Hospital Bag Checklist – What You Need When You’re Having A Baby
So, the day is almost here…
You get to head to the hospital to bring that sweet, precious baby into the world, and you need to know what exactly to bring. You never know exactly how long you might be there or what all you will need.
You could be like Libby and get there 30 minutes before the baby comes, or like me, where you labor at the hospital for a whole day before sweet baby girl got delivered. You just never know, so pack a few extra things without going crazy.
There are so many things you COULD bring to the hospital, but many of them are probably unnecessary. There are things that I brought the first time around that didn’t end up getting used (i.e. my fancy camera), and thankfully, you really don’t need that much since the hospital provides many things. I’m literally packing for baby boy’s delivery as I write this.
Try to get your bag packed around 35-37 weeks.
Hospital Bag Checklist
Bring a few copies to give to your nurses and to the doctor.
ID & other documents:
Photo ID, insurance card, and any hospital forms you may need.
- Comfy clothes – Yoga pants are great. After your delivery, loose clothing will be your friend with your new squishy belly. If you’re planning to breastfeed, a nursing tank and nursing-friendly clothes will also be great companions.
- Birthing gown – For the first time around, I just used a black, short cotton dress.
- Bathing suit – If you plan on laboring in the tub or shower.
- Sports bra and nursing bra – Sports bras work great during labor, and if you’re planning on nursing, you’ll definitely want to bring a comfy nursing bra. These are some of my favorites.
- One clean outfit to leave in.
- Socks and/or slippers
- Sweatshirt or warm long-sleeved shirt.
- Hair ties
- Nursing tank
- Loose shirts for easy accessibility
- Nursing bra
- Nipple cream – Make your own or you find some natural nipple cream here.
- Nursing pads
Personal care items (I’m into natural things if you didn’t know…):
- Natural soap, shampoo, conditioner.
- Toothbrush, toothpaste, comb, makeup, hair products, deodorant, lip balm, etc. (Although doing my hair and makeup were last on my list after having a baby.)
- Glasses and contacts/contact solution
Personal items from home: things that make you comfortable like blankets, pillows, etc.
- Phone charger
- Camera – You can also just use the one on your phone, but if you want to get better photos, bring along your camera. Again, I didn’t use mine first time around, because I had a hard time getting out of bed. Hoping this time will be a little easier.
- Snacks – For yourself and your partner. I wish I would’ve brought more snacks for myself, because my hospital wouldn’t let me eat in labor, and I was in labor for 46 hours the first time around. Thankfully, my dad kept sneaking me food.
- I brought a dad bag for my husband, which he greatly appreciated. It included granola bars, trail mix, chips, drinks (including a celebratory cream soda – his favorite).
Relaxation techniques – here are a few things you can think about bringing to help you relax.
- Essential oils like lavender are a great way to help you relax (see below)
- Tennis balls and pool noodles (to rub on your back)
- Your own pillow
- Birthing ball (hospitals usually have them, though)
- Heating pads or microwaveable bags
- Encouraging notes can be helpful
Essentail oils: bring a diffuser, inhaler stick, or you can put a few drops of essential oil on a cloth to smell while laboring.
I use essential oils from Plant Therapy. You can find them on their site PlantTherapy.com or on Amazon
- Clary Sage can be used ONLY during active labor to help keep strong contractions
- Lavender or chamomile for relaxation
- Energizing oils like lemon, orange, and grapefruit.
Postpartum care items:
The hospital should supply many of these (although, they will probably not be natural), but if you are having a homebirth, then you may need to supply them yourself.
- Large pads or those fancy, padded undies
- Witch Hazel pads (like this one)
- Natural numbing spray (like this one)
- Peri bottle
What To Pack For Baby
- Baby’s carseat needs to be installed before you leave the hospital to make sure you’ve already done this well. One less thing to worry about.
- A few onesies and pants – If everything goes smoothly, you will probably only need a few outfits. Plus, since you’ll be doing lots of skin to skin time, baby doesn’t need too much clothing.
- Swaddling blanket – These Tula swaddling blankets are my absolute favorite, but the hospital has them on hand also.
- Diapers – The hospital will have these, but if you want to avoid the regular diapers bring cloth or non-toxic ones like these.
- Baby wipes – Again, the hospital will have the standard version of these, but if you’re into that natural thing, bring natural ones- WaterWipes are my favorite.
- Breastfeeding pillow
Check out the Ultimate Natural Baby Registry Here!
What else did you bring that you found really helpful? We would love to hear.
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What a complete list. I wonder if I would have been so well prepared on my baby’s arrival.
Amy, great post. Having a spare pair of glasses in your bag is smart because it’ll be the last thing on your mind on your way to the hospital. Have a magnificent 2018.