Packing Your Hospital Bag – Tips & Tricks

Packing Your Hospital Bag – Tips & Tricks

As you get ready for the birth of your baby, one key part of your planning should be packing your hospital bag (if you’re planning a hospital birth). You don’t know how long your labor will take, or how long you’ll have to stay in the hospital after your baby is born, so it’s good to be prepared with a range of essentials and comfort items that will help you throughout the birth process.

Here are a few items moms should consider packing in their hospital bags (and a few for partners, too!):

1. Clothing

Pack a few changes of clothes, and make sure they’re all comfortable. Keep in mind that you’ll want easy access for breastfeeding, and that you’ll likely still need maternity sizes right after birth.

2. Labor Tools

If you’re planning to use any accessories for labor, make sure they’re in your bag. Music, essential oils, etc – anything the hospital won’t be able to provide.

3. Food

Don’t go overboard on this one, but it’s worth bringing a few nutritious snacks and a sports drink in your hospital bag. Some women do get hungry during labor (especially if it’s long), and you’ll definitely be craving something healthy as you recover.

4. Essentials

This seems obvious, but in your rush to get to the hospital it can be easy to forget the basics. Make sure you’ve got your toiletries, medications, cell phones, and chargers. If you have long hair, bring extra hair ties, and don’t forget lotion and lip balm – the hospital can be really dry.

5. Extras

If you have room in your bag and want to bring along a favorite pillow, blanket, or warm robe, go ahead. You may end up being in the hospital for a few days and having something comfortable and familiar can be soothing.

6. For the Baby

Your hospital should provide diapers, wipes, and swaddle blankets for your newborn, but you should plan to bring a few outfits and some burp cloths. Hospitals have different policies about pacifiers – if you think you’ll want to use one it’s best to bring your own.

7. For Your Partner

Don’t forget to have your partner pack a hospital bag, too. They’ll need a few changes of clothing, toiletries, snacks to sustain them through your labor, and anything else they’ll want on hand for an overnight stay.

8. Skip These

In the interest of not lugging an overstuffed, heavy bag to the hospital, leave these items behind:

  • Baby toys – your newborn will mostly be interested in sleeping, eating, and bonding with you. Don’t worry about bringing much for them.
  • Diapers – the hospital will have more than enough.
  • Jewelry – you’ll probably have to take most of it off during labor and you don’t want to have to worry about it.

For more tips on preparing for birth and life as a new parent, visit

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