When you’re on the way to deliver a baby, the last thing you want to do is scramble around and pack your hospital bag. We’re here to give you a list of things you should consider bringing to the hospital. Keep in mind – everybody is different and wants their own birth experience. You’re always welcome to pack more or less than our list.
For Labor and Delivery:
- Paperwork, IDs, and Insurance cards – ensure that your medical records are easily accessible for medical staff to review and that you can check into the hospital.
- Your birth plan – if you’ve created a birth plan, bring it with you so medical staff can reference it if they have any questions. If you don’t have one, no worries. It’s not required.
- Bathrobe/Labor Dress – this can make the hospital feel more at home while you’re waiting to go into labor.
- Socks – nobody likes cold feet.
- Slip-on shoes and flip-flops – slip-on shoes are great for when you want to walk around the hospital ward. You’ll want some flip-flops to use as shower shoes.
- Lip Balm – nobody wants chapped lips, especially if you’re going into labor. This simple thing can make you feel much more comfortable.
- Lotion – Itchy, dry skin is the last thing you want when you’re about to have a baby. Lotion can help your skin stay hydrated and keep you focused on the task at hand.
- Comfy pillows – hospital pillows aren’t anything to call home about, so consider bringing your own. If you’re the type who likes to sleep with a specific pillow, we recommend getting it (just remember to bring it home).
- Eye mask and earplugs – you deserve to rest, but sometimes the hospital isn’t the best place to sleep. An eye mask and earplugs can help you sleep peacefully.
- Nightgowns/PJs – you’ll want something comfy to sleep in after delivery. If you plan on breastfeeding, we recommend wearing something that’s front-opening.
- Maternity pads – the hospital will provide you with maternity pads, but it’s always good to be prepared. You’ll probably change them every couple of hours for the first few days after giving birth, so we recommend heavy-duty pads.
- Underwear – several pairs of underwear are recommended. Bring something you’ll be comfortable in and can easily hold your maternity pads.
- Toiletries – a hairbrush, comb, deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, hair ties, skincare, and lotion can make a huge difference in how you feel after labor. We also recommend a bag to put your dirty clothes in.
- Clothes – you may want some comfy clothes to wear around the hospital while you’re there.
To Share with Your Partner:
- Snacks and water – you can have some of these too. Labor can be a long process, so having something to eat and drink along the way can be nice.
- Charger – we recommend an extra-long charger.
- Entertainment – a book, a tablet, headphones for music, whatever you prefer.
For Your Baby:
- Bodysuits – different hospitals have different policies, so make sure you ask. But bringing something for your baby to wear is a good idea.
- Socks and booties – newborns get cold easily, so it’s a good idea to bring something to keep them warm.
- Blanket – the hospital will give you a blanket, but if you have a special blanket in mind for them, then it’s a good idea to bring it.
- Going home outfit – think about the weather when packing what your baby will come home in; they get cold easily!
- Car seat – you’ll need a car seat (already installed) to take your baby home safely.
Remember that this birth is yours. We want you to have things with you to help you be more comfortable during your stay. If you have any questions about different policies, want to create a birth plan, or are curious if there are other things you should pack for the hospital, call Greenville Women’s Care at 252-757-3131 to talk to our Midwife, Sarah Sears, or make an appointment.