If you’ve ever given birth, odds are pretty good you received a handful of “packing lists” from your mom friends that include all of the essentials for your hospital stay. As a first timer, I had absolutely no clue what I would need for the hospital so I relied on my mommy friends to help me pack (shout out to LRT for the most thorough and helpful packing list ever). Who knows if I’ll need or use all of these items but I’d rather over pack than under pack!
Soooo, what’s in my bag?
Hospital Bag Packing List
- Pajamas: Button up front shirts for easy nursing
- Robe, Slippers, Flip Flops & Socks: The hospital floors aren’t exactly awesome to walk around on so you may want to pack slippers that you’re okay with tossing afterwards.
- Yoga Pants (Maternity)
- High Brief Granny Panties: Make sure to get a size bigger than you normally wear.
- Maxi Pads: The hospital will provide mesh undies with extra thick pads (and send you home with extras). If the mesh panties aren’t your thing, a less bulky option is Always Overnight Ultra Pads with Wings (offer good protection but isn’t too thick).
- Go Home Outfit
- Nursing Sleep Bras: Go with the kind that come in small/medium/large sizes and wait to buy actual nursing bras until your milk comes in because your cup size will change.
- Nursing Tanks
- Pillow: Don’t use a white pillow case so your pillow doesn’t get stolen by the hospital.
- Toiletries: Lotion, Makeup & Wipes, Shampoo, Body Wash, Face Wash, Blow Dryer, Toothbrush, Deodorant, etc.
- Nursing Pads & Lanolin
- Chapstick, Gum, Hard Candies, Hand Lotion, Hair Ties/Bobby Pins: Have nearby for during labor.
- Pillow, Sheets & Blanket: Again, make sure you don’t bring a white pillow case so his pillow doesn’t get stolen by the hospital.
- Comfortable Clothes
- My Brest Friend Nursing Pillow: The nurses will show you how to nurse with the pillow you are going to use at home.
- Baby Blanket/Swaddling Blanket: Use the hospital blankets for swaddling so you don’t get yours dirty. Then use your nice blankets for pictures in the hospital and for the car seat on the way home.
- Go Home Outfit.: Of course you need one cute outfit for bringing baby home in! No need to bring lots of extra clothes for the hospital stay – the
nurses are already familiar with the hospital onesies and it makes for
less laundry once you get home.
- Accessories: Bring any beanies, bows, mittens, hat, socks, etc.
- Bottle: If you have to start pumping in the hospital, having the bottle you plan to use at home is helpful (especially if you plan to breastfeed) so the lactation nurses can show you how to “deep latch” a bottle nipple so baby has a smooth transition from bottle to nipple.
- Soothie/Wabbanub Pacifier
- Toiletries: If you plan to use any special lotions, bring them. Otherwise the hospital uses Johnson & Johnson (not recommended by pediatricians for newborn’s delicate skin).
- Car Seat
- Wallet: Make sure to have your drivers license, insurance cards, etc.
- List of People to Call
- Camera & Charger
- iPad & Charger
- Docking Station: Nice to have music during labor so it’s not super quiet.
- DVDs, Magazines, Journal, etc.
- Snacks and Bottled Water: Gatorade, Trail Mix, Pita Chips, Goldfish, etc.
- Extra Duffel Bag: For raiding the hospital cart!
- Nurse Treats: To thank your nurses for taking care of you!
For our nurse treats I tied “Thank you for helping with our little peanut” tags on peanut M&Ms. If you have extra time to spare before going into labor to make “thank you gifts,” I highly recommend it! All of my nurse friends have told me how much it means to them to be appreciated…plus it automatically makes you one of their favorite patients, right?
Am I missing anything? What were some of the most useful items you packed for the hospital?