Guest writer: Daniel Sherwin
From excitement to anxiety, you may feel a range of emotions when preparing to have a baby. As Forbes explains, this is perfectly normal, and some nerves can even be a good thing. However, you don’t want to be overwhelmed by worries. Preparing for your little one’s arrival in advance can help you keep calm when the big day arrives. One step you can take is to pack your hospital bag for the delivery beforehand.
Breast pumping support team Save the Milk presents this quick guide revealing what to pack in your hospital bag before your baby arrives.
A personal hygiene kit for mom
The birthing process takes time. You want to ensure your comfort throughout the process. Pack a basic personal hygiene kit including a toothbrush, toothpaste, a hairbrush, and extra hair elastics. Lip balm and moisturizer are also great for added comfort. Finally, pack postpartum needs like nipple cream, maxi pads, and nursing pads. As Mom Loves Best explains, a peri bottle can also help ensure comfort in the first days post-birth.
Comfy clothing for mother and child
Clothing is also critical to mom’s comfort both before and after birth. This should include supportive bras, comfortable undergarments and loungewear that’s functional yet stylish. Pack things you can easily put on without making the added effort or slipping something over your head. After you’ve given birth, even these small conveniences can make a big difference! Also pack some going-home clothes for the baby, including hats, socks, and onesies.
Cell phone and accessories
You’ll want to take plenty of photos of your newborn baby. Include your cellphone and a charger in your hospital bag. Sites like Verizon offer high-tech chargers and power banks for added convenience. You might also consider bringing some accessories for impromptu newborn photo shoots. Melissa Arlena Photography recommends a letterboard sign, so you can take pictures of your little one next to a sign indicating their name and date of birth. This is a great first birth announcement to send out to friends and family.
In addition to a take-home outfit, your baby will also need some small-sized diapers to get home after the birth. Also, pack the basics like wipes, hand sanitizer and burp cloths. You may even want to go ahead and pack your own breast pump so you can get familiar with this device. Remember, breastfeeding doesn’t always click at first, so be patient with yourself. If you hit any roadblocks breastfeeding, Save the Milk offers access to a breast milk marketplace where you can connect with other moms who are donating excess breast milk.
A car seat
This last item definitely won’t fit inside of your hospital bag but it’s nonetheless an essential that some parents may forget. A car seat ensures you can safely bring your newborn home when the time comes. What To Expect offers a guide to buying a car seat, explaining the different types, sizing, and how to choose the right one to suit your needs. Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installing the seat to ensure your little one’s safety.
Packing a hospital bag before your baby’s arrival will save you time and stress when the day of the actual birth arrives. The above list covers some essential needs as well as a few extras you might want to have on hand for added convenience and comfort.