What to Bring to the Hospital
Time to pack your bags, you’re having a baby!! You are probably about 4-6 weeks away from your due date and meeting your sweet baby, and it is time to pack your hospital bag. This seems to be one of the most exciting yet daunting tasks because you want to make sure you have every single thing you need for your hospital stay. This has become especially important during the recent outbreak of COVID-19 because hospitals are not allowing visitors to come to the hospital before and after the baby is born, and once you are checked in, your spouse/partner is not able to leave for the duration of your stay either. So those quick trips home to grab something you forgot or having family bring you that long-awaited meal has come to a screeching halt. But no worries, we’ve put together a list of some essentials items that you will need during this exciting time so that you won’t miss a thing. If you’re reading this after the pandemic regulations have eased up, then luckily for you, you don’t have to bring your whole house along!
Things For Mom:
- You will want to make sure you have your driver’s license and insurance card for registration, and any other paperwork you may need handy.
- Most parents are in the hospital for 1-2 nights depending on when the baby is born, and how the delivery goes, so we recommend bringing 2 comfortable pairs of nursing-friendly pajamas/loungewear. Nightgowns are one of the best choices, but if you would rather a set, we suggest something stretchy and flowy so you can move freely. You will also want to bring a comfortable “coming home” outfit for when you are discharged from the hospital.
- Another essential is your nursing supplies. You will want to bring a comfortable nursing bra, nursing pads, and nipple cream for those early stages. You may not need the cream and pads just yet, but it is definitely something you don’t want to be without if needed.
- One of the less talked about items is maternity underwear and adult diapers. The hospital will provide you with some during your stay, but if you want to bring your own preferred brand, this is good to keep in mind!
- When that glorious moment arrives and you get to shower after giving birth and laboring for hours, you will want to be sure you have all of the toiletries you need. Some of these items are shampoo, conditioner, body wash, dry shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, ponytails, bobby pins, lotion, deodorant, contact lens solution, and any makeup you may want for your first family pictures.
- You’ll also want to bring your prenatal vitamins so you can continue to take them after the baby is here.
- Although hospitals are cleaned thoroughly, you will want to bring a pair of slippers, some socks, and some flip flops for the shower as well, just to ensure you are staying germ-free.
- Some items that may also make your stay feel more comfortable and at home are things like your pillow, your favorite blanket, a comfy robe (which will come in handy for pictures with baby), a small sound machine to mask hospital noise, and your own towel since the hospital ones are usually small and scratchy.
- Although you and your spouse/partner will probably be soaking in every minute with your sweet new babe and seizing every opportunity to squeeze in a nap, you may still want to bring a laptop and charger if you want to watch your favorite Netflix show while you’re awake.
- One of the biggest essentials is an extra-long cell phone charger! A long charger will allow you to plug in your phone and reach it from your bed too. You will be sending pictures and videos to all your friends and family, and doing Facetime with everyone as well, so you will want to be sure to keep your phone alive while you’re there.
- Another good thing to bring is your favorite tumbler for water. Some hospitals will provide you with one, but if not, you’ll want to have one just in case so that you can be sure you are staying hydrated once the baby is here.
- A new and trending item you may want to take along is a small letterboard. People are using this to put next to the baby to take announcement pictures that have their name and their birth info on it as well.
- Lastly, since you are only allowed one guest during this time, you will have to rely on each other and the hospital staff to snap some pictures of this major moment in your life. So you will want to bring a camera (or your phone) and a tripod to set up if you want to get creative for those first newborn pictures. Polaroid cameras are fun too!
Things for Dad:
- Just like mom, dad will need several outfits too. You will want to have outfits for him to wear at night, and comfortable clothes to wear during the day. Be sure to bring a coming home outfit for him too!
- Essential toiletries are obviously important; shampoo, soap, deodorant, toothbrush, and toothpaste, and any other specific items they may use.
- Since dad usually sleeps on the couch, some people like to bring a set of sheets and a pillow and blanket just to make the couch more comfortable at night.
- He will need a pair of slippers or sandals to lounge around in as well.
- It is important that he has his own charger too for when he wants to snap some pictures or stay in touch with friends and family pre/post-delivery.
- Snacks, snacks, and more snacks!! You will want to bring enough snacks for the both of you. Although hospital cafeterias will deliver food, you will want to have your own stash on hand too. Some people all suggest bringing a small cooler to keep a sandwich or two in, and some of your favorite drinks. This especially comes into play with the new COVID-19 regulations that prevent food from being delivered, and from dad running out to get snacks.
Things for Baby:
- You can pack all of the things for your baby in their diaper bag and bring that along.
- The hospital will provide diapers and wipes during your stay, but it doesn’t hurt to bring some along in the diaper bag for the drive home.
- You’ll want to bring 2 outfits. One can be used for those sweet announcement pictures, and the other can be a nice going home outfit. Don’t forget hats or bows as well!
- Swaddle blankets will be great as well. Since the hospital gives you a baby blanket, you really just need to bring one or two for pictures or for your preference.
- You can bring along a couple of your favorite Binky Box pacifiers to begin testing out which paci your baby will love most!
- A boppy pillow will also be a lifesaver to bring along for learning to breastfeed. This will help prop the baby up and keep you both comfortable.
- Last but not least, you will want to make sure the car seat base is installed, and that you have the car seat with you to bring the baby home!
Another great trend we have seen a lot of people doing is creating nurse goodie baskets for their nighttime and daytime nurses. Your nurses work so hard and are true life-savers during this huge moment in your life. This has especially become more popular during the pandemic because your nurses become your family during your time at the hospital when you can’t have family and friends visiting. These are perfect for dropping off at the nurse stations when you arrive so they have some treats to look forward to during their long hours. Some great things to put in the baskets are things like chocolates, protein bars, Starbucks coffee cans, trail mix, gum/mints, and any other yummy single serve treats. You may also want to include a sweet note to everyone in the basket as well!
This is such a special time for you and your family, and we hope this list of items helps you to feel at peace and prepared for your baby’s birth. Although it may seem like a lot, you’ll feel comfort in knowing that it is there if you need it. We hope your hospital and birth experience is amazing and all you dream for it to be, and we know you are counting down the days until you get to meet your sweet little one. In the meantime, have fun packing, and savor these last moments together!
The Binky Babes