10 Essentials for Your Hospital Bag
With my first child, I packed my hospital bag but didn't use much of what I had packed. This time around, I’m going to do things differently and pack wisely!
- Comfortable slippers: Your feet will most likely be swollen and tired, and you won’t want to walk on the cold hospital floor with just your socks.
- Socks: Spoil your feet with some comfy socks. If your hospital provides socks, they will probably be on the bigger side and NOT comfortable!
- Maternity pajama pants: You’ll still be using your maternity PJs for a little bit postpartum. I’ve known moms who made the mistake of bringing regular PJs to the hospital only to find they weren’t yet comfortable to wear. Hospital gowns are cold.
- Adult diapers: The hospital is going to give you these very fun mesh underwear and pads to wear after delivery. However, I’ve heard from moms that adult diapers are more comfortable than the mesh underwear, so I’m bringing them as an option.
- Nursing tank: I started sleeping in a nursing tank when I was pregnant. If you are planning on nursing, they are really great to use. Even if you don’t end up nursing, the built-in bra makes them more comfortable to sleep in than a regular t-shirt when you’re newly postpartum. Again, most moms prefer their own tanks over the hospital gowns.
- Snacks: Chances are you’re not going to love the hospital food, so it’s best to come prepared with some extra food. Also, you may end up delivering after the hospital kitchen is closed and you will be thankful for your own food. Your partner may also appreciate some snacks.
- Robe: It was so nice to have a robe to slip into. The temperature seemed to change in my room a lot, so it was nice to have something cozy that I could easily wear and remove.
- Toiletries and personal items: This includes your toothbrush, toothpaste, contact solution, glasses, shampoo, body wash, hair brush, chapstick, etc. Most hospitals will have several of these items, but if you want your own brand, you should pack them.
- Electronics: Many moms I’ve talked to swear that an extension cord was one of the best things that they packed. Other moms swear they would not have survived without a little fan because their hormones made them so warm all the time. I didn’t have a fan or an extension cord the first round, but I will this time! I did make sure to have a phone charger and camera ready to go (good thing, because my husband literally took over 800 pictures at the hospital).
- Going home outfits: Pack what you and baby are going to wear for your ride home. Just a little tip - avoid an all white outfit for baby. Chances are, baby will have a blowout in that adorable all-white getup right before you leave the hospital.
What you end up packing really depends on your needs. If you like to have your own stuff, then you’ll want to pack beyond my list. But if you want less to lug around, you may want to think about what feels absolutely essential to you. Either way, I hope you have a comfortable stay at the hospital and feel like you packed everything you needed!
By Jessica Cohen, Owner and Instructor of Baby Boot Camp in Encino, Sherman Oaks, Studio City