I was shopping at the mall by myself and I thought I was going into labor. I was freaking out wondering if I could make it out of the mall. I wasn’t ready. It wasn’t time. I hadn’t packed my hospital bag yet. Thankfully, my first child was not born outside The Cheesecake Factory on a mall bench.
As soon as I got home I decided I was going to pack my bag for the hospital.
Of course never having had a baby before, I packed too much of some things and totally forgot to pack others. I also packed thinking I was having a vaginal birth. I’ve updated this guide and checklist. Also you should know every hospital is going to provide you with different things too. For my first-born I was in a very nice hospital with a large room private room. My second birth I was in a room where the hospital bed would only fit diagonally… I bet you can guess which hospital provided more amenities.
What To Pack In Your Hospital Bag:
Birthing packet: Your doctor will give you a huge packet of paperwork to bring with you. Having it filled out and ready before you have the baby will make things so much easier.
Heavy duty pads (the hospital provided these for me): Unfortunately postpartum bleeding is just as common in c-section births as it is in vaginal births
High waisted underwear (the hospital also provided these): You’ll need something for those heavy-duty pads. Plus you want to make sure that the waistband doesn’t hit you at the wrong spot. The big granny panties will be comfortable and you won’t care it you can’t wear them again.
Comfortable top and bottoms: After my first child I had severe complications. I had so many things connected to me that I didn’t wear anything but a hospital gown for two days. I was in the hospital for a total of five days the with my first c-section and three days with my second.
Nursing bras: This is pretty self-explanatory.
Slippers or socks: The hospital floors are cold. If going the sock route make sure they have textured bottoms as the hospital floors can be very slippery.
Nipple balm: Breastfeeding is not easy for everyone. You will need something to help with the soreness that will come from breastfeeding.
Facial cleansing clothes, dry shampoo, baby wipes: Taking a shower can be restricted after a birth or c-section. You may not feel like standing to take one even if you are allowed to.
Shower supplies: Once you are okayed to shower you will need everything. I’d also recommend shower shoes.
Additional toiletries: This includes hair ties, hair brush, deodorant, toothbrush, tooth paste….
Towel: Hospital towels are small and scratchy. I’d recommend bringing your own.
Reusable Water Bottle(My hospital provided this): After birth you will need to drink copious amounts of water. Not only is water important for your recovery it is also important for breastfeeding.
Robe: If you end up like I did with my first, you will want something to help hide what the hospital gown doesn’t cover.
Makeup: If you are going to have visitors or take any photos, you may want to bring some makeup.
Phone charger: You’ll want to have your phone so you can call your insurance and add baby. You’ll also have plenty of time for Pinterest and Candy Crush. So don’t forget your charger.
What To Pack For Baby:
Infant car seat with base installed: You’ll need this to bring baby home. Some hospitals will check some won’t.
Going home outfit: You’ll want to pack something cute but also remember that baby will be coming home in a car seat so make sure to pick an outfit that will work with that.
Diaper bag: Babies have a lot of stuff and you need a place to put it.
Nursing pillow: This is great for nursing or just nice to have when holding the baby.
Several onesies and hat (My hospital provided a hat both times): Your baby will be with you for several days and will need a couple of changes of clothes.
Receiving blanket (My hospital provided receiving blankets): You may want to use a pretty one for pictures.
Diapers and wipes (These were provided for me): I haven’t heard of these not being provided but you may want to bring some with you just in case.
I really stand by only bringing the absolute essentials with you when you have your baby. By packing your hospital bags with this list, you will have everything you need and nothing you don’t. Leave a comment with one of your hospital bag essentials that you think I missed.