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What to Pack for the Hospital -...

Wondering what to bring to the hospital on the big day? What is too little and what is too much? Here is a helpful list of things for you to take with you to the hospital or birth center. Most recommend that you pack a bag for labor and birth and a separate bag for postpartum that you can leave in the car or with someone else. This lets you work with less things and keeps things more organized.


Before You Leave


  • Car seat properly installed for your baby
  • Barf bag in the car
  • Waterproof pads for the car ride
  • Make sure you have all the chores at home taken care of (food for pets, etc.)

Medical Information


  • Medical Records
  • Signed copies of your birth plan
  • Any hospital paper work that you can take care of beforehand
  • Pediatrician Information
  • Insurance card and their phone number

Labor Bag


  • Reference materials that you might need during birth
  • Pillows from home (Better than the hospital ones. Make sure to use colored cases to distinguish from your birth place’s linens.)
  • An inflatable ball that you can sit on during labor (some birth locations provide this)
  • Massage tools (oils, lotions, massagers, etc.)
  • Lip Balm
  • Focal point (if you want one)
  • Music (If you can, bring your own iPod, Cd Player, or Tape Player)
  • Toothbrushes for everyone who will be there and toothpaste
  • Water Bottles for ice and water
  • Your own wash cloths (Again, make sure to use colored ones to distinguish from the birth place’s cloths)
  • Any clothes of your own that you’d wish to wear.
  • Socks for mom. (WARNING: If you choose to wear socks, they will most likely come out very dirty and will need to be thrown away)
  • Camera with film and batteries (If it’s digital, make sure it’s fully charged)
  • Camcorder with charged batteries and extra film
  • Cell phone
  • List of people that you want to call during labor and after the baby is born (including your childbirth educator)
  • Calling card for long distance calls
  • Change for a phone booth or a vending machine for snacks
  • Snacks (you will be hungry after birth and your companions will be hungry as well.)
  • Special foods or drinks that you want to prepare
  • Lollipops (the doctor may be afraid that you will choke on any other types of hard candy during a contraction)
  • Baby book where you can get the foot prints done by the nurse when she does the initial paperwork
  • Anything else you think might need (candles, pictures, etc.)

Postpartum Bag


  • More snacks! You will be hungry after birth.
  • Pen and paper to take notes on: record specific details and make sure to track who was there and who to thank later
  • Nursing bras and pads (Preferably the washable, soft ones)
  • Breastfeeding book
  • Going home outfit for baby (Helps with pictures as well)
  • Blanket for Baby
  • More film!
  • Your own personal night gown, robe (They will get dirty!)
  • Shampoo and soap for your own hygiene
  • Pads
  • Brush & Comb
  • Spare night gowns (expect many leaks)
  • Number for breastfeeding support
  • Number of diaper service (if you need to arrange for delivery)
  • Going home outfit for mom (You will still be look to be about 6 months pregnant. Most women wear the clothes that they wore to the hospital, some bring nursing shirts.)
  • Birth Announcements, stamps, envelopes
  • Your makeup, nailpolish, or whatever you use that makes you feel good about yourself. It can boost your self esteem, and ease your nerves after delivery. Babies can sense if you are nervous or tense, so it can help with the bonding process.

Hope this list helps. Feel free to customize it to fit your needs and remember there is no such thing as being too prepared.


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