Given the fact I love lists, naturally I had a detailed one ready for the hospital prior to having my girls. My list might be a little over the top given my “list issues”, however at least you know you have everything covered!
It’s much easier to be prepared beforehand, so pack what you can in advance and then leave the list next to your bag so once you are in labour you can quickly finish it off!
There are some items I have included that I am honestly going to say sound like a good idea before going into labour, but once I was there they were not going to help me at all. As a side note, when I was leaving hospital I really wasn’t concerned with what I was wearing, but – best to be prepared I say.
Here is a list to help you decide what to pack in your hospital bag. Click on the link at the end of the post for a printable list without my comments!
What to Pack for Hospital When Having a Baby
It is best to check with the hospital as to what they provide and what you can bring. Many hospitals may supply a birthing ball and iPod dock (for music) or CD player so this will save you bringing one. They also may be limited on space so don’t pack the earth – also be careful of valuables.
I found it useful to pack the items for labour in a smaller bag within your hospital bag, so you can easily find what you are looking for.
- Comfortable outfit, such as a loose dress – that you don’t mind if you don’t wear it again!
- Birth plan
- Purse – with change
- Snacks – something to give you energy such as muesli bars (make your own if possible!)
- Camera and charger
- Mobile phone and charger
- Toiletries – keep it simple – hair tie and lip gloss or whatever your “favourite” beauty products are in case you need some comfort!
- Birth aids – of your choosing, such as music, essential oils, massage oils, spray bottle, flannel, birthing ball, heat pack, tens machine, tennis balls (for massage)
- Entertainment – an item I definitely didn’t need…but bring a book or magazines in case you have a long labour!
For your partner
- Board shorts if you think you may want to shower or for a water birth
- Mobile phone – ensure you have a list of people ready for sending the birth announcement to (make sure this includes any contacts you may have your partner doesn’t!)
- Any medications
- Toiletries – such as deodorant, razor
- Change of clothes
For yourself in hospital
- Any medications you are on
- Breastfeeding multivitamins
- Nipple Cream
- Breast pads
- Glasses or contacts
- Toiletries – whatever you generally use. You won’t have much time for pampering yourself, so choose things that you know will help “perk you up” such as a favourite lip gloss or moisturiser
- Tops with easy access for breastfeeding, preferably loose fitting (you won’t be back to your pre baby size straight away so make sure they are a little bigger!)
- Pants – hospitals are notoriously cold!
- Old underpants or purchase some cheap new ones (you may not be using them again!)
- Maternity pads – plenty as you will need more than you think
- Nursing bras – bring a few
- Dressing gown
- Slippers or thongs
- Snacks – breastfeeding is hungry work!
- Outfit to go home in
- Your own pillow – if you are fussy about your pillow you definitively want to take your own!
- Your favourite tea – again depends on your feelings towards hot beverages! If you have a favourite which again could help pick you up, bring some!
- An eye mask – for the bright lights of hospital!
- Plastic bags for dirty clothes
The list for baby depends largely on what the hospital will provide, so check that out prior to your arrival.
- Ensure your car seat is installed!
- Nappies, wipes and nappy bags
- An outfit for coming home – if you are like me this will include a headband and gorgeous (albeit pointless) shoes
- Wraps or blankets
- Muslin cloths or other items for wiping up messes!
If you already have a baby or other children, don’t forget you may need to pack a little bag for them:
For other children:
- Routine – write out a copy of their routine to make it easier for their caregiver
- Day clothes
- A favourite toy – perhaps a little backpack with some of their favourite things
This list is by no means exhaustive and of course is a very personal thing…what are your “essential” items for hospital? I would love to update the list with some of your suggestions.
Download printable version here!!