reading to learn, too!!

    @swimminglynn: I’m planning a home birth in a month. Clariy sage oil suggested to me as meant to be natural pain relief.

    @heartsandhandss: don’t do Gatorade. Just get juice or water and add chlorophyll. Helps so much more than just electrolytes

    @outtajo: Something comfortable to rest in immediately after birth, once settled. Smthing breastfeeding-friendly & will make you feel good.
    -After the first few days, we used XL prefolds as layers under the babe for sidelying breastfeeding dribbles & diaper leaks.
    -Also, good freezer foods for quick postpartum meals in 1st days. Nutrient-dense, iron, protein, etc. Greek yogurt a good snack
    -Get a plastic mattress cover. Avail @ http://birthwithlove.com. Just a few $, useful if you end up in bed at all. Save your mattress. Even if you don’t labor in bed, keep on (under sheets) first couple of days. Great for all the leaking from you & babe 🙂

    @anderzoid: no need for Gatorade, make ur own or buy electrolyte water so it doesn’t have all the yucky additives. Plus don’t get red…
    … As a friend reminded me. When u start puking red jello every1 kinda gets freaked thining blood. Purple is ok.
    -I was so thankful for Floradix post Partum. & essential oils during labor. & a sitz bath herb mix already there.
    -Coconut water & electrolyte water (NOT Gatorade or red dyed food)
    – I also liked having cabbage on hand for the first day of breast engorgement.

    @mamacavy: epsom salt and witch hazel were the things I kept sending my husband out for. A heating pad for post-labor pains.

    @ritosgirl: definitely buy puppy pads! much cheaper than the chux pads. check out laborade. also lavender epsom salts for a soak post baby.

    @mommy2adia: chap stick! It’s the only thing I’ve ever needed in labor.

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  • Carrie Phelps

    My daughter just experienced her first home birth 10 weeks ago & is so happy with having made that decision. Best of luck to you!

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  • stacy h

    your list sounds a lot like mine! i didn’t use all of it. but you never really know what you’ll need. i gave birth in a portable hot tub so the mess was mostly contained. loved the chux pads for post birth laying in bed mess =) i’ve never liked the peri bottle, just used wet/warm cloth wipes to dab. also fourth earth mama angel baby stuff- made ahead and froze the bottom herb bath pads and then soaked my cloth pads in leftover tea and froze those. i think they say first 24hrs do ice, then switch to heat for healing.
    freezer meals is a must, although i wasn’t hungry after my 3rd birth(which was my homebirth) because it was so precipitous.
    and of course, i had my hypnobabies on in the background =) which by the way, if i haven’t said something before let me warn you now. no one knew how far into labor i was because of how well hypnobabies was working. which would have been fine except how fast it all went. make sure everyone knows to keep up with the emotional and physical support even if it seems like you aren’t that far or are ‘handling it well.’ my doula didn’t call our midwife to tell her to come when i told her to/had my husband tell her(he was too exhausted to function due to working so many hours beforehand). she took it upon herself to ‘see how far i was’ before letting the midwife know… which meant my midwife walking in 3mins before the birth.

    blessings to you! all will go great!

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  • Not sure if you see these as separate, but stuff to help during labour:
    – Swiss ball/yoga ball. I bounced gently on it, or just sat. Sometimes it helped reduce pain, sometimes it intensified the contraction, but both were useful. You can also put it on the couch and hang over it.
    – Food! Eat while you still can. Keeps your energy up. And have your husband eat as well, when he can.
    – I know you said you don’t have to pack for the hospital, but it IS a good idea to pack a bag just in case. That way you won’t have to fumble for stuff if something does happen. I didn’t need to go to the hospital during labour, but afterwards they did take me, just to check if I didn’t have more tearing than the MW could handle/needed stitches. Basics like your insurance things, ID, phone numbers, an extra set of clothes.
    – Remember you’re working TOWARDS something, don’t fight labour. Keep moving, keep doing what YOU feel is comfortable or helping. Don’t be afraid to try something, and don’t be afraid to tell people something is not working. Have faith in your body.
    – I’m sure you have, but read about the stages of birth, and know that a certain point will most likely come where you’ll think (or yell): I CAN’T do this. It’s a good stage – it means you’re getting very near the end. Tell your husband to remind you of this.

    Are you still going to have your placenta encapsulated? I think that’s so cool.

    Umm otherwise, supplies wise nothing really. Food, drink, perhaps a breastpump (rented or bought) and some lanolin/nipple cream? All other stuff is pretty easy to get anyway, should you want something. I’d maybe also get a sort of support network organized: think entertainment for Ryan, lists of things people can do for you (bring food, clean, take Ryan out, keep you company). Lots of one hand snacks.

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  • I am soooooo glad you’re going to be able to have a homebirth this time around. I know that’s what you want, and I’ll be sending lots of love and good energy your way! <3

    [Reply]

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