What’s In My Hospital Bag

What to pack in your hospital bag

Because of COVID rules, Anel can’t leave our hospital room once we get in so we want to be way overprepared for our stay. Last time, he was able to come and go as he pleased and could pick up things we wanted or needed which made it much easier. We also didn’t have another kid to worry about. We had no idea how easy we had it!

When Amalia was born, I included a bunch of items on my list that I never used (flameless candles and a diffuser, much?) and made note of things that I wish I had (like my own towel). So this time around, I feel pretty solid about my hospital bag game.

THE BAG ITSELF

The bag: I’m bringing my extra-large LL Bean boat and tote (with long handles) for everything Anel and I need and a large boat and tote (also with long handles) for the baby’s stuff and the nursing pillow. That will eventually be his diaper bag. They’re already locked and loaded with everything listed below.

Bag organization: I used these J.Crew Factory pouches and a few old BAGGU zip pouches to keep everything organized inside.

HOSPITAL BAG FOR MAMA

ID and insurance card: Both are in my wallet which is in my purse which is also coming with us. We pre-registered at the hospital so we don’t need to bring any other official paperwork.

Dopp kit: I filled my Dopp kit with travel sizes of my everyday toiletries like cleanser, moisturizer, body lotion, toner, a toothbrush/toothpaste/floss, brush, hair ties, deodorant, eye cream, a loofah, and hand lotion.

Towel: The towels in the hospital last time were the size of a napkin and super scratchy and it was the one item I really wished I had brought with me that I didn’t!

Lip balm: I always have it on me but I packed an extra one just in case. Last time I remember my lips getting really dry in the hospital.

Snacks: With COVID rules, Anel can’t leave the room once we get in, so picking up food is out of the question. We’re going to bring as many snacks as we can and hope that we have a nurse who lets us order in!

Electrolytes: I’ve been taking electrolytes every day because of cramping lately and I remember being really glad when Anel happened to pack them last time for after labor when I was exhausted and out of it.

Flip flops: Everyone told me to bring grippy socks last time but I never wore them because my feet were always so hot. But I’m definitely including flip-flops for the shower. I needed those!

Nursing bras and nursing nightgowns/shirts: I’m bringing nursing bras, a nursing nightgown, and a matching robe. Plus an extra set of nursing clothes. Everything felt icky to me after a few hours of wear in the hospital bed last time and I’d rather have more than I need.

Loose sweat pants: Which is the only comfortable option postpartum IMO.

Going home outfit: LOL. Last time I thought I’d wear a dress. Sweatsuit it is!

Extra-long phone charger: Obviously. I needed an extra long one last time because the plug was far from the bed and I always tell new moms to get a long cord for their hospital bag!

Nipple butter: This is the one I love and packed.

Noise-canceling headphones: I used these last time after I got my epidural to listen to recordings from my hypnobirthing class. I was really gald I had them.

Blanket: Obviously need a Chappywrap with me! I was really glad to have had my own blanket with me last time. It made it feel just that much homier.

HOSPITAL BAG FOR THE BABY

Clothes: We’re bringing newborn-sized, as well as 0-3 month sized onesies and PJs. We have no idea how big he’ll be so we wanted to be covered for every scenario.

Swaddle & blanket: I have a muslin blanket and one of our favorite swaddle-me swaddles.

Breastfeeding pillow: I forgot my Boppy last time and really wished I had had it. This time it’s packed for easier feeding in the hospital bed.

Going home outfit: We’re probably just going to put him in a tiny white onesie and swaddle him up. He can get fancy another day!

HOSPITAL BAG FOR DADA

PJs: We’ll be spending one to two nights there (Five if I end up needing a C-section) and we haven’t decided if he’ll stay or not but because we can’t leave to pick up anything, we want him covered

Dopp kit: His Dopp kit is packed full of travel-sized toiletries, a toothbrush, razor, comb, and all of his everyday essentials.

Pillow and eye mask: Last time he ended up going home to get a blow-up mattress because the cot was so uncomfortable. I think we’re just going to throw it in the car now and keep it there until game day so he has that option again.

Comfortable clothes: Not much to say here. Pretty much a no-brainer! This includes socks and underwear obviously.

Snacks: He’s in charge of his own snacks. I can’t wait to see what he’s going to bring.

iPad: For reading, TV, and sending emails to our friends and family.

Flip flops: For the shower.

When it comes to packing a hospital bag, it’s definitely better to be over-prepared. Talk to your friends who have been through this already, but ultimately, pack what you know will make you feel comfy while you’re there. Am I forgetting anything important?

Comments

  1. Addie said:

    A portable/small fan!! Our nurses found one for me when we were in L&D and it truly made the room so much more comfortable both during the day and at night!

    3.11.21 · Reply
  2. don’t forgte YOUR favorite snacks!! Sending s much love and healthy vibes to your whole family…

    3.11.21 · Reply
  3. Brynna said:

    This is one that sounds so silly, but q-tips. I asked my husband about bringing them and he said not to worry. That was the ONLY THING I regret not packing and we joke about it all the time now! So excited for you guys!

    3.11.21 · Reply
  4. Katherine said:

    For my first I way over packed on useless items… blow dryer & hair straightener. I had to laugh because the last thing I felt like doing was my hair (I could barley stand straight up afterwards). I also threw in maternity jeans to wear home haha. I had to call my mom to bring sweats. This time around I am definitely sticking to comfortable clothes (an extra ones as I didn’t realize I may have a lot of fluids leaking, sorry TMI). Also I can’t wait for the big cups they give out my hospital with the straws.

    3.11.21 · Reply
  5. Robbie said:

    Pillow! And a large reusable water bottle for both your and Anel. The nurses will need to get all your water, for both of you, so we wanted to try and ask less often !

    3.11.21 · Reply
  6. Kelsey said:

    I think this is an awesome realistic hospital bag!

    At 37 weeks, my OB called at 12 noon and told me I needed to go to the hospital at 5:00pm that day to be induced…my bag was not packed before then. I threw a bag together with two days of clothes for my husband and I, our extra long phone chargers, AirPods, two pillows, and baby’s coming home outfit. We ended up staying at hospital for 6 days as had a c-section after 48 hours of labor because the doc termed me “failure to complete”. It was truly the wildest, weirdest, and interesting experience. I’m grateful it brought my daughter into the world.

    3.11.21 · Reply
  7. M said:

    Baby nail clippers! They are the only baby item most hospitals don’t have, and my son came out needing his nails clipped stat. Sending love!

    3.11.21 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      Ooh that’s a good one! Amalia scratched her face with her long nails on day one and we didn’t have clippers. Adding now!

      3.11.21 · Reply
  8. Lorraine said:

    Do you not need nappies for the baby (or you call them diapers sorry) or maternity pads for yourself? Over here in the UK mothers have to provide their own nowadays but guessing must be different in the USA!

    3.11.21 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      Nope! They provide them.

      3.11.21 · Reply
  9. Shay R said:

    We both brought our own pillows and I was VERY happy about that. It was a nice comfort. I wish I had brought a big t-shirt and comfy pants I didn’t mind getting blood on for putting on in the recovery room right after birth. Just a note to anyone: don’t be afraid to ask your nurse for anything you might need. They have fans, heat pads, extra pillows etc. a nurse told me they had a whole giant comfy mattress that went on top of the delivery room bed for more comfort (I was induced so we were in that room for 2 nights).

    3.11.21 · Reply
  10. Lindsey B. said:

    Having the boppy will help a lot! I’m just outside of DC and due in June, and our hospital said I’ll likely only stay 24 hours. That is hard to believe, but I feel like I won’t need much at all! Question for you – I know you’re going girl to boy, I’m having a second boy – but did you make a 2nd baby registry? I made one, but I’m struggling with what to put on it, besides a few new things like swaddles, diapers and bottles. What have you added?

    3.11.21 · Reply
  11. Kristin said:

    Lol on the diffuser but I feel you. I actually kept extra makeup wipes and a small bottle of eucalyptus essential oil in my bag. I would put a few drops on the makeup pad and keep it by the bed. It was so helpful to get a whiff of something fresh and clean smelling when I needed and if the smell turned me off, we just threw it away in the bathroom. All the nurses who came bedside commented on it smelling so good.

    3.11.21 · Reply
  12. Michelle said:

    We brought our own sound machine and it was a lifesaver! It helped reduce the sound coming from the other rooms!

    3.11.21 · Reply
  13. Megan said:

    This is so fab! I’m having our first baby in May, and I’ve read about 500 lists trying to figure out what we realllllly need. This one is the right balance!

    With that in mind, what about a post with going home outfits for mom? I know you said sweat suit, but I’d love to see a roundup of cute ones. I’m a newb in both mom world…and sweat suit world. 🙂

    3.11.21 · Reply
  14. Liz P said:

    Extension cord! That came in handy for us when plugging in phones or computers while in the hospital for our stay. We didn’t have visitors due to COVID, so devices came in handy for entertainment and keeping in touch with loved ones. Best of luck!

    3.11.21 · Reply
  15. EM said:

    Nose spray and hand cream– dry air in hospitals, and for the hand cream due to all of the extra handwashing (even without Covid one wants to wash hands often around babies, after diaper changes, etc.) Also throat lozenges– again due to dry hospital air.

    Maybe American hospitals have these things easily available but during a recent hospitalization (unplanned emergency surgery) I was happy to find these things in my purse, because it wasn’t possible to just get them in the hospital, I couldn’t just go somewhere, and due to Covid rules I couldn’t have visitors to bring me this kind of stuff from the outside.

    Nursing bras and the pads that you put in your bra to help with milk leaks.

    In terms of clothing– both maternity and regular clothing (but soft stuff.) When I had my son I had packed maternity clothing for coming home in but I lost the big belly really quickly and they wouldn’t stay up, so I had to have my husband bring me a pair of cotton yoga pants with a drawstring.

    3.12.21 · Reply
  16. Ashley said:

    Five nights for a c-section?! I had an unscheduled c-section on a Friday & was home by Monday afternoon, and only stayed that 3rd night because of medications I was on. I didn’t think any insurance let you stay that long anymore.

    3.12.21 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      Oh interesting! It could be different now. I know when I had Amalia it was 5 nights but maybe it’s 3? I’ll ask at my appt this week but I won’t have to deal with that.

      3.13.21 · Reply
  17. Marisa said:

    I could not have functioned in the hospital without my humidifier. The nurses made us “get approval” for it (from who or how I don’t know – I was so out of it!) but the air in the hospital was so hot and dry that I never would have been able to sleep well / exist without it. On that subject, tons of hand cream, face moisturizer, lip balm…ugh I cringe just thinking about how dry it was!

    3.13.21 · Reply