As a first-time mom, I’m definitely no expert when it comes to baby stuff, BUT I’d like to think I can make some solid suggestions. After hanging out with one of my pregnant besties, I realized I never blogged about packing a hospital bag. I remember reading a million different variations of what to bring and feeling V overwhelmed. Below are my personal recommendations, in no particular order of importance, based on my experience. The hospital provides you with a lot of the necessities, so no need to go overboard.
- Soft maternity bra – I didn’t wear a bra while I was in the hospital, but totally should have. If you’re breastfeeding, you’ll be leaking A LOT. Not having to trade out your hospital robe every time it happens will be a life-saver. And don’t get one that has snaps you have to mess with just yet — breastfeeding is hard enough. I love this one.
- Nipple pads – Speaking of leaking, the bra won’t do you any good unless you have nursing pads. I found this set of reusable pads that I really like. Bring all of them!
- Nipple cream – Yep. The hospital is where raw nipples are born. Make sure you’ve got some Lanolin to ease the pain.
- Nursing pillow – I remember not feeling confident at all about how to use mine before getting a run-down from the nurse. Make sure you bring one to get a quick lesson.
- Socks – Hospitals are cold and the floors are colder. You’ll be glad you have a couple pairs.
- Chapstick – With A/C running at all times, the air gets dry. And then so do your lips.
- Lotion – I repeat — dry air.
- Rubber flip flops – I don’t care how many cleaning products they use, “shower shoes” are necessary.
- Chargers – Phone, tablet, camera — whatever you’re bringing, don’t forget the chargers.
- Headphones – When your partner is sleeping (rude, I know) and you feel like being considerate, these will come in handy.
- Book – I didn’t think I’d read at all, but you’d be surprised at how much waiting around you’ll do. Whether you’re waiting to get admitted, waiting to be checked into your room, or waiting for your contractions to start, you’ll be glad you have something to occupy your time.
- Swaddle blanket – If you want something cute for photos, one or two of these will be good to have. You never know what weirdly patterned blankets the hospital will provide.
- Onesies – Your baby will need some going-home clothes. Bring a couple different sizes just in case (and then don’t be surprised if nothing fits).
- Comfy outfit for going home – I highly recommend loose-fitting BLACK bottoms that you don’t mind messing up a bit. Remember, you’ll be leaking like it’s your freaking job.
- Makeup/Shampoo & conditioner/Body wash/Deodorant/Toothbrush/Toothpaste – Duh.
- Dry shampoo – In between learning how to keep a human alive and figuring out where the pain all over your body is coming from, this will be your best friend. Plus, who doesn’t want a little extra volume when rolling (literally in your wheelchair) out of the hospital?
- Noise machine – We sleep with our Dohm every night, so having it in the hospital was comforting and made for better naps. I say naps because you’ll be up every hour or two —might as well make them the best naps possible.
- Copies of birth plan – Printing them out doesn’t mean anyone will actually read them, but it’s good to have something to go over with your nurses.
- Healthy snacks – Hospital food is hospital food, so you’ll be stoked to have some bars, nuts, dried fruit, etc. in your bag.
p.s. I wouldn’t bother buying an expensive maternity robe like so many people recommend. I wore the super sexy ones (see photo) provided by the hospital because a) they tie in the back for easy bathroom trips, b) they snap at the shoulders for nursing, and c) you won’t have to worry about how messed up they get with all of your bodily fluids. Mmm. Save the $75 and buy one for chillin’ at home. At least then it’ll only get covered in spit-up and diaper mystery stains.
p.p.s. Don’t forget to install your base and look up how to put your baby in the carseat. We learned the hard way that the hospital staff isn’t allowed to confirm if you’ve secured him or her correctly. YouTube is your friend! You’ll already be freaked out enough as is (hello, they let you leave with a tiny human!) —no need to add any unnecessary stress on yourself or your partner.
And FYI! I’m a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.