What to take to the hospital

After a healthy nine months of pregnancy, it's almost time for your baby to arrive. One thing you'll want to do as you get ready for labor is to pack your hospital bag. You'll want to pack something for yourself as well as your new baby.

What should you pack for yourself?

As you pack your hospital bag, you may want to include items for when you're going into labor as well as after you have the baby.

  • Health insurance information
  • A nightgown or big shirt to wear during labor, although a hospital gown will be provided
  • Socks
  • Washcloths and towels
  • Slippers
  • A few nightgowns, pajamas or T-shirts and sweat pants (breastfeeding mothers might find loose-fitting T-shirts or nursing clothes most comfortable)
  • A robe
  • Several pairs of underpants
  • Large, self-adhesive sanitary pads (the ones provided by the hospital may be small and hard to use)
  • Soap
  • Shampoo
  • Hairbrush
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Any other toiletries, cosmetics or hairstyling equipment you want
  • Phone numbers for people you want to call
  • A telephone charge card (you usually can't use a cell phone in a hospital)
  • Clothes to wear home (be sure they are loose fitting)

You may want to bring your birth plan, too. A birth plan is a set of instructions you make about your baby’s birth. Fill out the plan with your partner. Then share it with your provider, your family and other support people. It’s best for everyone to know ahead of time that you plan to breastfeed.

What should you pack for your baby?

Most hospitals provide the basics for newborns during their hospital stay: a knit cap, an undershirt, diapers and blankets. When it comes time to take the baby home, you'll need your own things.

  • A receiving blanket
  • Clothes to wear home, including an undershirt, cap and socks
  • Disposable diapers (most hospitals provide these)
  • Bunting or a warm blanket if it's cold outside
  • A car seat (if baby is to be driven home)



Last reviewed: December, 2013

After a healthy nine months of pregnancy, it's almost time for your baby to arrive. One thing you'll want to do as you get ready for labor is to pack your hospital bag. You'll want to pack something for yourself as well as your new baby.

What should you pack for yourself?

As you pack your hospital bag, you may want to include items for when you're going into labor as well as after you have the baby.

  • Health insurance information
  • A nightgown or big shirt to wear during labor, although a hospital gown will be provided
  • Socks
  • Washcloths and towels
  • Slippers
  • A few nightgowns, pajamas or T-shirts and sweat pants (breastfeeding mothers might find loose-fitting T-shirts or nursing clothes most comfortable)
  • A robe
  • Several pairs of underpants
  • Large, self-adhesive sanitary pads (the ones provided by the hospital may be small and hard to use)
  • Soap
  • Shampoo
  • Hairbrush
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Any other toiletries, cosmetics or hairstyling equipment you want
  • Phone numbers for people you want to call
  • A telephone charge card (you usually can't use a cell phone in a hospital)
  • Clothes to wear home (be sure they are loose fitting)

You may want to bring your birth plan, too. A birth plan is a set of instructions you make about your baby’s birth. Fill out the plan with your partner. Then share it with your provider, your family and other support people. It’s best for everyone to know ahead of time that you plan to breastfeed.

What should you pack for your baby?

Most hospitals provide the basics for newborns during their hospital stay: a knit cap, an undershirt, diapers and blankets. When it comes time to take the baby home, you'll need your own things.

  • A receiving blanket
  • Clothes to wear home, including an undershirt, cap and socks
  • Disposable diapers (most hospitals provide these)
  • Bunting or a warm blanket if it's cold outside
  • A car seat (if baby is to be driven home)



Last reviewed: December, 2013