Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Having a Baby: What to Pack


I am over at Parenting Without A Parachute today, so my mom is here to give you some tips on what to pack for the hospital when you're having a baby. She's been in the field for seventeen years – she is also a CBC (certified breastfeeding counselor) and child birth educator. When it comes to birthing babies, she knows just about everything!

What to pack for the hospital when having a baby

I see people bring more luggage into the hospital to have a baby than I took to Europe for a two week stay.  Less is more when it comes to a hospital stay. Depending on the hospital you may be quite limited on how much space you have to store your gear. 

Bring your own tooth brush & toothpaste. Hospitals use cheap tooth brushes & yucky tasting toothpaste.  

Phone charger. Put a piece of masking tape on it with your name. 

If you bring a digital camera be sure to include either a spare battery or battery charger and spare memory cards. Most hospital gift shops don’t sell electronic accessories. 

The hospital will provide you with gowns to wear while in labor & during the post partum period. You’ll also get sanitary napkins and disposable underpants. 

Unless you’re putting dad/SO under house arrest and not allowing them to leave your side until go home day I’d suggest having a SMALL bag left at home that is ready to be brought in after your baby arrives. Have someone bring that bag in for you once you’re in the post partum phase. Your small bag should be no bigger than what you would bring with you to the gym for a work-out.

Include in your small bag:

Trial sized shampoo and/or conditioner, deodorant, body lotion/moisturizer. Trial sized take up less room & don’t usually represent a large monetary investment so if you leave it behind you’re not out a lot of cash.

Comfy go home outfit for yourself & weather appropriate  go home clothing for the baby.  If you have a special go home outfit or something you want the hospital photograph to include put it in your small bag.

Car seat with properly installed base is needed on go home day. Do not bring in with you when you’re in labor.  Do not bring the car seat, still in the box. The hospital does not do car seat installation. 

Do not bring in a diaper bag. The hospital will provide disposable diapers  and wipes during your stay along with blankets, t-shirts and caps for the baby.  You may take the unused package of diapers with you when you go home. 

The bottom line: Your baby will be born whether you have your $300 curling iron with you or not. We have all the linens, pillows, diapers that we need to take care of you & your baby. Limit the amount of “necessities” you have to have. Everything you bring in with you has to go home with you. You’ll have visitors bringing gifts which will also need to be carried home. Remember: less is more.


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