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Packing for the Hospital

As you begin to enter the home stretch of your pregnancy, you?ll want to start thinking about packing a bag for the hospital. Not only do you need to pack for yourself, but your new baby and your birthing coach(es) will need a few items as well.

For You

When I packed my bag the first time around, I went a step beyond simply preparing for labor. In fact, there was little I didn?t bring along. Not only did I have an iPod docking station, but the iPod was loaded with playlists for delivery, birth, infant and many other events. Not only did we barely listen to it, but it was one more thing to have to haul out of the hospital and home upon discharge.

When packing for yourself, think about what you really need ? do you need a nightgown? The hospital will have you in a gown for the duration of your stay, and most likely you?ll need to change it a few times over that period. Do you want to have to bring several nightgowns that may end up stained?

My necessities list includes:

  • A camera
  • Pad of paper and pen
  • Phone list of friends/relatives to notify
  • Shampoo and other toiletries
  • Change of clothes for the ride home (note: these clothes are maternity clothes; most women continue to wear maternity clothes for at least a month after delivering)
  • Magazines
  • Lip balm
  • Makeup

For Partners/Coaches

Your partner and/or birthing coach will probably be there a while; bring along a magazine or two, as well as bottled water and snacks.

For Baby

Newborn babies need very little, and much of it will be provided by the hospital, including receiving blankets and diapers. However, there are some items to make sure you have, and a few that you will be required to have. My list includes:

  • Car seat
  • Blanket to put over the car seat in case it?s cold outside
  • Outfit for coming home
  • Pacifiers

Don’t wait until it’s too late for those last minute things to do. Making a checklist and completing early will give you much needed peace of mind.

What are your hospital essentials?

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