The closer you get to your due date the more people always ask, “Is your bag packed?” What does that even mean? How should your bag be packed? What do you really need to bring with you to the hospital? When should your bag be packed?
If you are asking yourself any of those questions, you have come to the right place!
I suggest having your bag packed by the time you are 36weeks. You never know when you will go into labor and the last thing you want to do when your contractions start or your water breaks is to pack your hospital bag!
Here is a list of items that I recommend packing in your hospital bag:
- Your ID. And a birth plan (if you have any special requests). I didn’t have a birth plan. I just went with the flow of things and it worked out for me.
- Comfortable and loose fitting clothes. These are for after you give birth to make yourself feel better and to get you out of those hospital gowns. If you plan on breastfeeding it is also nice to have clothes that make it easier for you to feed your baby, instead of pulling down a whole gown.
- Nursing bra, if you plan on nursing.
- Nipple lotion. Your boobs are going to be going through a lot! Especially for new moms trying to get the hang of nursing. This was a must have for me.
- Nursing pads. I only brought a few because your milk doesn’t come in right away but it was nice to have that extra protection to keep your breastmilk from leaking onto your clothes.
- Comfy socks! Or slippers. Whichever you feel better in walking around that hospital room.
- An outfit for you to wear home. A maxi dress or even sweat pants will be perfect.
- Toiletries. Do not forget these. You will be delivering a baby and will definitely want to take a shower afterwards! Whatever items are in your normal shower routine bring them. If you wear make up, bring it. You will want to make yourself feel refreshed and like yourself again so bring the items that will help you do that. I, myself brought shampoo, conditioner, body soap, deodorant, face wash, face lotion, toothbrush, toothpaste, chapstick, hair brush, hair ties and make up.
- Phone & charger. Lets be real, you’re having a baby and you are going to be sending pictures to all of your loved ones of your little bundle of joy. Make sure your charger is packed because those batteries drain fast! (Plus, cruising through social media helped me pass some time during labor!)
- Baby clothes! Make sure you bring about 2-3 outfits because they will get them dirty! Also, bringing newborn and 3mo sizes are a good idea. Both of my babies were big! They came out wearing 3mo clothing.
- Baby pajamas.
- Blanket. A swaddle blanket, or whichever one you prefer for your little one to use.
- Burp cloths. I recommend using cloth diapers because they absorb so much better!
- Nail clippers or mittens. Their nails are sharp and they will be reaching around touching everything so you’ll need to protect their face from getting scratched up.
- Car seat. Make sure it is installed and ready to go before you go into labor! Being prepared for baby as much as possible makes everything a lot easier once they come.
- If it is winter, bring a car seat cover.
- Extra clothes. Especially, comfortable ones to sleep in.
- Snacks. Snacks. And more snacks. My husband was starving during my labor and when we were hanging around the hospital room. Plus, they help keep him from getting so cranky (cue the snickers bar commercials haha)
- Pillow. Yes the hospital provides some but nothing can replace your own!
- Phone & charger.
- Toiletries, if they plan on staying with you the whole time. My husband went home to get a shower the following day when I had visitors keeping me company so he didn’t bring anything except his deodorant and toothbrush.
These items the hospital did provide for me but it was also nice having my own.
- My own pads. The ones they provide are pretty much adult diapers and having your own heavy duty ones, especially for when you go home, are a lot more comfortable.
- Underwear. Big underwear. Granny panty style underwear. You will be wearing adult diapers/giant pads make sure your underwear can support all of that! Plus, the ones the hospital provides are so uncomfortable.
Here is a list of items that my hospital provided for me that I did not have to worry about. Please check with your hospital if they provide all of these items for you or not.
- Diapers. They had newborn and size 1.
- Numbing spray. (Your lady parts will thank you for this!)
- Ice pack for your lady parts. (This was a life saver for me, especially because I needed stitches)
- Squirt bottle. Going to the bathroom will be hard for a little while. Wiping will hurt, a lot. Having a squirt bottle to clean yourself up is great.
- Nipple shield. Getting the hang of breastfeeding is more complicated than you would think. Having a nipple shield allowed me to figure out the best way to feed my boys.
Lastly, make sure you are as mentally prepared as possible. For new moms you’re going into an “unknown” situation but trust me it will all work out. Your doctor, nurses or midwife have been through this many times and will be doing everything they can to make your delivery as smooth as possible. You can do it, mama!