Ten Things You Will Need in the Hospital

1. Nightgown
After you give birth you will probably stay in the hospital gown for a while, but once the doctor is done checking everything and the cleanup is done, most hospitals will let you change into a gown of your own. You might prefer pajamas with shorts or pants as a bottom, but it might be easier to wear a nightgown. There will be many trips to the bathroom and you won’t be very stable, so pants might be hard to manage. But bringing both might also be an option. Also, if you’re planning on nursing, be sure to bring pajamas that will be convenient for that.

2. Socks
Hospital rooms are generally kept quite cool, and your feet don’t get much circulation during or after birth, so having some warm, comfy socks will be a benefit. Plus, you’ll be walking around trying to help labor, or trying to get to the bathroom after labor, and you won’t walk to walk barefoot on the hospital linoleum.

3. Baby outfit
The hospital will provide mostly everything you need for your little baby; diapers, wipes, soap, pacifier, even a shirt to wear during his stay. So there isn’t a need to bring all of those things. You will want to be sure to bring an outfit to bring home in. Make sure the outfit includes a shirt, pants, socks, and a hat.

4. Receiving blankets
These are the only other things you’ll need for baby. The hospital will provide you with plenty of blankets during your stay, but once you are ready to leave the blankets are not allowed to go with you. It’s a good idea to bring at least five receiving blankets because you will want to roll them up and stuff them around little baby’s head. Even with a neck support in the car seat, your baby will still be too little to have any neck support. Be sure to bring a heavy blanket to cover him if you’ll be giving birth during a cold month.

5. Camera
This is definitely essential, as you’ll want to capture every moment! Decide ahead of time what moments you want to capture (signing admission papers, getting an IV, holding the newborn, etc.) so you’ll be sure to get the pictures you want. Some hospitals do not allow a personal video camera, so you might want to check that ahead of time.

6. Boppy
This can be one of the best things for you and your baby, if used properly! A Boppy is a C-shaped pillow that has many different uses, the most common one being to aid in nursing. The pillow goes around mommy’s tummy; baby lies on the pillow with mommy’s arm supporting the baby. With this pillow you don’t have to stuff pillows all around you and under baby to get the right support, it’s already there. This is definitely a wise investment. There are many other uses once the baby gets bigger as well.

7. Clothes to wear home
You’ll want to bring a comfortable outfit that would have fit you when you were six months pregnant. After giving birth you will be quite swollen and still have most of your weight, so don’t expect to fit into “normal” clothes just yet. Bring something that is roomy, comfortable, and bigger than you would think you would need.

8. Nursing bra
If you are planning on nursing, you’ll need one of these in the hospital. Some experts suggest getting a bra that is one cup size bigger than what you wear before giving birth. Once your milk comes in, your breasts will get larger and it’s better to have a bra that is too big than too small.

9. Mints or gum
While you’re giving birth your senses will be extremely heightened and it might be helpful to have these to pass around to nursing staff and whoever else is in the room.

10. Support
Women have been giving births since time began, but it’s still one of the most dangerous things a human being can go through. It’s also very stressful, emotional, and taxing. Having someone that you love and trust and that loves and supports you is always helpful. Whether it’s your husband, boyfriend, sister, mom, or best friend, you won’t regret having a good support system there when you need it most.