What to Pack in Your Hospital Bag

Childbirth is the moment at the end of pregnancy that’s both exciting and scary. This is especially true if you are a first-time parent, and perhaps even more so if you didn’t plan on parenting in the first place. However, as scary as it may seem, being prepared for the moment can help you feel more in control and relaxed, no matter if you have a scheduled c-section or are waiting for labor to start. One of the ways to get prepared is to think about what to bring in your hospital bag if you plan on staying there for at least a few nights. While this list is by no means exhaustive, it can help prepare both you and your baby for the first days of their life.
Change of Clothes
It may seem obvious, but having several changes of clothes can be necessary. This is because you don’t know how long you might be at the hospital, especially given the public health issues going on. You may also want to bring a sweater since it can often be cold in hospitals.
Let’s be honest — much of labor can involve waiting! Bring along a favorite book to help pass the time and relax you a little bit if you can.
Again this might seem like an obvious tip, but don’t forget to pack your own toiletries! Some hospitals provide their own, but it’s best to assume they don’t. Plus, it’s like bringing some reminders of home with you, which can be very comforting during and after childbirth.
Personal Hospital Gowns
Instead of the ones provided to you, you may want to bring your own hospital gown to the hospital, particularly if you plan on taking professional photographs after your baby’s birth.
New Outfits
Just like you will need a change of clothes, your baby will too! For various reasons, newborns can typically go through several outfit changes a day. Particularly in the first few days of life, you can have full outfits or even just pack a few onesies or sleepers for simplicity.
Bottles/Nursing Gear
Regardless of how you plan to feed your baby, they need to eat! If you plan to breastfeed, it can be helpful to pack a breast pump or a silicone suction version to collect any milk from the letdown. For formula feeders, packing enough formula and bottles to last several days takes away some of the stress at the moment.
The first few days – and months – of your baby’s life involves holding and carrying them close to you. If you feel comfortable, consider bringing a baby wrap or other age-appropriate carrier with you to the hospital. This can be particularly helpful if you want to walk around and have some freedom away from the hospital bed, especially if your stay is longer than anticipated.
For more information on how to prepare for labor and delivery, take advantage of our free classes led by one of the nursing staff at Clearway Clinic. We also give tips and information on breastfeeding. To learn about these classes or sign up, email contact@clearwayclinic.com or call one of our locations.

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