What I am bringing in my hospital bag as a first time mama.
UPDATE: 11 days postpartum and updated what we actually needed and used in bold below.
I am almost to “term” with this baby boy (WHAT!) and the hospital bag is packed. I wanted to share what I am bringing and some helpful tips I got from my community. OBVIOUSLY, I am overpacking here. I am preparing for a few scenerios and generally, I rather have too much than too little. Please don’t judge me for taking the “moving in” to the hospital approach.. lol. It gives me comfort to know I have what I need. Even if that is too much.
They say at my hospital prepare for a 2-3 day stay (especially if you get induced) and it can be longer if you end up having a C-section. I know some places they keep you for literally 1 day, but I am preparing to be around for a few.
I am also basing this on what I know my hospital provides in the L&D unit, if you are unsure what is provided (example, with postpartum stuff), ask your doctor. Some hospitals do more than others.
Also, at the bottom of this blog post, you will see a hospital bag checklist graphic that I made. You can screenshot that too!
- Nursing friendly PJs – I got this set from target in 2 colors. It will also be great for postpartum life around the house. I see myself wearing these or my gown most of the time. I actually stayed in the Frida Mom hospital gown (so cozy) for 2 days and then got into the target gown PJs for the rest. I only needed one more for my stay.
- Travel Home Outfit – I am bringing baggy sweats, a nursing tank and a cute “mama” sweatshirt I got from old navy. I def wore this home.
- Robe – I am bringing my lightweight robe to wear after a shower and to cover up when wearing the diapers they give you. I did not use.
- Cozy Socks + Barre Socks – just in case you don’t like the hospital socks. I ended up using their socks, but can see how people would prefer their own.
- Slippers + Flip Flops for showering. 100 percent need shower shoes. Did not wear slippers at all because of c section I was not walking around.
- Bras – comfortable nursing / pumping bra (finally found one I love from Target) and comfortable sleeping bra. I have loved the Harper Wilde Bliss Bras my entire pregnancy. You can also nurse in the HW bras.
- Compression socks – This is incase you swell up. I NEEDED these! I was so swollen from all the liquids.
- Masks – quality and comfortable masks for being in the hospital. Every hospital has a different mask policy. They have tons fo masks, but I preferred the KN95 ones we brought.
- Postpartum things – from I understand the hospital gives you most things (diapers, underwear, pads, dermaplast, witch hazel pads, nipple cream, peri bottles etc). I got the Frida Postpartum kit and I am leaving most of it at home for that reason. What I am bringing is: nipple cream, underwear (I hear it was more comfy), my own peri bottle (from Frida kit – I hear the shape is better). Everything else, I am relying on the hospital for. I did not use any of this because they gave it all to us there – disposable underwear, pads etc. They did give me a belly band in the hospital for my C section. When I got home I got the Frida Mom C section underwear (high waisted) and LOTS of maxi pads from CVS.
- For feeding – I am leaving my pump / bottles / formula at home because they provide everything there. Some people bring their own formula if they have a specific brand they want.
- Cosmetics – basic skincare (cleanser, moisturizer, oil), toothbrush / toothpaste / floss, travel size shower essentials if you do not want to use the hospitals, brush / scrunchies, lipbalm, deodorant, medication and postnatal (or prenatal) vitamins. Yup – used my cosmetics and so happy I had my home stuff. They did not provide shower stuff at the hospital.
- Mints or sucking candies – for when you cannot eat. Didn’t use!
- Car Seat + Base – this will be ready to go in the car. We wont bring in the car seat until we are ready to leave.
- Swaddle Blankets – I am bringing these just for extra comfort in case or if we want some specific styles for photos. I know the hospital provides this. I only needed one and we used it for newborn pics in the hospital.
- Newborn hat and mittens – same as above. I want my own options. Didn’t use. They gave us hats.
- Coming home outfit – I picked 2 outfits (just in case). These are also for photographs too. We are likely going to do a little new born shoot in the hospital if everything goes well. I used one outfit for newborn photos and one for his coming home.
- Basic White Onesies – just in case! I know everyone says baby stays in a diaper and blanket. Did not use.
- Burp cloths – I packed 2 I know I like. Did not use.
- Cozy baby blanket – for snuggles and when we leave it may be cold out. Used!
- Portable Sound machine – for when baby is sleeping in the room with you this helps emulate the sounds of womb. USED! Loved having this.
FOR DAD / PARTNER:
- Pajamas and comfortable clothing
- Underwear, socks
- Cosmetics: toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, face wash (anything they need for overnight)
- Slippers and flip flops
- Robe – if they are feeling like they need to be as comfy as you!
- Computer / ear phones – anything for entertainment
- Pillows, Pillow Cases and blanket – I hear hospital pillows are crappy, so we want to bring our own with cases to be the most comfortable during our stay. Same with a blanket. We can bring a cozy one and leave in the car to see if we want to go and use it. Can’t hurt to make your space more comfortable, especially if you are waiting for an induction or something like that where you will have lots of time. THIS WAS HUGE. HAVING MY OWN PILLOW WAS A GAME CHANGER. We didn’t bring our own blanket, but I had a baby blanket i used with Miles.
- Towels / Face Cloths – we are bringing our lightweight towel set. Word on the street the towels are super small and uncomfy at the hospital so bringing our own. YUP, our own towels were great for our shower.
- Phone chargers (with long cord), earphones, ipad, computer – for entertainment. YES!
- Folder with your birthing plan docs, any medical history documents, vaccine cards, IDs and insurance information. Also handy to have the folder for any documents they give you. YUP – they give you a ton of docs. Great to have it all together.
- Tripod – for taking photos easily. Did not use.
- Bluetooth speaker – yes we are planning on jamming out to some good tunes during this process. YES! as I was progressing we played relaxing, calming music. And during pushing we played upbeat (Kygo) music. It was great for room vibes and the staff loved it too.
- Extra bag for stuff they give you at the hospital and a laundry bag. YES!
- SNACKSSSS!!!!!!!!! and a water bottle with a straw. We brought way too many snacks. I couldn’t eat for a lot of my labor so I didn’t really use it. Good to have though!
- Night light – I am actually bringing my mini ring light for this for nighttime feeds. Apparently hospital lights can be super harsh and at 3am I don’t want that. We used this!
- Portable Fan – apparently super clutch for labor! YES YES YES!!!!!!!!! During contractions this was so soothing.
- Gift for nursing staff – I am going to put together a little gift basket of snacks and such for the staff. No necessary, but apparently goes a long way. They work so hard!! Since we were early by three weeks we did not have a chance to put this together, but would for sure recommend.
Hope that helped! I can come back and edit this post-birth to see what was helpful and what was overkill. Here we go!