What to pack in your hospital bag

My memory is a little hazy about what I took when I went into hospital (actually, the wonderful Crowborough Birthing Clinic) to have my first son – well, it was 13 years ago now! The one thing I do remember though, is packing a large bar of Cadbury’s chocolate, for which I was very grateful at 2am during a feed.

So, chocolate aside, what do you really need in your hospital bag? I’ve asked lots of mums and professionals what they took and what you need and here’s my list:

1. Clothing

Comfy pyjamas and slippers – there’s nothing like a bit of comfort after you’ve given birth

big knickers – if you have a Caesarean, you won’t want anything touching your scar, a big pair of soft knickers that come up really high won’t be glamorous but honestly, you will be so grateful for them

nursing bra – your milk won’t come in properly until day 3, after which point you will need breast pads

going home outfit – loose fitting, there’s not many mums who’ll be able to fit straight back into their pre-pregnancy jeans

flip flops – to wear in the shower

2. Toiletries

shower gel, shampoo and conditioner – to make you feel you again

make-up, if you wear it – for the same reason

hairbrush – see above

hairband or clips – to keep your hair off your face during labour

lip salve – it’s warm in hospitals and your lips dry out quickly

3. Food and drink

Water (iced) or coconut water – it’s so important to keep hydrated

click here see my other blog for tips on the best snacks to have during labour

4. For baby

several outfits – in a couple of sizes, your baby may be bigger or smaller than you were expecting

newborn nappies

soft blanket to wrap your baby in – the hospital will have the basics but it’s nice to have something fluffy and comforting of your own

water wipes – for those first sticky meconium poos – http://waterwipes.com/

baby socks and mittens

car seat

5. Other essentials

phone and charger – to tell everyone the good news

spare change – for the parking meter, pay phone or vending machine

notebook – to note down things you don’t want to forget and to write a list for your partner of things to do!!

camera – ask your partner to photograph those important moments

breastfeeding pillow – which could also double as an extra pillow to sleep with

book or tablet – for entertainment, our local hospital has a TV in each room but only one remote control on the ward


I think that’s it! If you think I’ve missed something please let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear what you think.