Packing my hospital bag was an exciting moment for me because it meant my baby would be here soon. It was also a relief because I finally felt prepared if baby decided to make an early appearance. Being a mom of two my hospital bag differed greatly the second time around because I knew what items I needed. So here is what you ACTUALLY need in your hospital bag:
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- Robe – the hospital will have a robe for you to use over your gown but they are not the most comfortable so I preferred to use my own. It kept me warm and was convenient for nursing and covering up when I had visitors. See what I used here.
- Non-slip socks – the hospital also provides non-slip socks but again it’s much more comfortable to bring your own such as these.
- Slippers – you will want to bring slippers that are easy to slide on and off with your socks. I walked around as much as I could during labor in hopes I would progress faster so I was taking my slippers on and off quite frequently. These worked great.
- Nursing Bra – hands down one of the best items I purchased. Even if you do not plan on breastfeeding or it doesn’t work out a nursing bra is so comfortable and makes life so much easier. I used these for sleeping and these during the day.
- Nursing Pajamas – I stayed in my gown and robe for awhile after delivery but eventually switched into nursing pajamas for even more added comfort. I’ve been using these and will wear them even when I am no longer nursing.
- Water Bottle – breastfeeding requires lots of fluids and you’ll want water both before and after delivery. I liked using my own water bottle for the convenience of being able to set it anywhere without it spilling. Plus it is great to have for when you are home with baby. This one works great!
- Snacks – I screwed this one up the first time and was so hungry after delivery and during those middle of the night feedings. Plus hospital food isn’t the greatest. I packed trail mix, gold fish, slim jims, gummy bears, sweet tarts, chips and cookies. Not the healthiest but these were easy for a quick snack between meals.
- Extra Bag – bring an extra bag to put all the items you will take home from the hospital such as pads, diapers, mesh underwear etc. Don’t be shy and take as much as you need. I brought a couple plastic bags from the grocery store.
- Going home outfit – you definitely will not be looking 9 months pregnant anymore but you will likely not be able to fit into your pre-pregnancy jeans yet so bring some loose fitting clothes that are comfortable. I wore my nursing pajamas home because they are that comfortable and I literally lived in these for the first week.
- Phone Charger – don’t forget this as you will want to take many pictures and update family and friends! I also recommend a portable charging block, like this, since there likely will not be an outlet close to the bed.
- Nipple Cream – breastfeeding takes a toll on your nipples. They will hurt, crack and/or bleed for the first week or two so a nipple cream is a must. I used this for both my babies.
- Nursing Pillow – I did not bring one for my first baby and so wish I had. The first few days breastfeeding can be difficult so make your life easier and bring your nursing pillow. I did for my second and it was so nice having it. I used this one.
- Toiletries – do yourself a favor and purchase travel size items such as shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, tooth brush, deodorant, moisturizer, lotion, chap stick, etc. I brought my full size products for my first and the entire last month of my pregnancy I worried about forgetting to put them in my bag so for my second I bought travel size and did not have to worry after that.
- Brush, Hair ties, headbands, etc. – a brush, hair ties and a headband are also essential.
- Sweatshirt & sweatpants – hospitals are cold and dad should be comfortable too!
- 2 outfits – you’ll likely be in the hospital for two nights so you’ll need two outfits for dad
- Slippers – comfortable shoes are also a must.
- Snacks – my husband is a very picky eater so I made sure to pack some snacks that he would like as well. Plus hospital food is not covered for dad.
- Toiletries – pretty much the same list as mom: toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, deodorant, etc.
What to pack in your Hospital Bag
- Swaddles – bring your own swaddle or two for some adorable pictures and to keep your little bundle nice and warm. I absolutely love the set I got from here. I also brought this to make swaddling easier. My babies could break out of anything.
- Hat and/or Bow – the hospital will provide one but my second time around I got these adorable hats. My swaddle also came with a matching bow which made for a cute picture!
- White Noise Machine – it can get really quiet in the middle of the night so having a white noise machine can help soothe your baby and keep them sleeping. I love this one and it is so cute too.
- Going Home Outfit – my suggestion for this one is choose something practical like this newborn sleeper.
- Car seat – last but not least don’t forget the car seat because you cannot bring your baby home without one! Additionally, make sure you have the base installed and checked by a professional. I decided on this one for my second. It is one of the lightest car seats on the market, fabric is easy to remove to wash, is super comfortable for baby and I love the design as well.
These are the items that you actually need in your hospital bag. You really do not need much and if you still do not feel prepared you can call your hospital to find out exactly what they will provide.