Packing A Perfect Hospital Bag for Labor/Delivery


I remember sitting at my birth class when they brought up what to bring in your hospital bag. I had heard some suggestions already, but they went into quite a detailed list and I thought most of them were awesome suggestions. So when I went home I started making my list of what to pack! I thought I was being very practical and did not even pack everything that was suggested in the class. Once my bags were all packed, they waited patiently by the front door for our rush to the hospital.

In the hospital I realized that I didn’t need everything that I packed. When you are in the hospital, they really provide you with (almost) everything you could need! So, in an effort to help any mamas preparing for their exciting hospital stay, here is my list of what I actually needed in my hospital bag!

Bag #1 (mom and dad’s bag):

  1. Brush and hair ties
  2. Toiletries– toothbrush/toothpaste, shampoo, body soap, deodorant, all for you and hubby (I used travel size items and even got small travel containers to pour my own soap and shampoo into).
  3. Flip flops/shower shoes (I just wore mine to the hospital)
  4. Clean outfit to go home in– something that is very loose and comfy, I would recommend a dress so that you don’t have to worry about pants fitting/rubbing your belly.
  5. Clean change of clothes for hubby and something comfy for him to sleep in
  6. Nursing bra or tank– this is mostly for going home, I just stayed in the hospital gowns the whole time.
  7. Breast pads– again, this is mainly for going home in case there are any leaks.
  8. Nipple Cream– this will be a lifesaver for any mamas who will be breastfeeding.
  9. Reusable water bottle (It will be important to be drinking lots of water)
  10. Snacks/Drinks– remember that during labor especially, you will want hubby right by you so bring some snacks and drinks for him because you could be there a while (sorry mama, you won’t be able to eat any during labor). You can also pack snacks for when you are moved to recovery for both of you.
  11. Camera– if you have a nice camera then bring it to get some great quality photos that are not just ones from your phone. Charge one of your family members or friends with the task of documenting things for you. Make sure to bring extra batteries for it.
  12. Chapstick– with all the breathing in labor your lips get chapped very easily
  13. Any labor tools you plan to use like a labor ball, breathing or mediation tapes, music etc, and a nursing pillow if you plan to use one
  14. Pediatrician’s business card– once you get to your delivery room they will ask you a million questions to admit you (while you are in labor) even though you already preregistered, and one of them is for your pediatrician’s info. The last thing you may remember is their info, so bring a business card with you; ask hubby to keep in his wallet so he can whip it out for you.
  15. Folder– you will leave the hospital with a lot of important documents, so make sure to bring something with you to safely store them. One thing you can have in it already is a copy of your birth plan to give to your labor/delivery nurse.
  16. Phone Charger– you definitely don’t want your phone to die!
  17. Mints– I was able to suck on a mint during labor which was very refreshing, and also have them after to help refresh me and wake me up a bit for those late night feedings.
  18. Reusable bag– these fold up very easily taking no space in your bag, and you will be leaving the hospital with much more than you came with, so you will want an extra bag to put it all. You can take all the diapers, baby items, mesh underwear, ice packs, postpartum care items etc, and not to mention any gifts that family/friends bring for you.

Bag #2 (baby’s bag)

I used baby’s diaper bag for this, and there was room inside to pack some of my stuff too. You really don’t need that much because the hospital gives you everything that they need while they are there. Here are the few things that you will need for baby:

  1. Going home outfit– I would pack a newborn size and a 3 month size (baby may be too big for the newborn size!)
  2. Swaddle blanket– this is again more for going home, but you may want to use a cute one for photos in the hospital (there was a photographer that came to our room and she asked if we had a blanket or special outfit we wanted to use)
  3. Pacifier and pacifier clip *if you plan on using one
  4. Hand sanitizer
  5. Burp cloths (just in case you need one)
  6. Car seat– okay, I know this won’t go in the bag, but don’t forget to install the car seat in enough time before you worry about going to the hospital, you can’t bring baby home without it!

*Notice I did not have diapers or wipes here, that is because the hospital will give them to you, and plenty of extras to take home!

Was there anything in your bag that you loved having at the hospital?