What should I bring to the hospital?
The BIG question...what should I bring to the hospital???? Every birthing person seems to pack, unpack and repack their bag over and over. It seems that it never quite feels right whether its the first, second or fifth baby! In this blog I am going to break down a minimally packed hospital bag. These are the things I highly recommend as both a parent who has given birth in hospital and a Doula who has attended plenty of births!
The Minimalist Hospital Bag:
- Printed Birth Plan (if you have one) - you have likely already discussed your plan with your caregiver, but having one handy for nurses or a replacement doctor can be useful.
- Comfortable Clothing - this is the full deal people...socks (2), underwear (2-3), comfortable nursing bra, bottoms and a top. I only have one pair of bottoms and a top because worse comes to worse you can wear the clothes you arrived in, but bring more if you prefer.
- Lip Balm - your lips can and likely will get dry during labor.
- Post-partum Pads - the amount of pads you choose to bring really depends on how long you expect to stay and if you are comfortable wearing the hospital provided pads or not.
- Nursing Pads - ask your care provider if your chosen hospital provides nursing pads, if they don't you may want to bring just a handful (3-4). It is likely that you won't have too much leakage in the first few days.
- Nipple Cream - there are many different kinds with varying ingredients, pick one that suits your preferences and have it before you go into labor.
- Basic toiletries - toothbrush, toothpaste, hair brush and elastics. If you think you will want to shower before going home bring along your shower essentials too.
- Chargers - phone, camera or whatever other electronics you plan to bring.
- Snacks - bring a few snacks for yourself, granola bars or fresh fruit/veg that will stay good in your bag for a few days
- Newborn Outfits - it is best for your baby to remain naked skin-skin as much as possible in the first days. This means you will really only need two outfits, one for going home and the other as a backup.
- Baby blanket - for the drive home you may want a small blanket on your baby if the weather is chilly.