After having two babies of my own, I wanted to impart some advice and knowledge to my 1st-time moms and newborn clients. When I was about 35 weeks pregnant with my last child, I realized I needed to make my hospital go-bag. Even though I had made one before, it had already become a distant memory. However, there were a few things that stuck out as being necessary. I put together a list of things we forgot the 1st time and things we didn’t think we would need at a hospital but apparently did! So here is my Hospital Bag Checklist, a list of things to bring with you to the hospital and why:
Hospital Bag Checklist
Insurance Info – At our hospital we pre-register but I definitely don’t want to be getting the entire hospital bill for this baby just in case! 🙂
Robe/PJ’s/Nightgowns – I recommend bringing a dress like one as well as pants. The reason being is during labor, you’re going to want something open and comfortable, but afterward in recovery, I did not want that same freedom. Lol!
Nursing bra – For obvious reasons, once that baby is here.
Pumping Bra – I ended up buying a bra to wear while pumping to be hands-free and pump both sides at one time. It’s awesome and worth every penny. You’ll want to try it out when in the hospital.
Breast pump and bottles and tubes – They usually provide some in the hospital but if you are fortunate enough to have your health insurance cover a breast pump, you’ll want to figure out how to use it and if it works correctly while you are there. (Also, mine ended up not working well so I had to get a new one and use the hospital’s pump in the meantime. That was definitely something I was glad I found out at the hospital instead of at home.)
Breast vaseline stuff (Lanolin) – Believe me.
Chapstick – If you don’t have it, you’ll want it.
Lollipops – Yes, this one is just for you too. Since you aren’t allowed to have anything to eat when in labor, a little bit of candy and sugar can be a welcome relief.
Socks with grippers on the bottom – For roaming the hospital room and halls.
For You and Your Partner/Family
Toiletries and personal items – hairbrush, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, face wash, makeup (as if), shampoo, conditioner, lotion, contact lens case and solution. (Remember, travel-sized products are your friends!) Don’t forget to bring toiletries for anyone who will be staying in the hospital with you.
Pen and paper – During contractions, this was a great distraction for me. It was also helpful for my husband to make to-do or remember-to-get lists when we got home.
Water bottle with straw – I have a few camelbak water bottles that have straws. They make it super easy to drink a lot of water while in labor, no matter what position you are in. Again, bring one for each person in the hospital with you.
Cell phones/charger – Or else you will regret it. 🙂
Camera/charger/card – Same.
Pillow and Blanket – This one was a special request by my husband. You would think the hospital would give your husband a place to sleep but really it’s something less comfortable than a college futon. Plus, there were no pillows or blankets. So bring your own just in case or watch your husband shiver and complain through the night.
Ipad – Mostly for entertainment value but I used it for work too.
Snacks – For Labor and for afterwards especially if you have a very specific diet but it helps regardless. Plus, it keeps the husband less grumpy too!
Gifts for older siblings – If you have another child, you might want to have a little gift to make them feel special as well.
Medications – Any of the medications that you and your partner will need for a few days, including your prenatal meds.
Going home clothes – Don’t forget to pack clothes for you, your partner and for baby!
Car seat and base – To get that baby home of course! Have the base checked out as well, while you are at the hospital.
Baby blanket – Especially for winter babies! I am in Colorado of course.
Diapers/Wipes – Bring just a few. They give you some at the hospital, but you don’t want to be waiting for a nurse to bring you more if you accidentally run out in the middle of the night.
Baby Book – If you got a Baby Book that has a spot for hands and feet and any other information about birth, you’ll want to bring it. Have the staff help you get the prints and write down all the info right away.
Moms, is there anything you would add to this hospital bag checklist? Any other advice you would give for first time moms heading into labor?